Did you know that more than 36 million Americans live with complete tooth loss, with 120 million missing at least one tooth, according to the American College of Prosthodontists (ACP)? Tooth loss can affect one’s oral health and appearance, but it can also lead to other health risks, such as heart disease, stroke, and forms of cancer. Tooth loss can occur for many reasons, such as decay, injury, gum disease, and more. Fortunately, there is a simple and permanent fix for replacing missing teeth!
Dental Implants Can Save Your Smile
A dental implant is a permanent tooth root replacement that holds artificial teeth in place. It’s a great option for those who have lost one or several teeth, and it has many benefits, such as:
- Looks and functions just like natural teeth
- Comfortable fit
- Long-lasting and durable
- Promotes jaw bone health
- Supports facial muscles
- Lowers risk of additional tooth loss
- Lowers risk of periodontal (gum) disease and other conditions
If your dentist just told you that you'd benefit from dental implants, you may be wondering how long the treatment process will take. Fortunately, we have outlined the dental implant process so you can know what to expect before, during, and after treatment. Depending on your oral health and unique case, De Pere's dental implants can take as little as 4-6 months or up to 12 months.
Timeline for Dental Implants in De Pere
This is a general timeline of the dental implant process. However, it’s important to note that everyone’s treatment is different, and each patient’s timeline depends on one’s lifestyle, oral health, any necessary pre-treatments, and the healing process.
Your Initial Consultation – 1 Day
Dr. Yenchesky reviews your medical history and performs a thorough oral exam to determine if you are a good candidate for dental implants. This initial consultation is to make sure your mouth is healthy enough to support the implant properly. Then, per Dr. Yenchesky’s approval, we will schedule your implant procedure.
He will take an impression of your mouth. This helps determine the most suitable placement and method of placement, and the best part? No sticky goop—everything is digital, clean, and easy!
Optional Pre-Treatment – 3-12 Months
Some patients may need a gentle tooth extraction or bone grafting to ensure the best outcome of the dental implant procedure. Recovery from these pre-treatments can take several months, depending on your unique situation and oral health.
Implant Placement – 1-2 Weeks
One to two weeks after your initial consultation, your implant can be placed. After your dentist numbs the area, he gently places the implant directly into the gum and jaw bone so the implant can have a stable foundation. Once the implant is placed, the area is cleaned and sealed shut to promote healing.
Healing and Recovery – 3-6 Months or Longer
Healing from dental implant placement can take anywhere between three to six months. The goal during this stage is to ensure the implant fuses to the jaw bone (osseointegration), so it can become a natural part of your mouth. The implant is durable because it’s made from surgical-grade titanium, and it’s also biocompatible so that it can live safely and comfortably in the body.
Crafting Your Custom Restorations – During Healing and Recovery
This stage takes place during the recovery process. While you recover from the placement procedure, your dentist builds the implant. To start, he takes digital impressions and images of your teeth, gums, and the implant, and then he sends this information to our dental lab partners so they can craft your restoration, such as dental crowns. In the meantime, your dentist will give you a temporary crown so you can still eat, speak, smile, and laugh with comfort.
Abutment Placement – 1-2 Weeks
A week or two before your last appointment, the dentist will place the abutment, which connects to the implant and holds your dental crowns in place.
Placing Your Custom Restorations - 1 Day
A couple of weeks after the abutment has been placed, you will come in for your final dental implant appointment. Your dentist will make sure your permanent restoration fits the implant and everything functions as it should. He then bonds the restoration into place, and voila—your new smile is complete!
How Do I Care for My Dental Implant?
After your procedure, you must make sure you take good care of your new smile, just as you would your natural smile. Dental implants are low-maintenance because they are permanent, do not need to be removed like dentures, and can be cleaned like natural teeth.
To maintain the health and appearance of your dental implants, you must practice excellent oral hygiene and visit your dentist regularly. For example, twice-daily brushing and once-daily flossing keep your implants plaque-free, clean, and fresh. Regular dental visits allow your dentist to keep an eye on your oral health and the condition of your implants so they can truly last for decades or even a lifetime.
Are You Ready to Get Started with Dental Implants in De Pere?
Fox View Dental provides exceptional dental care to patients of all ages, and we take pride in helping individuals and families discover their healthiest smiles. Dental implants in De Pere are one of the many excellent options we offer for restoring one’s oral health and appearance.
If you are interested in learning more about the dental implant process, please contact us at our De Pere dental office.
We look forward to seeing you smile!