A dental implant is the most versatile, effective, and comprehensive dental replacement options available today to replace a missing tooth. It is suitable and worth choosing than the traditional dental bridges and dentures. However, before you opt-in for a dental implant, it is important that you understand what you are committing yourself to and how much time dental implants would take to heal up before you can have your teeth. Typically, the process can take about 6 to 8 months to be completely healed.
Nobody can tell exactly how long it would take for a dental implant to heal. This is because there are several internal and external factors that may affect the healing process, thereby reducing or increasing the recovery time. For instance, the recovery process would possibly be longer if you undergo a bone graft. If the bone is extracted from your own body, it would heal faster and better than when it is a synthetic bone or when taken other sources – animal or cadaver.
Also, if the bone is in a particle form, it will heal faster than when it is in a block form. The healing time is also affected by the amount of blood that is supplied to the areas of the dental implant surgery. More so, the older the patient, the longer the healing time would be and vice versa. Whether you’re getting mini implants or traditional implants will as well affect your healing time.
One of the popular misconceptions of dental implants is that you can have a tooth on the same day on any dental implant and another misconception is that it takes between 6 months to a year before healing process is completed. Actually, healing time largely depends on how hard or soft your bone is. Generally, the lower jaw bone is stronger than the upper jaw bone and how hard the bone is would determine how fast the healing time would be. Hence, if you undergo a dental implant surgery on your lower jaw, it would heal faster than when you have it on your upper jaw.
Also, dental implants on the front teeth would heal faster than the dental implants on the back teeth. This is because the bite and chewing force that is generated in the back teeth is much higher than that generated in the front teeth.
For you to have a have an understanding of how long the healing process might take here is a list of various steps involved during dental implant procedures:
If you need to undergo bone grafting, a waiting period of about 4 to 6 months may be required before you continue with the next process.
However, if bone grafting is not required, but still have to undergo tooth extractions. You would still have to wait for some period for the gum injury to heal up. Though, some dentists may insert the dental implants immediately after the tooth extractions so as to eliminate the need for double healing time. A healing cap is normally fastened onto the dental implants before the gum tissue is stitched together. Depending on your health, this process can take about a week to heal up.
A second stage of the dental implant surgery is then carried out after about 4 to 6 months. By now, your bone would have fully integrated with the implant post. While the healing cap is left exposed, the gum around it is stitched. As the gum heals up, it molds to the shape of the healing cap. Once your gum is healed completely and osseointegration is finished, your dentist would remove the healing cap and fix the abutment that would secure the replacement teeth or tooth.
Dental implant gets its support and durability from a process known as Osseointegration. Osseointegration is the process of integrating dental implants into your jaw bone. During this process, the bone cells fuse onto the surface of the dental implants to form a strong bond, while the dental implant becomes part of the jaw bone. This process normally takes time to be successfully conducted – this time also varies for each patient. If all the dental implants procedures go well without any complication during or after the process, the average recovery period should be at most a week. However, osseointegration occurs slowly over time and can take between 2 to 6 months to be completed.
How to Care For Your Dental Implants after Surgery
Here are some tips on how to care for your dental implants after surgery:
- There may be oozing, pain, persistent bleeding, and swelling after the dental plant surgery, which may cause some discomfort. But this should subside within the first 24 to 48 hours.
- You may apply moist heat and pain medication to decrease the healing time.
- Eat soft foods for the first few days and avoid doing any strenuous physical activity.
- Use a soft toothbrush and gently stroke your teeth to avoid damage to the dental sutures.
- Use special mouthwash to prevent dental bacteria.
- Rinse your mouth and gargle with warm salt water about 2 to 3 times daily.
- Remember, the implants are now part of your teeth. You should care for them just as you would your natural teeth.
- Ensure that you schedule a regular visit to your dentist.
By carrying out proper dental hygiene and right dental care, your dental implants would last you for a long time. Are you concerned about getting a dental implant? Visit us today to learn more from our dental surgeon.
After you’ve undergone dental implant surgery and you feel a sharp protrusion on the edge of your tooth/teeth, you shouldn’t feel bothered as this is normal, but if you feel concerned, feel free to call our office. More so, you may experience stiff jaw muscles, a sore throat, and dry lips, all these are normal signs of having gauze in your mouth and should leave after about 2 to 3 days after surgery.
Some foods that should be eaten after the oral surgery include Rice, Oatmeal, Noodles, Healthy juice or smoothies, Fish, Eggs, Bananas, Baked beans, Avocado, etc.
Some foods that should be avoided include Acidic foods, such as orange juice, limes, lemon, tomatoes, etc.; Hard foods, such as apples, nuts, and chips; Popcorn; Spicy foods (they may cause a sort of discomfort).
By now, you would have known how much time dental implants would take to heal up before you can have your teeth and how to care for your dental implants after surgery to make the healing process easier and faster. If you need more dentists’ recommendations, or you have any question relating to dental implant procedures, don’t hesitate to call our office today.