When you’ve lost a tooth, it can make you self-conscious. Not only that but the gap created can be a breeding ground for plaque and the absence of a tooth can affect the structure of your face.
Whether you’ve lost a tooth through trauma or decay, dental implants provide exceptional support to replacement teeth, restoring your confidence and improving your oral health. But what are implants, and what do you need to know before you get the procedure?
This guide will answer some of the most common questions we get asked.
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are small titanium screws that are anchored into your jaw. They act as replacements for the root of a missing tooth. Through a process called osseointegration, the biocompatible implant will fuse with your jaw, providing your replacement tooth with unparalleled rigidity and support.
Dental implants can be capped with a natural-looking crown or bridge. We can place single implants or All-on-4 implants. All-on-4s allow you to replace up to an entire arch of teeth using just four implants for support.
How Long Do Implants Last?
One of the great things about dental implants is that they should last as long as your natural teeth, provided they are cared for properly. Brush up on your cleaning routine, make regular dental hygiene appointments, and pop in and see us for a checkup twice a year and we’ll make sure your implants keep you smiling for many decades to come.
How Long Is the Dental Implant Procedure?
Placing conventional implants may require several procedures. Each appointment could last a couple of hours. With Same Day Teeth, however, we can place temporary teeth that day. Once your gums have settled, we’ll place your permanent restorations.
During your initial consultation, we’ll take all the necessary scans of your teeth and jaws and give you an idea of what you can expect in your specific circumstance.
What Happens If Your Jaw Can’t Take the Implant?
In some cases, when you’ve lost a tooth, the underlying jaw that used to support it will start to deteriorate. This process is called resorption and it happens because the jaw no longer gets the stimulation it needs. If there has already been significant bone loss, your jaw may not have the required density to take an implant.
But that doesn’t mean you can’t have dental implants. What we’ll usually do in this situation is to carry out a bone graft or sinus lift. These procedures build up the bone, providing the density needed to carry out the implant procedure.
It can take several months for your bone to heal; however, the procedure is worth it because getting dental implants can be life-changing.
How Long Does it Take to Recover After the Implant Procedure?
Recovery times vary depending on whether you need a bone graft before, and if you’re having regular dental implants or Same Day Teeth.
Recovery involves the gums healing and the implant fusing to the bone. Osseointegration can often take several months.
What Can You Eat After Getting Dental Implants?
Immediately after the procedure, the surgical area will be quite tender and you won’t be able to chew. Avoid food that takes a lot of chewing such as steak, raw vegetables, bagels, or anything crunchy. Spicy and acidic foods should also be avoided.
For the first few days, you’ll need to stick to soft foods like cold soup, cottage cheese, yoghourt, and ice cream straight after the surgery. Avoid using a straw as the suction pressure can hamper the healing process.
Gradually, you’ll be able to introduce foods such as ommlettes, rice, ground mince, and pasta. As you start to bring these items back into your diet, try and chew on the opposite side of your mouth to the implant wherever possible.
Eventually, once everything has healed, you’ll be able to eat anything you want with confidence. Unlike many dentures, your implants will hold steady in your mouth while you chew.
Schedule Your Implant Consultation Today
We understand that getting dental implants is a major commitment, and you’ll have lots of questions. We’ll be more than happy to answer these during your initial consultation. Get in touch today and arrange your appointment at our Beaconsfield clinic.