So, you’re getting a dental implant – and you may want to know: “how long is the dental implant process?” This encompasses the time for consultations, the procedure, and post-op recovery. Whether you are getting a mini or permanent implant, the process of tooth replacement is a delicate but important one for your oral health. In this article, we can walk you through the details of the dental implant process, so you will know what to expect.
Phase 1: The Fixture
The time it takes to place the fixture of your dental implant depends on 4 factors:
- Your dental health
- Your medical history
- The number of teeth being replaced
- Whether or not any teeth need to be extracted
Your oral surgeon will go over these details during your pre-surgery visit and consultation. It is important to know what exactly is going on during your surgery.
First, the implant fixture – the screw that holds the implant in place – is surgically placed into your jaw bone. After the titanium fixture is placed, your gum will be closed over the area of the implant. The fixture acts as a replacement teeth root. Generally, the fixture placement takes between 1-2 hours.
Phase 2: The Recovery
Recovery is typically the lengthier part of dental implant surgery. In between the bone graft (if you need one) and the implantation, you need to allow time for your jaw and gums to properly heal. After the surgical process is complete, follow your surgeon’s post-op care instructions carefully to ensure healing. They may recommend icing for swollen jaws, as well as brushing, flossing, rising, and finishing all of your medications.
Phase 3: The Abutment & Prosthesis
Because the implant fixture needs time to fuse with your jawbone, the third phase of your dental implant process will be scheduled 3-6 months following the initial placement. After your jawbone has healed and properly fused with the titanium fixture, your surgeon will place the “tooth” next. The abutment, if not already fused with the fixture, is set in place and capped with the prosthetic tooth crown. This procedure also takes between 1-2 hours. After this is complete, you’ll officially be done with your dental implant process.
How long is the dental implant process? Only as long as it needs to be! Dental implants take time, but the process is worth it for a bright and beautiful smile, as well as optimal oral health. If you are considering dental implants and want further information about the overall process, schedule an appointment with us today by calling (423) 296-8210.