The 4 Steps Of The Dental Implant Process

If you are interested in the use of dental implants to replace your missing or damaged teeth, you should know that this is not a procedure that can be completed in a single visit to your dentist's office. In fact, this procedure will need to be completed over the course of several months and multiple visits. Below you can learn more about each of the four steps involved in the dental implant process so that you will know exactly what to expect.

Step #1: Take Molds And X-Rays 

Once you and your dentist have agreed to move forward with your desire for dental implants, the first step in the process of making this desire a reality is to have molds and x-rays taken of your entire mouth. These molds and images will be used for a variety of purposes such as determining whether or not you will require bone grafts in order to improve the density of your jawbone before undergoing surgery. These molds will also be used to allow for the construction of both your temporary and permanent tooth replacements. This step can usually be completed in one visit to your dentist.

Step #2: Complete Any Necessary Extractions And Bone Grafts

The next step in the process will be to prepare your mouth for the implants. This is done by completing any necessary bone grafts and tooth extractions. Depending upon how extensive the work is that you need done, this process may require multiple trips to the dentist to complete. 

If you are having teeth extracted as part of this step, your dentist will likely provide you with a temporary tooth replacement at this stage of the process in order to prevent you from being without teeth until the process is complete. This temporary replacement will often be a bridge or denture depending upon how many teeth you are having replaced by implants.

Step #3: Surgically Place Implants

This is the most invasive step in the process as it involves the actual placement of your implants into your jaw. While this is considered dental surgery, this step of the process will also be completed during a single visit to your dentist's office and will take place on an outpatient basis. During this surgical procedure, your implants will be placed into the tooth sockets in your jaw through very small incisions in your gums. 

You will need to heal completely from this step before being able to move on to the final step in the process. This is very important since as your jawbone heals around the implants, the bone will provide the implants with the same natural strength as real teeth. Since no two people heal at exactly the same rate, how long this step takes will vary from person to person.

Step #4: Attach Dental Crowns

After you have successfully healed from your surgery, it will be time for the final step in the process. This step involves attaching your permanent dental crowns to your implants. This step is not at all invasive and should not require any healing or downtime once the procedure is complete.