If you’re debating your options for replacing missing teeth, you may have some apprehension about getting dental implants due to concerns about pain. But don’t let your fears steer you in the wrong direction. While there will be some discomfort in getting dental implants, the short-lived discomfort will be worth the long-term results.
At Houston Precise Dental Care, Joe Eckford Jr., DDS, specializes in dental implants, and he wants you to know what the process is and what you may experience, so you can make an informed decision about getting implants.
The dental implant process
A dental implant consists of three parts, and each part is placed over the space of a few months. The first step is to place the new root for your artificial tooth. In order to serve as a strong anchor, your new artificial root — which is made of titanium — is surgically placed into your jawbone and allowed to fuse with the bone.
Using general or local anesthesia, Dr. Eckford cuts through your gum, drills a hole in your jawbone, inserts the post below your gumline, and stitches up your gum. Dr. Eckford may provide you with a temporary denture to fill the gap while your new root fuses to your jawbone, which will take 3-6 months.
Once your new root is securely anchored to your jawbone, Dr. Eckford will conduct a second surgery to place the titanium abutment and your new artificial tooth. The abutment, which is secured to the top of your new root, will hold your new artificial tooth. Your new porcelain tooth will be the only thing seen above your gumline. Dr. Eckford will perform this procedure using local anesthesia.
The discomfort of getting a dental implant
The most discomfort you will feel will follow the placement of your artificial tooth root. The amount of discomfort you experience will likely be no worse than what you’d feel after getting your wisdom teeth removed. You may also experience some swelling and bruising in your face and gums. To ease your discomfort, Dr. Eckford will provide a prescription for pain medication.
You may feel the most discomfort during the first two days after surgery, with significant improvement by day three. Your pain, swelling, and bruising should continue to improve gradually until you feel like your usual self. As you heal, you will need to eat a diet of soft foods to prevent complications.
The benefits outweigh the discomfort
While you may experience some pain getting your implant, the benefits will be worth it. In addition to completing your smile, dental implants will also improve your oral health by helping prevent further tooth loss and deterioration of your jawbone. You can also eat whatever you want without pain or fear that your dentures will fall out. Dental implants may also improve your speech, so you won’t need to hide or feel uncomfortable in social situations.
Dental implants are also durable, and with regular visits to Dr. Eckford, they’ll last a lifetime.
To learn more about getting dental implants, book an appointment online or over the phone with Houston Precise Dental Care today.