The 5 Step Process Of Getting Dental Implants

The use of dental implants to replace missing teeth requires a five-step process. This process takes place over the course of several months and will require multiple visits with your dentist. In this article, you can learn more about each of the five steps involved in this process so that you can know what to expect next on your journey to getting dental implants

Step #1: Take Dental Molds  

Your dentist will need to take molds of your existing teeth as well as your gums and surrounding tissue. This allows them to have dental crowns fabricated that match the size and shape of your natural teeth. This ultimately ensures that your smile will both look and feel natural once the dental implant procedure is completed. These molds can be taken in a matter of minutes and will not require any local or general anesthetic. 

Step #2: Complete Bone Grafts And Tooth Extractions 

Some patients will require bone grafts in order to ensure their jawbone is strong enough to support dental implants. Patients with existing teeth that are going to be replaced by implants will also need to have these teeth extracted prior to moving forward with the implant procedure. Since patients will need time to heal after these procedures, it is quite common for dentists to offer dentures or dental bridges which can be used temporarily until the implant procedure is completed. 

Step #3: Surgically Place Implants

This step of the process will be performed by an oral surgeon and will require you to be placed under general anesthesia. During this surgical procedure your implants will be placed into the jawbone and a post will be attached to them that reaches above the gums. This post is what your crown will eventually be attached to. You will need to have someone attend this appointment with you since you will be unable to drive after the procedure. 

Step #4: Allow Jaw To Heal

This step in the process is simply a waiting game. During this step your jaw will be undergoing the natural healing process and will begin to grow around your recently placed implants. Unfortunately, this step can take anywhere from several weeks to several months. The amount of time this step takes will vary widely since everyone heals at their own individual pace. You may need to visit your dentist multiple times during this step so that they can take x-rays to check on the progression of your healing. 

Step #5: Attach Dental Crowns

Once your dentist has determined that your jawbone is adequately healed, a dental crown will be attached to your implants to replace each tooth you are missing. These crowns will have been fashioned using the molds taken in the first step of this process and therefore will provide you with both a beautiful and natural looking smile.