One of the best ways to replace a missing tooth, or even several missing teeth, is by getting dental implants. A surgical procedure that requires several steps, dental implants are permanent tooth replacement options that not only restore the appearance of a full smile but also the function of tooth roots in the jaw. As with any surgery, it’s only natural to wonder just how painful it is to get a dental implant. Your dentist in St. Joseph is here to help ease your concerns.
What is Dental Implant Surgery?
Before we can discuss the pain levels involved with getting a dental implant, it’s important to look at the entire process as well as the benefits. Let’s start at the beginning.
The first phase of having an implant placed depends on each patient’s situation. Many times there is already a missing tooth, but other times a tooth needs to be extracted first. In some cases, the jawbone will need to be reinforced with a bone graft to support the implant. Once the area is sufficiently strong, the rest of the procedure can begin.
In this stage, the actual implant procedure begins. Your dentist in St. Joseph will insert a metal screw-like post into the jaw bone to serve as an artificial root. After it’s placed, there will be a waiting period to allow the bone to fuse to the post. This can take a few months but is a crucial step.
Once the implant post is stable and strong, your dentist will attach an abutment, which is where the crown will be attached. After confirming that the implant has integrated into the jaw successfully and the abutment is added, your dentist will craft a custom crown that looks exactly like a natural tooth.
Managing Pain Expectations During Dental Implant Treatment
There will be some pain associated with dental implant surgery, but this should only occur during recovery. Patients should not feel any discomfort during the actual procedure as they are either asleep or the area is thoroughly numbed. Many times patients will receive pain medication following surgery and they should expect to experience pain for around 10 days after treatment. If pain persists after 10 days, it’s important to contact your dentist in St. Joseph as soon as possible for a checkup.
Thanks to advancements in dental technology, dental implants are giving patients another relatively easy choice to replace missing teeth. As a result, many patients are opting for dental implants as opposed to removable tooth replacements like dentures.
If you have a missing tooth or two, or are at risk for losing teeth, talk to your dentist about dental implants to see if it may be right for you.