Dental implants provide phenomenal benefits when it comes to replacing missing teeth. However, dental implants require a timed process in order to be successful. They are by no means a quick solution for missing teeth. However, they provide the most natural, long-term success than any other tooth replacement alternative.
Getting a dental implant involves the surgical placement of the implant or titanium post followed by a healing period before the final implant restoration is placed on top.
The downtime that you will experience after dental implant surgery depends on several factors:
- Your age?
- Your health condition?
- How many dental implants are needed?
- Where the implants are located within your mouth?
- Was tooth extraction needed?
- Is bone grafting necessary prior to implant placement?
For patients simply having one implant, you should be able to return to work the very next day. Multiple implants, between 8 and 10, may require a few days of downtime. Younger patients typically heal faster than older patients, and of course those in good health will benefit from a quicker and more comfortable recovery as well. Someone who smokes or is diabetic can expect a longer recovery period. Most patients experience some soreness and a soft foods diet may be recommended initially.
Remember that while your downtime may be minimal and your soreness will typically dissipate within a few days, your implants are still healing. After your implants are placed, they undergo a process called osseointegration, where the titanium post (a bio-compatible metal) fuses to the jawbone. This is a critical stage for your dental implant success. Overall, dental implants typically heal in about 4-6 months. The upper bite generally heals a little slower than the bottom due to the difference in bone type. If bone grafting was performed, the healing period is extended.
Recovery from dental implants can vary from patient to patient and from one implants surgeon to the next. If you have questions about what to expect during your specific dental implants case, Dr. Wayne Suway will gladly consult with you. Although it may seem like a lengthy process to get dental implants, they are an investment that can bring a lifetime of success and restore your smile in the most natural way.