August 16, 2012 11:12 pm

Are dental implants painful?

Dental implants aren’t as scary as you might think!

Surprisingly, placement of dental implants is rarely as painful as most people believe.   The process is generally quick, straightforward, and can be done without major pain or discomfort.  Most patients have no need of anything more than the local anesthetic and over the counter pain medications for handling discomfort.  The placement of the implant itself can be a very fast operation, and can be completed in as little as 15-20 minutes.

We have even had patients who reported they were taking tours the same afternoon as their implant surgery!

By far, dental implants are the best option for replacement of missing teeth, and the process can be easier than you believe.

Dental implants are comprised of three parts:

  • the dental implant itself, which is the replacement for the root of the tooth
  • an abutment, which screws into the implant
  • the crown, which is cast onto the abutment and provides the visible tooth replacement

Dental implants are completed in two stages, the first stage is placement of the implant itself.   A small incision is made in the gum, and a small drill is used to quickly tap into the jawbone.  The implant is then screwed into the bone and the incision in the gum is stitched closed.  The implant is then left in the jawbone to heal, while the bone grows around and solidifies the implant in place.

Since there are no nerves in the area of the jawbone the implant is placed into, any discomfort from the procedure is mostly due to the small incision in the gums: this process is often less uncomfortable or painful than a simple tooth extraction.  For most patients, they can expect some minor swelling and perhaps some cheek bruising or soreness for a few days following the procedure.  Most patients are surprised at how easy the process can be.

When the implant has healed to the bone, the gum is reopened, the implant uncovered, and the abutment screwed into the implant.  Impressions are taken of the abutment and surrounding teeth, and the crown is then fabricated and cast onto the abutment.

Of course, some people require extensive bone replacement and/or sinus lifting prior to placement of implants, and this can change the dynamic of the treatment, but for the majority of patients, placement of implants is quite uncomplicated and not overly uncomfortable.

Naturally, every patient reacts differently to treatment, but you could be happily surprised how easy having a dental implant fitted can be!

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