A dental implant treatment will solve missing teeth problems. The implants are placed on the jawbone using a surgical procedure, and will be attached teeth replacements (such as crowns or a fixed bridge) after the completion of a healing period. Those who are interested in going for dental implants will benefit from knowing what to expect from the treatment process, to help them prepare better financially, physically, and emotionally for the procedure.
The first step in a dental implant treatment is the initial consultation. This is the point when the dentist or implant surgeon checks the condition of the teeth to determine existing problems and how to go about with the treatment. Diagnostics such as dental x-rays may also be taken to provide a clearer picture of where the implants need to be placed, and to ensure the safety of the treatment. The initial consultation is when the patient is encouraged to ask questions about the treatment, while the implant dentist discusses all treatments and alternatives related to the procedure.
The second consultation is when the actual planning for the treatment starts. A more detailed examination of the teeth will be done to help determine what course of treatment will be taken. The patient may be shown photos, videos, and other forms of graphic presentations to explain the implant treatment even further, and to give a more concrete idea of what the implants can do to solve missing teeth problems. This is also the stage when a written treatment plan is presented to the patient, along with consent forms that need to be signed before the actual implant placement can proceed.
After all the forms have been signed and completed, the actual dental implant placement can begin. The implants are placed using a surgical procedure, which will be done under anesthesia to ensure that no discomfort will be felt; antibiotics will be given to decrease the risk of infection. Anxious patients can opt to go for conscious sedation to eliminate fear and anxiety during the procedure. The implants are surgically placed in the jawbone, and temporary teeth can be attached to these implants (whenever necessary) so that the patient does not go home toothless.
A healing period, which usually takes three months, follows the surgery to allow the implants to integrate fully with the surrounding bone tissue. After the implants have healed, they will be exposed once more and thoroughly checked before the permanent crowns or bridge can be placed a few weeks later. The patient is given instructions for a safe and quick recovery, and tips on how to take care of the implants to ensure that they last for a long time.