At Brooks Landing Dental our Nanaimo dentists may place a dental implant as part of the process to replace a missing tooth to help you obtain a more natural-looking smile.
What is a Dental Implant?
A dental implant is a tiny titanium screw that functions similar to a natural tooth root. They can be used to replace a single lost tooth or numerous missing teeth.
The implant is surgically placed into the jaw bone. It then bonds with the natural bone to act as an anchor for a tooth replacement.
Dental implants can help to prevent surrounding teeth from moving, resolve bite issues or jaw joint pain, and help restore the appearance and facial tissues.
Why Replace Missing Teeth
When a tooth is missing, teeth surrounding the gap may begin to move out of place, resulting in misalignment issues. The jaw bone around the area could also begin to break down, leading to facial collapse or negatively impacting your ability to speak and chew.
The Dental Implant Procedure
To complete a dental implant procedure, your dentist will use a dental implant (titanium screw) and a tooth replacement such as a dental bridge, crown or denture.
To start, your dentist will surgically place the implant into your jaw bone below the gum tissue. As the tissue heals, the implant will bond with the bone and attach to the gum.
Once healing has occurred, typically 3 to 6 months post-surgery, you'll return to the office to have the procedure completed.
During this final appointment, a tooth replacement will be attached to the implant to help create the look and function of a natural tooth.
Dental Implant FAQs
Read the answers to our most frequently asked questions about dental implants at Brooks Landing Dental.
- How long does a dental implant last?
Provided your implant is cared for properly, it could last a lifetime. This includes proper brushing and flossing at home, in addition to attending dentist appointments for regular hygiene cleanings and exams.
A dental implant's longevity can also depend on other factors including nutrition, development of any dental diseases or genetics.
- How do I care for my dental implants?
Care for a dental implant just like you maintain your natural teeth.
Seeing your dentist for routine hygiene appointments and maintaining a proper brushing and flossing regimen at home go a long way to helping prevent diseases and decay from growing in the surrounding teeth and gums. This can negatively impact your dental implants.
- Does getting a dental implant hurt?
During your dental implant surgery, your dentist will provide anesthesia to help you feel comfortable, so you shouldn't feel any pain during the procedure.
After the procedure, patients do not typically experience much discomfort. Most can manage the pain with over-the-counter pain medication for a few days following the procedure.
You'll also need to eat a soft diet for the first couple of weeks to avoid any pain or irritation following the surgery.
- How long does the dental implant process take?
The entire procedure typically takes between two and nine months to complete, depending on your treatment plan.
Your dentist can provide you with a more precise timeline for your dental implant procedure based on your specific case.
- Will my insurance cover dental implants?
While some insurance companies will cover the cost of dental implants, others will only pay for part of the cost, and others will refuse to pay any portion of it.
To determine what percentage, if any, of your dental implant treatment would be covered by your insurance, confirm with your insurance provider.