Rediscovering Your Smile With Dental Implants

Rediscovering Your Smile With Dental Implants
Posted on 02/16/2017
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Having a chipped, decaying or damaged tooth can put a damper on your confidence and keep you from enjoying yourself if it causes pain. Luckily, with your dentist’s help, you can replace that trouble tooth or teeth with beautiful new dental implants. In no time at all, your smile will become one of your best features.

What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants may sound a bit intimidating but they can provide relief for many patients who struggle with tooth loss or damage. A dental implant is a titanium root that is surgically placed into your jaw just like a tooth root. Once this “root” is secured, your dentist can mount new teeth onto them that look and function just like your natural teeth. Implants are not dentures and do not need to be adhered to your gums. They act just like regular teeth.

What Happens During Dental Implant Surgery?

Unlike most surgeries, dental implant surgery happens in stages. Before any implants are installed, the damaged or decaying tooth is removed and your jaw is prepared for the surgical installation. If your jaw bone isn’t thick enough for the titanium post, your dentist may perform a process called bone grafting in which a small bit of bone is taken from another area of your jaw or body and transplanted to the implant site to support the implant.

After you heal from the tooth extraction and/or bone grafting, your dentists will implant the metal rod into your jaw. The healing process from this procedure may take weeks to months depending on your unique circumstances.

At the next stage, your dentist will place an abutment, which extends into the tooth itself. With molds made of your teeth, your dentist will install the final tooth over the abutment. Depending upon your body’s ability to heal, these stages may be combined or separated into any number of appointments. By the end of the experience, though, you’ll have a beautiful smile once again.

What Happens During Recovery?

As with most surgeries, some discomfort should be expected during the healing process and between each stage. Though it isn’t guaranteed you will experience all of them, you should expect to have gum swelling, gum bruising, pain and some bleeding. As always, contact your dentist if these discomforts are too much. Medications may be necessary.

To keep the pain and tenderness at a minimum, eat softer foods for the next few days to weeks. Eating cold foods on the day of surgery and warm food in the following days can cut the soreness. Be sure to follow all your dentist’s post-surgical instructions to ensure proper healing.

Smile More Often

Don’t let gum disease, tooth loss or other dental discomfort keep you from feeling confident in your smile. To learn more about dental implants, contact Ballas Dental Care online or call (314) 432-5544.