Dental implants are a permanent tooth replacement option, and many dentists recommend this treatment if a patient has missing teeth. This procedure consists of three parts, including an implant rod, abutment and restoration crown and one of the many benefits of dental implants is their resemblance to natural teeth. In addition to looking just like your real teeth, dental implants also act and feel like natural teeth, which means you will be able to eat, speak and smile confidently. 

If you think your smile can benefit from dental implants, your dentist in Tavistock will first schedule a consultation to discuss the healing stages and what you can expect after surgery. They will provide you with details regarding:

The Beginning Stages

During your consultation, the dentist will first assess your mouth and jawbone to determine if you are a suitable candidate for dental implants. Not every patient is able to receive this surgery, and if you have insufficient jawbone health or density, you may need a bone graft or sinus lift before you get implant placement. If you have a severely damaged tooth, it may need to be removed prior to receiving the implant. 

Every patient is different, and the dentist will discuss your case specifically and what needs to be done in order to proceed with dental implant surgery. They will create a plan and will share details regarding the next steps. 

Implant Surgery

You will receive a local anesthetic to numb the mouth and will not feel anything during your surgery. The dentist will make a small incision in the gum tissue to expose the underlying jawbone and will drill a small hole in the bone to screw in the titanium post. The last step of this phase is suturing and packing the gum with gauze. 

Implant Post Healing

Once the initial surgery is complete, the site will have to heal, and this can take up to two weeks. Following your dentist’s aftercare instructions will help speed up the recovery process, and you may be asked to modify your diet, keep your head elevated and use saltwater to rinse out your mouth. 

The only way to move on to the next step is for osseointegration to occur, which means the implant post must fuse to your jawbone to create a stable foundation for abutment and restoration. This can take anywhere from 8 weeks to 9 months to heal, and this duration will depend on your immune system and the number of implants you require. It will vary from one patient to another, but maintaining a proper oral hygiene routine will help keep your mouth clean and will reduce the possibility of implant rejection or infections. Do your best to brush and floss twice a day but avoid brushing over the surgical site to prevent bleeding and unnecessary irritation. 


After your implant fuses, a second minor surgery will be performed to connect the abutment to the implant post. The dentist will then close the gum tissue around the implant, and the healing portion for this step can take up to a month, although many patients will heal after about 2 weeks. 

Mild pain and swelling are very normal during this time, and you can take over-the-counter medicine to reduce pain and inflammation. Ice packs can also be applied to the side of your face if you are experiencing discomfort. 

Restoration Placement

You will receive the final restoration when the area around the abutment has fully healed. You will have to visit your dentist to get impressions of your teeth near the site to ensure the replacement implant is a perfect match for your natural teeth. You will leave your appointment with a new and improved smile once the prosthesis is on the abutment and connected to the dental implant rod. 

After Dental Implant Surgery

It can take up to 6 months for the integration of the jawbone and complete healing. Dental implant surgery has a very high success rate, and your dentist will provide you with detailed aftercare instructions. If you experience intense pain after your surgery or soreness that does not go away, you need to contact your dentist, and the same is true if you experience swelling, or inflammation of gum tissue or notice implant exposure. 

Recovery Tips

It is a must that you get lots of rest. Sleep often, and do not push yourself too hard because your body needs rest after dental implant surgery. You should eat only foods that are soft and nutritious, and if you notice swelling during the first few days, apply an ice pack wrapped in cloth. 

Dentists will also ask you to rinse your mouth with warm salt water up to 4 times a day, clean the site of surgery and practice daily oral hygiene. 

Why consider dental implants?

Dental implants are very popular because in addition to improving the look of your smile, they will also preserve the health of your surrounding bone and gums and keep your jawbone from shrinking as a result of bone loss. Dental implants will restore your ability to chew and will help keep adjacent teeth stable. You will not hesitate to smile and will not feel shy or embarrassed while attending social gatherings. 

The process of dental implant healing stages may seem long, but you must consider the many benefits you will enjoy. This dental treatment has the power to improve your overall quality of life, and in addition to being able to eat all of the foods you love, dental implants will also support your overall health. 

Considering Dental Implants? Contact Tavistock Family Dentistry Today!

Are you interested in learning more about dental implants? Tavistock Family Dentistry can provide you with more information. We will discuss how we can improve your smile and are always available to answer questions or address your concerns. Contact our dental clinic today to schedule a consultation!

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