Enjoying Better Dental Checkups

Understanding the Dental Implant Surgical Procedure

Dental implants are a popular solution to dental health issues because of their numerous advantages. They are comfortable as they hold firmly in place and resemble natural teeth. This helps patients chew food and speak confidently without fear of dentures falling off. Additionally, dentists prefer dental implants to bridgeworks and dentures that do not fit as firmly.

The dental implant procedure usually takes a few months from removing the affected tooth, preparation, fixing the dental implant, and healing fully. Read on to learn more about the dental implant procedure.

1. Bone Grafting

The jaws are powerful and have thick gums to absorb and withstand the pressure people apply to the teeth during chewing. Thus, dentists ensure the flesh around the gums is thick enough to handle the pressure before placing dental implants. If the gums are not thick enough, the dentist must perform a bone graft to add more skin to enhance the gum's thickness. Grafting is not always required in all dental implant procedures and is only used when the dentists determine the gums are not thick enough to support the dental implants. Bone grafting creates a solid base for the dental implant to fit into and hold firmly.

2. Placing the Dental Implant

Depending on whether a patient requires a bone graft, the next step involves fixing the dental implant in place. First, the dentist cuts open the gum to expose the underlying jaw bone. After that, the dentist drills holes into the jaw bone to fix the dental implants. Once the dentist has drilled the holes, they implant the post into the hole since it serves as the dental implant's root. After the dental implants are in place, the dentist must leave the wounds to heal before proceeding with the procedure. In the meantime, as the patient waits to recover and proceed with the procedure, they can use dentures as placeholders to fill the gap. 

3. Bone Growth and Abutment Placement

When the patient is healing before the dentist can complete the dental implant procedure, the jawbone grows and becomes a part of the dental implant surface. The growth of the jaw bone happens through a process called osseointegration which takes several months. The process takes several months to give the jaw bone ample time to form a solid base that holds the dental implant's roots. After the growth is complete, the dentist places an abutment where the dental implant's crown attaches. The dentist once again opens up the gum, exposes the implant, attaches the abutment, and closes it back. After that, the patient, with the dentist's help, selects their artificial teeth of choice to be fitted.