What to Expect During your Dental Implant Procedure


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It is extremely important to be fully aware of the procedure you are about to undergo. This section will give you a general overview of what to expect but be sure to ask your dentist able your specific treatment as very patient is different. Do not be embarrassed to book another further consultation if you have any qualms or queries about your dental implant procedure. Knowing exactly what to expect will allow your surgery to be far less frightening and an altogether better experience.

Before Treatment

Prior to treatment it is standard practice to be sent a pack of information detailing exactly what your treatment will entail. It should outline the current condition of your teeth and gums and describe the treatment stages you will go through.

You may need to take some extra measures if you are going to be given any form of sedation or placed under general anaesthesia. These will include fasting for a period of time before treatment (up to 24 hours) and arranging for someone to drive you home. These measures will vary depending on your treatment and your dentist will explain these to you before your procedure.

The surgery is usually carried out under local anaesthesia. If you are particularly nervous though, or if your procedure is going to take a very long time, your dentist may use sedation. Once you are anaesthetised your dentist can begin the surgery.

During Treatment

The next step is for your dentist to lift the gum where the implant is going to be placed by cutting to make a small flap. When the gum is lifted a hole is drilled into the jawbone with the same diameter as the titanium implant, at the exact spot the implant is going. The titanium dental implant is then inserted into the drilled hole, and should fit very tightly. This is effectively a bolt into which the post will be screwed later on. Once the implant is in the flap of gum is put back and stitched up.

If you are having delayed placement implants, you will now need to wait around four to six weeks for your gum to fully heal. Once this has happened, you will need to return to your dentist to have your tooth replacement attached to your dental implant.

If you are having an immediate loading implant your dentist will then attach your replacement tooth to your implant before finishing your surgery.

Immediately After Treatment

If you have been given just a local anesthetic you can leave as soon as the treatment is complete. You may be advised to avoid eating until the numbing effect has worn off. This is to ensure you do not bite or injure your mouth without realising.

If you have been given a sedative you will need to wait until your practitioner judges that you are awake and aware enough to leave safely. You will need to be taken home by another person as you will not be able to drive or operate heavy machinery for 36 hours after sedation

If you have undergone a general anesthetic you will need to remain in hospital for a number of hours in order for your practitioner to make sure you have made a full recovery and have not suffered any complications from the anesthetic. Once you have been given a clean bill of health you will be allowed to leave but must be driven home by someone else. It is very likely that you will be either given prescription painkillers or advised to take over-the-counter painkillers after treatment. This is because the area is likely to be sore and uncomfortable for a few days. If you experience swelling you can use an ice pack to reduce the effect.

You may also be advised not to drink any hot drinks such as tea or coffee, eat any spicy food, or drink alcohol for 48 hours after your dental implant treatment It is also possible that your dentist will have further instructions, specific to your case. Take note of them and follow them precisely to ensure your full recovery.


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Guide to Dental Implants in London & the UK