Whether you have tooth damage that needs correcting, or you’re looking to change your smile, dental implants may be the right option. When working with a dentist to decide the best course of action for the health and look of your smile, you may be wondering what the process is like when getting dental implants. Dental implants are no minor procedure; they require removing an old tooth, and inserting a new, artificial tooth. You may be wondering if this is painful, and what life is like after the procedure. Here’s what recovery is like after getting dental implants.
Once you and your dentist have made the decision to move forward with the dental implant procedure, your dentist will need to remove the tooth/teeth to be replaced.
While having a tooth pulled may sound painful, with anesthesia you will only feel some tugging and pressure as the tooth is extracted. After this procedure, you may be a little tender but you should be relatively pain free. Part of the recovery for tooth extraction is to avoid smoking, drinking through a straw, spit excessively, or blow your nose for at least 24 hours to avoid dry socket. Depending on where the tooth was extracted and how many were extracted, you may want to eat softer foods that are easier to chew.
The next step in getting dental implants is the implant that attaches to your jaw bone. This will be what the abutment and crown are later attached to. Depending on how much access your dentist needs to the jaw bone, he may need to make a small incision which could leave you with a few stitches. Under anesthesia, stitches will be painless, and the recovery speedy.
The insertion of the implant will not be painful, but it may take a couple hours. You will feel drilling and pressure, similar to getting a cavity filled. Like the tooth extraction, you can expect some soreness and discomfort after the procedure. You will likely have to avoid hard or touch foods for several days.
The implant will need time to fuse with your jawbone and create a strong hold for a new tooth. This can take several weeks or even months. You won’t notice this part, but it will delay the next step in your dental implant timeline. Once your dentist thinks your implant is sturdy enough, he will attach the abutment.
Your dentist will need to tighten the abutment with the dental equivalent of a wrench. You won’t be able to feel this aside from some pressure. After the abutment is placed, your dentist will be able to insert your crown, aka, your new tooth!
All in all, when you get dental implants you will experience some pressure, tugging, drilling, different instruments being put in your mouth, and hear a few funny sounds. After each step of the process you will feel soreness that comes from big changes to your smile which may result in a soft-food diet. But the recovery after getting dental implants should be painless! If you have concerns, be sure to talk to a trusted dentist who specializes in dental implants, like The Crawford Leishman Dental Group.