What is a Dental Implant?
The small titanium screw in a dental implant works like a natural tooth root. An implant can be used to replace a single lost tooth or many missing teeth.
After it's surgically placed in the jaw bone, the implant bonds with the natural bone to serve as an anchor for a tooth replacement.
Dental implants can help to prevent surrounding teeth from shifting, resolve jaw joint pain or bite issues, and help restore facial tissues and appearance.
Why Replace Missing Teeth
If a tooth is missing, the teeth surrounding the gap may begin to shift out of place and cause misalignment issues. The jaw bone around the area may also begin to deteriorate, resulting in facial collapse or negatively impacting your ability to eat and talk.
The Dental Implant Procedure
A dental implant procedure requires a dental implant (titanium screw) and a tooth replacement.
To start, your dentist will surgically place the implant into your jaw bone underneath the gum tissue. As the tissue heals, the implant will bond with the bone and attach to the gum.
Once healing is complete, generally 3 to 6 months post-surgery, patients come back to our office to have the procedure completed.
During this final appointment, your dentist will attach a tooth replacement such as a dental crown, bridge or denture, to the implant to mimic the look and function of a natural tooth.
Dental Implant FAQs
Here are some of our most frequently asked questions we've received from patients about dental implants at Pure Dental.
- How long does a dental implant last?
If your implant is cared for properly, it can last a lifetime. Proper care involves proper brushing and flossing at home, in addition to attending regular hygiene cleanings and exams at your dental office.
The longevity of a dental implant may also depend on other factors including nutrition, genetics, or the development of any dental diseases.
- How do I care for my dental implants?
Care for your dental implant just as you would your natural teeth.
Seeing your dentist for regular hygiene appointments and maintaining a proper brushing and flossing routine at home can help prevent disease or decay from developing in the surrounding teeth and gums, which can have a negative impact on your dental implants.
- Does getting a dental implant hurt?
During dental implant surgery, your dentist will administer anesthesia to help you feel comfortable so you won't feel pain during the procedure.
Following the procedure, there is not usually much discomfort. Most patients can manage any pain with over-the-counter pain medication for a few days after the procedure.
You will also need to eat a soft diet for the first couple of weeks after the implant procedure to avoid pain or irritation.
- How long does the dental implant process take?
The entire dental implant procedure usually takes about two to nine months to complete, depending on your treatment plan.
Your dentist can provide you with a more specific timeline based on your particular case.
- Will my insurance cover dental implants?
Some insurances companies will cover the cost of dental implants, while some will only pay for a portion of the cost, and others won't pay for any part of it.
To determine what part, if any, of your dental implant treatment will be covered by your insurance, check with your insurance provider.