Living with missing or damaged teeth can lead to personal and social discomfort. However, with dental implants, you no longer need to confine yourself to avoid public interactions. They offer an excellent solution for replacing missing teeth, as they look and feel just like natural ones. Moreover, they come without the trouble of potential toothaches! Naturally, people wonder, ‘How long does a dental implant take to complete?’ Read on to find out!
The Dental Implant Process
Dental implants serve as a permanent and durable solution for tooth loss and spoiled teeth. They involve multiple key steps for achieving the final outcome:
- Consultation: The dentist assesses your medical history and learns about your potential suitability for the surgery. It also involves addressing the patient’s concerns and creating a personalised treatment plan.
- Surgery: Once the dentist has gathered the necessary data for the patient’s treatment, the surgery takes place. It includes numbing the implant site with local anaesthesia, placing the implant into your jawbone through a surgical process and covering it for the healing period.
- Healing: The healing period begins immediately after the implantation. It involves waiting for 3 to 6 months for the implant to fuse with your jawbone. This period is crucial for building a strong foundation to support the artificial tooth.
- Restoration: Finally, once the healing period has passed, the dentist attaches the customised fake teeth, known as a crown, bridge, or denture, on top of the implant screw using a connector called an abutment.
Factors That Affect Duration
Individual healing period: Every individual’s body heals at its own pace. Factors like bone quality also affect the recovery process; a healthier bone structure may promote a faster healing time.
Number of implants: Each implant takes 1 to 2 hours to complete. Multiple implants will take more time, increasing the overall time required for the procedure.
Bone Grafting: Additional procedures, such as bone grafting to enhance bone density or structure before implant placement, will extend the time required for the overall procedure.
Customisation: After healing and jawbone integration, the dentist begins crafting custom replacement teeth (crown, bridge, or denture), a process that takes a few weeks. Once ready, these artificial teeth are placed onto the implant, with the dentist checking and adjusting for the best fit, appearance, and bite. These adjustments might affect the overall duration of the implant procedure.
Tips For Successful Healing
Taking care of your teeth and overall health is absolutely crucial for implant success. Often, implant failure is caused by deteriorated dental health. To prevent implant complications and ensure a timely recovery process, follow the tips below:
- Oral Hygiene: Gently brush your teeth and floss daily. Cleaning your teeth helps prevent bacteria and infections, ensuring a faster healing process.
- Lifestyle: Quit smoking, reduce excessive alcohol consumption, and avoid bruxism (biting hard on the implant site). These bad habits cause a delay in the healing process.
- Soft Diet: Say goodbye to hard, sticky, and highly acidic foods. Stick to a soft food diet instead. Consume healthy foods such as leafy greens, broths, nutrient-rich fruits, and vegetables to improve bone health and promote quicker healing.
- Dentist’s Advice: Following your dentist’s advice is super important for a successful implant procedure, whether it involves taking prescribed medications or antibiotics, or attending regular checkups.
We’ve covered everything regarding how long does a dental implant take to complete. Whether you’re planning to get them or already have them, talk to your dentist. They will guide you on caring for tooth implants to make them last for years to come. With proper care, you can not only shorten the healing process but also prolong their lifespan.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How long before dental implants feel normal?
It takes a few weeks to several months for dental implants to feel normal. However, the timeline varies from person to person, especially based on their commitment to following their dentist’s post-operative instructions, which helps implants feel more natural in your mouth.
- How long does a tooth implant take to heal?
It takes between 3 to 9, sometimes nearly a year, for a tooth implant to heal. The healing process may be quicker for some individuals and slower for others. Factors influencing the duration include a patient’s oral health, bone health, procedure complexity, and commitment to aftercare instructions.
- How long does it take to get a front tooth implant?
A single tooth implant typically takes 1 to 2 hours to complete, with a healing period of 3 to 6 months. Therefore, a front tooth implant follows a similar timeline. Your dentist will provide a dental implant timeline and treatment plan tailored to your specific needs.