Dental implants are a wonderful solution to replace missing or extracted teeth. In many cases, they are better than other alternatives like bridges, because no additional teeth need to be altered to place the new tooth.
The entire implant process can be lengthy, but is well worth it. It is usually performed over the course of 6-8 months from tooth removal. If a failing tooth needs to be extracted first, we recommend that a bone graft be placed at the time of tooth removal to preserve bone volume in the area. If the tooth has already been removed and you have adequate bone for an implant, the process may only take 3-4 months.
After placement, an implant must be allowed 3-6 months to heal. During this time the jaw bone will reform and grow around the implant in a process called osseointegration. In some cases, a temporary crown may be installed while we wait for healing, so that you can eat and speak normally and maintain a proper aesthetic appearance for your smile.
After the implant has healed, it is time restore your new tooth. We will need to schedule an appointment to make an impression of your implant. Once the restoration is completed by our laboratory, you can return to the office to have the restoration inserted. Soon the implant should feel similar to your own teeth.