Do you have a badly damaged or missing tooth? If so, you may be thinking about getting dental implant surgery. You may also be wondering what’s involved and if it hurts.
Every case is different, but you should know that you have nothing to fear with modern implant surgery. You won’t feel any pain during your procedure, and there are steps you can take to stay comfortable afterward.
The caring dental specialists at Margaret Culotta-Norton, DDS, PC are experts at restoring dental implants, and they’ll make sure you get the smile you desire with as minimal discomfort as possible.
What’s involved in implant surgery?
The process of getting a dental implant can take 6-12 months, and it usually takes a few steps. We will work with an oral surgeon, who will prepare your jaw, and then we will supply your new artificial tooth.
First, your surgeon will examine your mouth and bone structure. This typically involves taking X-rays and getting an impression of your mouth.
Next, if any part of your bad tooth remains, your surgeon will remove it. Then, they’ll insert a metal post into the area of your missing tooth, which will go below your gumline. This will act as the root for your new tooth.
Once the post has fully fused with your jawbone — which could take a few months — we’ll place an abutment onto the post and a permanent crown onto the abutment. The crown will look like a natural tooth, and it will be the only part of the implant anyone will see.
Will implant surgery hurt?
While undergoing your implant procedure, you’ll be given a local anesthetic, so you won’t feel any pain. All you may feel will be vibrations from the drill and maybe a bit of pressure.
What to expect after your procedure
After the anesthetic has worn off, you may feel discomfort and mild pain at the site of the implant and around your cheeks, chin, and under your eyes. This discomfort should be easy to manage, and it shouldn’t last for more than 3-5 days.
Here’s what you can do immediately after your procedure and what you can do going forward to reduce any discomfort and make sure your mouth stays healthy.
We can recommend over-the-counter drugs, and we can prescribe stronger medication if the circumstances call for it. Furthermore, you can use an ice pack if swelling occurs.
Practice good oral hygiene
It will take a number of months from the time the metal post is implanted to the time you get your permanent crown. During this time, you should still practice good oral hygiene. Your providers will tell you how you should take care of your mouth during the different periods of treatment. At times, you may be asked to just swish your mouth with salt water until a part of your mouth heals. At other times, you may be told to brush gently with a soft-bristle toothbrush. In any case, make sure to follow your providers’ instructions on how to take care of your mouth as it heals.
Avoid detrimental habits
Avoid smoking and chewing tobacco, and don’t chew hard objects, such as candy and ice. If you tend to grind your teeth, tell our staff beforehand, and we can design a plan to help you keep from doing that.
Visit us regularly
It’s important that you maintain regular checkups with us so we can check the progress of your new implant.
If you’re thinking about a dental implant, there’s nothing to fear. To learn more, book an appointment online or over the phone with Margaret Culotta-Norton, DDS, PC today.