A lot of patients are afraid of the dentist. A major stigma associated with dentistry is the pain that patients have to endure during their procedures. The same fear applies to dental implant therapy. Luckily, many stereotypes about dentists and dentistry in general are just not true. In this article we are going to tackle many questions including what dental implants are, if they hurt during or after the procedure is completed, and what you can expect during your recovery period. If you are on desktop, just hover your mouse over the pictures for the answers to the questions. On mobile, just click on the pictures below.
A dental implant is a screw shaped titanium rod that is inserted into your jawbone. This rod acts analogously to the roots of your teeth. After the insertion surgery, a chemical connection will be formed between your bone tissue and the screw shaped implant. This process of integration takes around 3-4 months to complete. Afterwards an abutment and crown are fabricated and seated on top of the implant through a series of appointment. Once the implant crown is installed, the treatment process is considered completed.
Remember that dental implants are now the #1 tooth replacement option across the country. As dental bridges were once considered the primary option for a fixed tooth replacement, many people are now preferring implants as they last longer, are easier to maintain, and do not require the grinding of adjacent teeth structures to help fabricate them.
Does dental implant surgery hurt?
The surgery does not hurt at all. The start of your appointment will begin with a local anesthetic to numb the area where the dental implant will be inserted. This portion of the appointment will be slightly uncomfortable. Afterwards you will be numb, and the only sensations you will feel during your treatment is pressure and vibrations from the instruments used to install your dental implant. The entire process to insert the rod will taken around thirty minutes.
Many people that think the dental implant procedure is going to be painful are pleasantly surprised how smooth the procedure went after they are done. If a well-skilled clinician is undertaking your surgery you should have minimal discomfort during and after your procedure.
How long does the pain last after a dental implant?
There will be slight discomfort after your procedure is completed. There may also be some swelling in the area where the dental implant was placed. Your dentist will place you on antibiotics and pain medications after your procedure is completed. This will speed up your recovery process and prevent any infections that may brew up after the procedure. Expect to be sore in the area for a period of one week.
It’s prudent to remember that everyone heals differently. Some patients take longer to heal after a surgical procedure like an implant placement while others recover more quickly. The good news is, no matter how long your body takes to heal, the discomfort level is never too great with dental implant surgery.
Do they put you to sleep for the dental implant procedure?
Some people have extreme dental phobia, and choose to be sedated for their surgical procedure. There are many sedation options your dentist can give you, but the main one that most people choose is IV Sedation. In this case, a catheter is inserted into your vein where medicines given through an IV line enter your bloodstream putting you to sleep for your procedure. Once the treatment is completed, you will have no memory or recollection of the procedure, so it is a huge benefit for those who suffer from high levels of anxiety.
Remember that a thorough medical history will be reviewed by your dental team prior to sedating you. If there are any contraindications they will let you know. Also remember that there will be instructions to follow to prepare for your appointment. If you are to be sedated you likely be asked to not have any food or water in your system 8 hours prior to your treatment.