When you have damaged teeth or teeth that need to be extracted or that are already missing, then you might want to consider implants. The process is typically done in a dental office and results in teeth that look and function like your natural teeth. The overall process of the procedure is usually the same for everyone with a few variations depending on your bone structure and the kind of implant that is used.
Before meeting with a dental implants Fort Collins CO dentist, you should learn more about the reasons the process is completed. For many people, implants are ideal if they are missing one or more teeth. Implants can improve your self-esteem because you can look in the mirror to see a full set of teeth instead of an empty space here and there. If you have other oral issues that impact the health of your teeth and the rest of your mouth, then implants might be the answer. They are also an option if you are unable to wear dentures. However, the process can take a few months to complete, so you need to keep this in mind when you meet with the dentist to make a decision as to how you want to proceed in restoring your smile.
A dental exam is performed before the implants are placed. Models are usually taken of your teeth so that your dentist can make implants that will look like the other teeth in your mouth. A treatment plan is designed that takes into account your oral health. The plan will detail the length of time that it should take for the process to be complete and some of the factors that might inhibit the timing that it takes for your mouth to heal. You should discuss your overall health and any medications that you’re taking.
Your dentist will talk to you about your anesthesia options so that you’re comfortable during the implant process. Local anesthetics are usually given, but other sedatives can be used if you have several implants that need to be placed. Whether you’re having general anesthesia or a mild sedative, you need to have someone with you who can take you home.
If the tooth is still in your mouth, then it will be removed and the area prepared to receive the implant. Your dentist will likely prescribe an antibiotic before the implant process starts so that there is a decreased risk of developing an infection. Sometimes, bone grafting is needed if your jawbone isn’t healthy enough for the implant right away. A metal post is placed in your jawbone once your mouth has healed. Once the post is in place, the bone has to heal, which can take a few weeks to a few months. When the bone is ready, an abutment is placed on top of the post. This is where the tooth will sit. A benefit of an implant is that it won’t move around like dentures can and will function like your natural teeth.