A patient will need to get dental implant surgery if they are looking to replace one or more teeth with implants. Implants are one of the popular ways to replace missing teeth. They make for an artificial tooth that looks and feels just like a real one. An implant also provides other benefits:
- It is a permanent tooth replacement prosthetic that can last a lifetime.
- It does not require special maintenance like dentures do.
- It does not get in the way of oral hygiene, as bridges can.
- It prevents the loss of bone tissue, which is one of the negative effects of having a missing tooth.
- It keeps the remaining teeth properly aligned.
What happens when getting implants
The process of getting dental implants usually starts with an evaluation. The dentist examines the patient's mouth to ensure it is generally healthy and the bone tissue needed to hold implants is present. The dentist typically will also review the patient's medical history since certain health issues like diabetes can make implant installation a bit tricky. So can habits that weaken the immune system, such as smoking tobacco products and excessive alcohol consumption.
Once the patient has been cleared for dental implant surgery, the dentist can draw up a customized treatment plan. The patient may be referred to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon if needed.
The dentist will also go over the cost of the treatment during the evaluation before deciding on a date for the surgery. Not all insurance policies cover the installation of implants so patients should check with providers to figure out how much the out-of-pocket cost will be.
Preparing for dental implant surgery
The dentist will provide instructions on how the patient should prepare for the surgery. All these directions should be followed carefully to help ensure it goes smoothly. As well, after the surgery, patients should show up for all follow-up appointments scheduled by the dentist.
To begin with, the patient may be directed to abstain from eating prior to the surgery, depending on the type of anesthetic the dentist plans to use. If general anesthesia is being used, fasting helps to prevent complications since the patient's gag reflex is inhibited under anesthesia.
Patients are advised to get lots of sleep prior to surgery. Being well-rested helps with the recovery period. The patient should also take any sedatives and antibiotics as recommended by the dentist. For comfort, go to the appointment wearing loose, comfortable clothes.
Prior to the surgery, patients should prepare soft foods. Making stuff earlier allows someone to take it easy during the recovery period. Dentists typically recommend foods like pasta, smoothies and soups during recovery as they are less likely to irritate the surgical site. Soups should be consumed warm, not hot. Patients going for same-day implants are advised to stick to liquid foods for the first week after the surgery, then soft foods for the next few months.
Ready for dental implants?
By preparing appropriately for dental implant surgery, you can help ensure a faster and more effective recovery process. Enjoy your replacement teeth as soon as possible by following the dentist's instructions.
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