Dental implants protect your smile. However, this process requires a lot of patience because most of the time, it cannot be completed all at one time. Still, the rewards of a beautiful smile will make it worth the time and effort.
There are several reasons a dental implant may be needed. First, is the extraction or loss of a single tooth. The implant will replace the missing tooth root, while the crown replaces the tooth itself. Since the jawbone fuses around the implant, it is secured in place so you don’t have to worry about it falling out.
At Wolf Schwartz Dentistry in Boca Raton, we want to emphasize the importance of having an implant placed as soon as possible following the extraction of one or more teeth.
Tooth Extraction & Dental Implant Timeline
The process of getting dental implants begins with extracting the affected tooth. Once this is done, the next steps depend on how many implants you need and the quality of your jawbone. if you have any questions or concerns about your tooth extraction and dental implant timeline, feel free to ask questions. Dr. Schwartz will be more than happy to help you understand.
Typically, most patients need at least several months from extraction to the final placement of the prosthetic teeth.
The first step in any dental procedure is consultation
At this time, Dr. Schwartz will examine your mouth and take x-rays or other imaging to determine your needs. He will also discuss his findings and your goals, as well as address any questions or concerns you have. From there, your treatment plan will be created.
Extraction of Damaged Tooth/Teeth
The next step is to have the damaged tooth/teeth removed. In most cases, you will need time to heal following extraction. It will be determined at this time if you need a bone graft to improve the quality of the jawbone so that the dental implant will be a success.
This step may or may not be needed. Some patients have adequate jawbone density, so we will have no issues placing the implants. However, some patients have jawbone deterioration- especially if they’ve waited to have implants placed. If this is the case, we will take bone from elsewhere in your body or use a synthetic bone material to build up the bone. If this step is required, you will need a few months to heal.
Typically, 2-3 months following extraction and bone grafting, you will be ready for the implant to be placed. The dental implant is a titanium screw that is inserted into the jawbone to support the prosthesis. The implant acts as a tooth root, stimulating the bone to prevent deterioration. You will need some time for the jawbone to heal around the implant, fusing it in place. Depending on the location of the implant, we may place a temporary prosthesis while you heal.
After the implant is placed, you will go through the healing phase. During this time, your body is not just healing from surgery, but your bone is fusing around the implant to hold it in place. The implant will become a permanent part of your body. You will need to discuss dietary restrictions with Dr. Schwartz so that you don’t damage the implant.
Placing Abutment and Crown
Once your jawbone has fused around the implant, securing it in place, Dr. Schwartz will make an impression of your mouth. This will be sent to the lab for the fabrication of your crown or dental prosthetic.
Once your dental implant procedure is completed, you will need to make sure that you are following proper aftercare/dental hygiene procedures. In addition, you’ll need to make sure that you keep up with regular dental visits every 6 months to ensure that the implant continues to be a success.
What Happens if I Don’t Get Dental Implants after Tooth Extraction?
Many of our patients at Schwartz Dentistry ask what will happen if they don’t get dental implants following tooth extractions- or how long they can safely put off the procedure. There are two common reasons behind these questions:
- Fear about the process
- Anxiety about the cost
However, if you ignore your appointment for dental implant placement, there may be some detrimental effects on your oral and overall health. Dental implants serve as replacement roots for missing teeth, which prevents deterioration by stimulating growth.
There are several things that may go wrong if you delay dental implant placement, including:
Lack of dental functionality
Missing one or more teeth can impact your quality of life because it restricts your diet due to your lack of ability to bite or chew. In addition, missing one or more teeth can interfere with your ability to speak clearly, smile, or laugh.
When you are missing just one tooth, the movement of your jaws while chewing is impacted. If you don’t have it replaced, it can cause the other teeth to shift, impacting your oral health.
When you have all of your teeth, your smile is appealing and you’re confident. If you’re missing one or more teeth, it impacts your self-esteem and confidence.
Your teeth keep your jawbone intact. When you’re missing teeth, your jawbone loses that stimulation, which means it begins to deteriorate. If you lose too much jawbone density, you’ll have to undergo a bone graft procedure before we can place the implants. This procedure can be expensive and painful. Plus, it increases the healing time required before we can place them.
Additionally, if you are missing teeth, the surrounding teeth will shift to try to fill in the gap, which can cause additional issues.
When you have one or more teeth removed, the posterior teeth may shift forward to fill in the space. If you do not have implants placed in a timely manner, there is no room for them to be placed. This means additional procedures may be required and we may have to extract additional teeth to make room for orthodontic treatments.
While you may not notice the gradual shifting of the surrounding teeth, it begins immediately after losing a tooth. The pressure of the opposing tooth may increase your risk of developing TMJ disorder, a condition that results in severe pain in your jawbone and often requires extensive procedures to repair the condition.
As you can see, failure to have dental implants placed in a timely manner can lead to a variety of problems. These problems often require extensive procedures to fix. If you have any questions or concerns about dental implants, the team at Wolf Schwartz Dentistry in Boca Raton, Florida can help. We have the experience and expertise to replace your missing tooth or teeth following extractions or loss.
The professionals at Wolf Schwartz Dentistry understand that you have questions when it comes to dental implants. We are here to answer those questions. Below, we want to share some of the most common questions we hear:
The most common cause of tooth loss in adults is periodontal disease.
If there are no complications with the extraction, we may be able to place the dental implants on the same day. However, if the extracted tooth was infected, we recommend waiting for 4 to 6 months before having the implant placed.
As long as there are no complications, you can get dental implants right after tooth extraction.
In some cases, dental implants can be placed the same day as the extraction- but we do recommend that you give your body time to heal in between steps. This will increase the chances that the implant will be successful.