Dental implants are structures, whether plastic or metal, that are inserted or interfaced on a jaw or bone of the skull to support a dental prosthesis. The Prosthesis could either be a crown or a bridge of your teeth. Dental implant is a complicated procedure and only a qualified and experienced medically trained person should perform it. Although dental implants are different, the procedure is almost the same. Below is a step by step process to insert a dental implant.
Making of an Incision
In this step, the thick part of your gingiva is surgically opened. The reason why incision is made at the thick area is because the implant should be supported by as many tissues as possible so that it does not become unstable. The flap, which are the edges of your opened gingiva are pushed back to expose your bone.
There is another procedure called a flapless procedure and in this procedure, a small tissue is completely extracted to create a complete space of the implant to be inserted. Flapless leads to loss of tissue so many people prefer the flap procedure because the tissue of gingiva remain and it also supports the implant.
Drilling of Your Bone
Drilling is done to create holes called pilot holes. The holes are known to create a base where the implant attachments will be inserted or installed. The holes are drilled at a very high speed to prevent excess heat from being generated. Excess heat promotes bone necrosis which could lead to the bone involved being compromised and extracted out. Soft tissues are not touched on drilling because severe injury and bleeding could occur and this could precipitate serious problems. Before drilling is done, proper aesthetic plans and measurements should be done for preciseness.
Expanding the Holes
One thing about above drilling step is that it creates very tiny holes because the drills are also tiny. To make sure the holes become patent and functional acceptable, drills with larger diameter are used or passed through the previous created holes.
Heat is generated under slow drilling but to prevent bone necrosis, a cooling saline is used. Bone overheating could result to osteoblasts damage or denaturing leading to bone problems which is not required. A cooling spray can be used in case there is no cooling saline so your bone can always be safe during the whole procedure.
Installation of the Dental Implant
Before the dental implants are implanted or inserted, first their sterility must be confirmed to prevent infectious pathogens. You also need to make sure the operating place or environment is hygienic before undergoing such a procedure. Implant screw is placed which in most cases is self-tapping. If not self-tapping, a tapping analogue is normally used.
To put it into position, it is tightened using torque controlled wrench, an equipment that prevents overload to the implant. An improperly installed implant can lead to separation of the implant and the bone. Worse is when you have severe bone necrosis because it means even the procedure cannot be redone.
After the implant has undergone screw fixation at the bone level, it needs to be inserted or supported by the gingiva tissue. The health tissue is used to cover the dental implants so that they can support the implant fully.
Alternatively, a cover screw can be used on top of the tissue so that the tissue is tightened to the implant. This means no shaking or tissue disorientation and the healing abutment remains intact until all wounds completely heal. Any mistake on adaptation could lead to tissues rotting because they will be separate from the implant.
Healing Time after Implant
Dental Implants heal when the bone grows over the implant and covers the gaps. The implant becomes part of your bone and becomes stable to the extent that you can chew materials without experiencing pain or bleeding.
It takes 3 to 6 months to regain complete stability of the implant but it depends on factors like the extent of the implant itself. For small implants, it heals quickly but for the ones involving large tissue surgery, it could take even more than six months for tissues to rebuild and absorb the implant.
Methods of Dental Implants Installation
Immediate post extraction implantation: This means the doctor puts the implant the same day immediately after tissue incision and drilling. It is normally for the small procedures that do not involve a lot of tissues and drilling.
Early Loading: This refers to when your implant is inserted a week to twelve weeks after extraction. The third type is delayed loading which implant is installed over 3 months after extraction. The doctor or dentist determines the appropriate time to install your dental implant depending on your health condition or status. Many people prefer a two stage surgery especially if it’s a large area that is involved in the surgery.
Besides the skills that dentist must have, it requires proper tools to make sure you receive quality service. From surgical skills, anesthetic skills and nursing services, all need to be top notch for you to receive quality service. Any compromise will lead to your dental implant becoming a problem to your oral health.
Look at the reviews of the hospital or dentist before you book your surgical procedure. If cases are complicated, a two-step surgery is always recommended to prevent complications from occurring. It takes 3 to 6 months for you to heal but with good care, this duration could be adversely reduced.