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What to expect when getting dental implants

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While the process of getting dental implants will be a little different for every patient, here is a basic overview of what to expect.

Initial evaluation

Before your oral surgeon can determine the best strategy for your dental implant procedure, a comprehensive examination will be completed. Depending on your oral health, you may be a candidate for implants right away, or you may require additional treatments first.

Bone grafting, if necessary

If your jawbone is not strong or large enough to support a dental implant, you may need a bone graft to add volume or density to the bone at the site of implant placement. Bone grafting uses natural or synthetic bone material to stimulate your jawbone into growing new, healthy bone tissue. Once your bone graft has healed, your jawbone will be ready to receive an implant.

Implant placement

Dental implant placement surgery is a minimally invasive procedure that is typically performed with local anesthesia. Your oral surgeon will create an incision in the gum tissue to expose the bone and then drill a hole for the implant to be screwed into. Once the implant is placed, you will begin the healing process.

The days after surgery

It is a good idea to take a little time off work following implant placement. Giving your body time to rest will improve your ability to heal. You should avoid strenuous activity for a few days. Just like any oral surgery, you will need to take care of the surgical site. Keeping your mouth clean during this time is important.


After placement is complete, your jawbone will begin to grow around the implant to become part of your natural gum line. This process is called osseointegration. The time required for osseointegration is different for every patient.

Abutment placement

Once your implant is stable, an abutment will be placed into the implant. An abutment is a piece that connects the implant to your crown. The abutment is tightened into place so that it stays secure when you eat. You will not feel anything during this procedure other than a little pressure.

Getting your new tooth

Once your gums have healed, you will be ready for the crown to be attached to the abutment. Your new tooth will be the same color as your natural teeth, so, after you leave the office, nobody will know you were missing a tooth.