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Dental Implants

A dental implant is used to support one or more false teeth. It is a titanium screw that can replace the root of a tooth when it fails. Just like a tooth root, it is placed into the jawbone.
• Implants are a safe, well-established treatment. It's probably true to say that implants, looks like natural teeth, will last for as long as you care for them.
• Placing an implant is often easier than taking a tooth out and is usually done using a simple local anaesthetic. You will not feel any pain at the time.


How do Dental Implants Work?

Because implants fuse to your jawbone, they provide stable support for artificial teeth. Dentures and bridges mounted to implants won't slip or shift in your mouth — an especially important benefit when eating and speaking. This secure fit helps the dentures and bridges — as well as individual crowns placed over implants — feel more natural than conventional bridges or dentures.
For some people, ordinary bridges and dentures are simply not comfortable or even possible, due to sore spots, poor ridges or gagging. In addition, ordinary bridges must be attached to teeth on either side of the space left by the missing tooth. An advantage of implants is that no adjacent teeth need to be prepared or ground down to hold your new replacement tooth/teeth in place.
To receive implants, you need to have healthy gums and adequate bone to support the implant. You must also commit to keeping these structures healthy. Meticulous oral hygiene and regular dental visits are critical to the long-term success of dental implants.

There are two types of implants to be safe. They are:

Endosteal implants — these are surgically implanted directly into the jawbone. Once the surrounding gum tissue has healed, a second surgery is needed to connect a post to the original implant. Finally, an artificial tooth (or teeth) is attached to the post-individually, or grouped on a bridge or denture.
Subperiosteal implants — these consist of a metal frame that is fitted onto the jawbone just below the gum tissue. As the gums heal, the frame becomes fixed to the jawbone. Posts, which are attached to the frame, protrude through the gums. As with endosteal implants, artificial teeth are then mounted to the posts.


AFTER PLACEMENT OF DENTAL IMPLANTS

Important- No driving for 24 hours after surgery and while taking narcotic medication.
Bleeding-• A certain amount of bleeding is to be expected following oral surgery. Slight bleeding, oozing, or redness in the saliva is not uncommon. Continuously bite on gauze for 40 minutes. Do not remove gauze to check for bleeding as it may dislodge preliminary clot and lead to more bleeding. Large clots may be wiped away. Repeat if necessary.
• If you have good firm pressure the bleeding should stop within 4 to 6 hours.
• If bleeding continues, bite on a moistened black tea bag for thirty minutes. The tannic acid in the tea bag helps to form a clot by contracting bleeding vessels. Do not rinse for the first 48 hrs after surgery.
• Try to keep tongue away from surgical site.
• To minimize further bleeding, do not become excited, sit upright, and avoid exercise.
If bleeding does not stop, call for further instructions.

Sinus Lift/Bone Grafting- • Do not disturb the wound.
• Avoid rinsing, spitting, or touching the wound on the day of surgery.
• Do not blow your nose for two weeks after the surgery.
• OK to use decongestant such as afrin or sudafed as needed.

Pain- • For mild discomfort take over-the-counter Tylenol or Ibuprofen every 3-4 hours (While taking Norco, do not take additional tylenol).
• For severe pain use the prescribed medication. Keep in mind that a full stomach minimizes nausea associated with some prescription medications. A smoothie or a milk shake is a good start. The prescribed narcotic pain medicine will make you groggy and will slow down your reflexes.

• Do not drive an automobile or work around machinery.
• Avoid alcoholic beverages.
• Pain or discomfort following surgery should subside more and more every day.
If pain continues, it may require attention and you should call the office.

Antibiotics- If you were given an antibiotic please take as directed and finish unless instructed to do so by your doctor. WOMEN PLEASE NOTE: Antibiotics may interfere with the effectiveness of your birth control pills. Please check with your physician.

Swelling-Swelling of the face following oral surgery is normal. Swelling around the mouth, cheeks, eyes and sides of the face is not uncommon. This is the body’s normal reaction to surgery and eventual repair. Stiffness (Trimus) of the jaw muscles may cause difficulty in opening your mouth for a few days following surgery. This is a normal post-operative event which will resolve in time. However, the swelling may be minimized by the immediate use of ice packs.
• Apply ice 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off for 24-48 hours following your surgery.
• Ice should be applied to the sides of the face where surgery was performed.
• After 48 hours, you should discontinue the ice and begin warm packs.
• Elevating your head while sleeping for the first 48 hrs will help minimize swelling. Swelling will usually reach its peak on the 3rd or 4th day.

Oral Hygiene- • 48hrs after surgery gently rinse mouth with a solution of one-half teaspoon of salt dissolved in a glass of 4 ounces of warm water at least 5-6 times a day, (morning, after each meal and before bed) for 2 weeks.
• You may also resume regular tooth brushing, but avoid disturbing the surgical site. You may brush all of your teeth with the exception of the implant or bone graft sites starting the day after your surgery.
• After 4 weeks, you can start brushing the implant, implant abutments or bone graft sites with a soft toothbrush, be gentle initially with the brushing the surgical areas.