A dental implant procedure is not a one visit process, typically taking several visits to one or more dental experts. As with any medical procedure, the first step is to find a qualified, skillful, and trustworthy surgeon to perform your dental implant procedure. Having a capable dentist can be the deciding factor of whether or not you will be pleased with the results.
First, the dentist will take x-rays of your mouth and perform a thorough oral examination. Typically, the dentist will administer a local anesthetic to ease any discomfort during the operation. A pilot hole is then bored into the jawbone, to allow for the placement of the implant. After the hole is drilled, the implant is inserted into position. The implant is left for around four months to fuse into the jawbone through a natural process known as Osseo integration.
After a few months, and when the implant has fused securely to the bone, the dentist will then attach the post to the implant. The post is the support for the synthetic replacement or replacements.
The last part of the procedure is known as the restorative phase. This is when the dentist will take impressions and create the necessary prosthesis that will attach to the implant or implants. This process normally take several visits in itself.
You may find that you will have to see several different dentists in order to complete your dental implant procedure. Periodontists and oral surgeons are both qualified to perform the first part of the process, placing the implant or implants. If a periodontist or oral surgeon is used to complete the implant procedure, then a restorative dentist will be required to complete the process during the later visits.
Implantologists are qualified to perform the entire procedure themselves, from beginning to end.
Overall, dental implant procedures have about a 90% success rate, and many last more than 20 years. With good oral hygiene, your dental implants can last you a lifetime. The success of your procedure also depends on the quality and quantity of bone available to the dental surgeon. The better the bone, and the more of it, the better the chances of a complete success.
The quality of the restorative prosthesis placed on top of the implant is also a major factor affecting the success of your procedure. If the design of the crown, over-dentures, or other prostheses are poorly constructed or poorly designed, the biting forces of the mouth will not be balanced and may cause complications in the future.
Who Does NOT Qualify for Dental Implants?
Some medical conditions or specific physical characteristics may make it impossible or dangerous to have a dental implant procedure performed. People who suffer from uncontrolled diabetes, parathyroid disorders, blood disorders, rare bone disorders, or bone marrow cancer should not consider getting dental implants. Also, those undergoing or who recently have undergone chemotherapy or other radiation therapy should avoid this procedure.
Some with certain physical characteristics such as insufficient or poor quality bone, low sinuses, or low nerve bundles may also not qualify for dental implant procedures.