Do you need a tooth replacement that requires a dental implant? Are you debating whether to get a single crown with an implant or a dental bridge? Clinton Dental Center is here to help you understand what to expect when getting a dental implant so that you can make an informed decision about your oral care.
Reasons to Get a Dental Implant
Dental implants secure crowns, bridges, and dental arches directly to your jawbone. Traditional bridges attach to neighboring teeth to “bridge” the gap from a missing tooth. With a dental implant, you don’t have to compromise any surrounding teeth.
Dental implants prevent gum erosion and extend the life of replacement teeth. They create friction in your jawbone that mimics your natural teeth roots. This friction fortifies the jaw to protect your smile as a whole. Dental implants may cost slightly more than other tooth replacement procedures, but they perform significantly better over time.
Dental Implant Installation from Start to Finish
Every dental implant procedure is personalized to fit the patient’s needs. Thus, your experience may be slightly different than the steps listed below. Here is a basic overview of what to expect when you get a dental implant:
- Complete a consultation with an oral surgeon to determine if you are a good candidate for a dental implant. The surgeon will review your oral health and long-term goals to determine which path works best for you. If your natural tooth can be salvaged, that may be a better option than getting a dental implant.
- Get your tooth removed to make room for the dental implant. If the tooth is already gone, you may not need an extraction.
- Get your dental implant, abutment, and temporary crown. This may happen during the extraction, but most patients need time to heal before getting their initial implant. If you need a bone graft to thicken your jaw before the implant, that may be a separate appointment.
- Let your gums heal and adjust. You will have your temporary crown for a few months while your gums heal around your implant and abutment. The abutment is the part that screws into the implant and holds your crown in place.
- Get a color–matched crown on your dental implant. Once your implant is fully healed, you can get your new crown and abutment. Your dentist will custom-fit a crown that blends in with your smile and sits properly in your bite. If the crown is not the right fit, they will make the necessary adjustments before securing it to the abutment.
- Follow the aftercare instructions from your dentist. The adhesive securing your crown to the implant needs time to cure. Follow your dentist’s instructions for eating and brushing for the day.
Once your dental implant is fully healed, you can brush, floss, and eat like you would with your natural teeth.
Daily Life with a Dental Implant
One of the biggest perks to getting a dental implant is that the replacement tooth feels like part of your natural smile. You may want to avoid eating chewy candies on that side of your smile because they can pull on your crown. Other than that, you can clean your smile like normal and see your dentist for annual teeth cleanings.
For more information about getting a dental implant or caring for your dental implant, contact Clinton Dental Center at (586) 949-5363.