How long is the recovery time for dental implants?
June 20, 2019
Congratulations! If you have decided to get dental implants, you will soon possess a fantastically restored, beautiful smile. You will almost certainly be aware that the procedure to get dental implants is an invasive one, and for this reason, it is important to be aware of the recovery process so that you know when you will be able to start enjoying your new smile.
The most important thing to realize about recovery from a dental implant procedure is that it doesn’t happen at the end of the process, but rather in the middle after the dental implants have been placed into your jaw bone. This is because a dental implant procedure takes place in multiple stages after your initial consultation, which will be used to determine if you are a suitable candidate for dental implants. These are as follows:
Stage 1: You will have an appointment to precisely plan the placement of your dental implants and the design of your crowns that will sit on them and form the visible part of your smile. This planning is done using a comprehensive range of information, from the x-rays and other imaging that may have been taken to assess your candidacy for the procedure to scanning and taking impressions of your existing teeth which will be used as a reference for the artificial tooth.
Stage 2: This is where you will attend an appointment to have your implant posts placed. This process involves drilling down into your jaw bone at pre-determined locations. The implant posts will sit in the holes made and extend out through the gum slightly so that crowns can be attached. You will be fitted with temporary crowns until the implant posts re secure. This invasive process is often performed using a combination of local anesthetic and heavy sedation, although a general anesthetic may be a possibility. It is after this stage that your implant recovery will take place.
Stage 3: Once your jaw bone has grown around the implant posts to secure them in place, you will return to your implant provider to have the temporary crowns removed and your final, custom-designed crowns put in their place. This is non-invasive and straightforward, and you will be able to start using your new, permanent teeth straight away.
How long does it take to recover from a dental implant procedure?
Recovery times from a dental implant procedure can vary depending on several factors. This includes the number of teeth being replaced, your own health and, most importantly, how you manage the recovery process. For example, if you are having a single dental implant placed you will almost certainly experience far fewer effects that someone who is having multiple implants placed. This normally will allow you to heal fairly quickly and with minimal discomfort. However, if you smoke before or after your surgery, healing may be expedited and you may be at greater risk of complications.
If you are having a number of implant posts placed, you may find that your mouth is sore and swollen and that eating and drinking and even speaking is difficult and uncomfortable for up to a couple of weeks. Dental implant providers generally recommend that patients take at least a week off of work so that they can start the healing process with plenty of rest, adequate pain relief and with the time and ability to care for their mouth properly. This is because you may find that you need to stick to a diet of soft food and liquids during at least the first few days, although some are recommended to adhere to a soft diet for up to 6 weeks.
Your dental implant provider will give you specific information relating to your recovery, including informing you when you can expect to be fully recovered. The actual osseointegration process, which is the name given to the growth of jaw bone around the implant posts to secure them in place, can take between four and six months depending on your individual rate of healing. You will be assessed during this time so that your provider can determine when osseointegration has occurred and your custom crown/s can be placed.
If you have any further questions about dental implant recovery, please don’t hesitate to get in contact with our experienced and knowledgeable dental care team.