Dental Implants

Dental Implants Procedure

Implants can be ideal for missing teeth, as they are comfortable, natural looking and function well. Missing teeth can cause discomfort, embarrassment, and problems with chewing and speaking, so our dentist restores them with this restoration that has a post acting as a tooth root and a crown that blends in with your smile.

Dental implants are lasting, stable tooth replacements that can be used to replace one missing tooth, several missing teeth or complete arches of teeth. The dental implant post, which is a screw made of titanium, is surgically placed in the jawbone at the site of the missing tooth. It replaces the missing tooth root and ensures that your dental restoration is stable. A period of healing is then often required to allow the bone to begin to bond with the biocompatible post.

Following a healing period our dentist will then place the final prosthetic. Depending on which teeth are missing and your personal dental needs, your implant restoration might be a dental crown, dental bridge, or a complete or partial denture. 

Woman with a big smile being shown a dental model.

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Frequently Asked Questions

On average, it takes about 4 to 6 months for the implant post to fully heal and fuse to the jawbone to the point where the final tooth replacement fixture can be placed. This recovery time can be longer depending on what needs to be done during the dental implant surgery (bone grafts, etc.).

Dental implants may not seem like they are worth it when you consider the cost, the surgery, and the long recovery time, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. The fact is that dental implants are the longest lasting solution for tooth replacement that actually cost less in the long term when you factor in maintenance and replacement costs of other solutions (dental bridges, dentures, etc.), and the lost income from missing work for those dental appointments.

Dental implants also help to preserve gum tissue and protect against bone degradation that occurs when teeth are lost, helping you maintain better oral health. It is a big decision, and a large commitment, but ultimately the best solution for tooth replacement.

You should not chew on anything with the surgical side for at least an 48 hour after your surgery. After that, be sure to only eat soft foods that aren’t too hot or cold for the first 2 weeks on the surgical site. Do not drink out of a straw for at least 24 hours after the dental implant surgery. For the first few weeks following your surgery, you should avoid the following types of foods:

  • Tough foods like steak and other meats.
  • Hard foods such as apples and raw vegetables.
  • Crunchy foods where pieces can easily get lodged in your gums like chips or popcorn.
  • Sticky foods like gum, candy or caramel.

Failing to do so can cause the implant post to shift, requiring you to return to the clinic to have it reset. This will prolong your recovery time.

Dental implants are made to function exactly like a normal tooth. As such, food won’t get trapped under them. However, food can get trapped between the implant crown and a neighbouring tooth the same way it gets trapped between other teeth, so daily flossing is required to keep the implant crown clean and free of bacteria.

Not all patients are suitable candidates for dental implants. Patients with the following conditions are at greater risk of having a negative outcome such as an infection or implant rejection following their surgery. They could still be good candidates but will need to consult their doctor and take steps to improve their overall health before undergoing surgery.

  • Uncontrolled Diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Nicotine Addiction (Smokers)
  • Alcoholism
  • Uncontrolled Gum Disease

Other factors that could negatively impact the outcome of dental implant surgery include:

  • Obesity
  • Immunosuppressant Medications
  • Steroid Use
  • Excessive Jaw Clenching or Teeth Grinding