Overview of Implant Placement

The Dental Implant Surgical Procedure

The number of appointments and time required for implant placement will vary from patient to patient. The surgeon will bring great precision and attention to the details of your case.

Prior to or after surgery, you may receive antibiotics.  Anesthetic options will be discussed and you may choose between a local anesthetic, or for greater comfort, intravenous sedation or nitrous oxide (laughing gas). These options are discussed with you at your consultation appointment. A local anesthetic will be administered to numb the area where the dental implant will be placed.

An incision will be made in the gum tissue to reveal the bone, the implant site will be prepped and then the titanium implant will be inserted into the osteotomy site. 

A depiction of the upper jaw with all normal teeth
1. Normal
An example of the upper jaw missing a tooth with the jaw bone unhealed
2. Tooth Loss
A representation of a healed upper jaw bone after losing a tooth
3. Healed Bone
A digital representation of the initial dental implant placed in the jaw bone
4. Implant Placed
A representation of the healed jaw bone after placement of the dental implant
5. Healing
An example of a fully restored tooth using a dental implant
6. Implant Restored

Healing after Dental Implant Surgery

Now the healing begins. The length of time varies on a case by case basis, depending upon the quality and quantity of bone. In some cases, implants may be restored immediately after they are placed. The surgeon will advise you on follow-up care and timing. After the initial phase of healing, which is usually 8 weeks or more, the surgeon will evaluate the implant to determine it’s stability.  The patient will then start the restorative phase with the general dentist to have the abutment and crown fabricated.

In certain situations, It may be beneficial to perform a soft tissue graft to obtain stronger, more easily cleaned and natural appearing gum tissue in the area around the implant. This process involves moving a small amount of gum tissue from one part of your mouth to the area around the implant. 

Whether it’s one tooth or all of your teeth that are being replaced, your dentist will complete the restoration by fitting the replacement tooth (crown) to the dental implant.

Dental Implants Presentation

To provide you with a better understanding of dental implants, we have provided the following multimedia presentation. Many common questions pertaining to dental implants are discussed.

Dental Implants Presentation

When are dental implants placed?

Implants are often placed several months after extraction to allow adequate healing of the extraction socket. At times, an implant may be placed immediately at the same appointment as the tooth extraction. This may involve a little more risk, but it simplifies the process—you won’t have to wait for another appointment to place the implant. When infection or other problems with the bone are present, immediate implant placement may not the best treatment.

If your tooth has been missing for some time, the adjacent support bone may resorb and shrink. This occurs because the root of the natural tooth has to be present to stimulate the bone. As much as one third of your jaw’s thickness can be lost in the year following tooth extraction. If you are missing enough bone, you may require bone grafting prior to or in conjunction with implant placement. This ensures the implant will be adequately supported when it is placed in the jaw.