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Getting Dental Implants This New Year? Here's What to Expect

 Getting Dental Implants This New Year? Here's What to Expect

If you’ve decided to get dental implants, congratulations! Replacing a missing tooth does more than preserve your appearance — it also protects your oral health. Choosing a dental implant provides the closest experience you can find to a natural tooth.

But getting a tooth that looks, feels, and functions like the real thing takes time and a few steps. That’s why you want to work with talented experts like Dr. Caesar Sweidan and Dr. Laura Smith at Gulf Coast Periodontics & Implants.

Dr. Sweidan and Dr. Smith offer the best specialty periodontal care available in Gulfport, Mississippi. Their advanced skill, training, and equipment ensure the best outcomes for all of your dental needs, including implant procedures.

Are you getting dental implants in the new year? Here’s what you can expect from the process.

Dental implant basics

The beauty of this dental restoration option is that it works like a natural tooth. That’s because Dr. Sweidan and Dr. Smith place a surgical post in your jaw that functions just like a tooth root. Once it fuses in place, it can support a crown (the visible part of the tooth.)

However, this process also makes a dental implant a bit more involved than solutions like bridges or dentures. 

First, a dental implant requires enough healthy jawbone to anchor the implant in place. You also need good oral health to support the healing process. Finally, you need patience because it takes time for the jawbone to fuse around the implant as you heal.

But rest easy; Dr. Sweidan and Dr. Smith make the process as smooth as possible to ensure optimal outcomes.

Preparing for dental implants

The implant process starts with a comprehensive dental exam, including a CT scan. 

During this assessment, Dr. Sweidan or Dr. Smith evaluates the jawbone and looks for other oral health issues that could impact the procedure. They also discuss your medical history and discuss the best strategies for your procedure.

For instance, if you don’t have enough bone in your jaw to support the implant, Dr. Sweidan or Dr. Smith could recommend bone grafting. This procedure adds quality and quantity tissue to the area.

Sometimes, Dr. Sweidan and Dr. Smith will perform minor bone grafting while placing your implant. But, for more advanced bone loss, you may need to wait several months for enough new tissue to regenerate in the area before moving forward with your implant. 

Dr. Sweidan or Dr. Smith can also outline strategies to address other issues, like removing a damaged tooth or treating periodontal disease.

Once your jaw can effectively support the implant, you move forward with placement.

Getting your dental implant

When Dr. Sweidan or Dr. Smith determines your mouth is ready, it’s time to schedule your implant procedure. 

During this appointment, Dr. Sweidan or Dr. Smith makes a tiny incision in your gum to access the bone. Then, they use a special tool to create a small hole in the site for the metal implant post.

After placing the implant, Dr. Sweidan or Dr. Smith closes the incision in the gum. 

This procedure usually takes an hour. Depending on the implant location, you could receive a temporary denture while you heal — a process that can take 3-6 months.

Your final implant appointment

It’s not easy waiting for your implant to fuse in place, but once the jawbone grows around it, it’s not going anywhere.

At that point, Dr. Sweidan or Dr. Smith places the abutment on top, if it wasn’t attached during your initial procedure. This small piece holds your final tooth-like crown, and they can often perform this step with local anesthesia.

If you need an abutment, you must wait approximately two weeks to get your artificial tooth.

When you’re ready for your crown, Dr. Sweidan or Dr. Smith takes impressions of your mouth and surrounding teeth. That allows them to create a realistic ceramic crown that blends seamlessly with your smile. 

An implant crown can be either removable, fixed, or a combination. Dr. Sweidan and Dr. Smith explain the pros and cons of each and make personalized recommendations about the best one for you.

Getting implants might take time, but they come with high success rates. Furthermore, you care for them like regular teeth by brushing, flossing, and scheduling regular professional cleanings.

Are you ready to improve your smile in the new year? Contact Gulf Coast Periodontics & Implants to schedule a consultation in Gulfport, Mississippi, today.

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