Just looking at a model of a dental implant, you might not be able to tell what level of discomfort to expect during the treatment. Is it like an extraction? Oral surgery? Can you even feel anything during the process if you’re under sedation?
Understanding just how comfortable the dental implant experience may be all the reassurance you need. Most people are surprised to discover that having an implant placed really isn’t much different than any other routine dental procedure. A majority of our Fort Worth dental implant patients say that the placement of the implant is actually far easier than having a tooth removed. So if you’ve ever experienced a dental extraction, implant therapy is typically less of an issue.
Minimally-Invasive Tooth Replacement
Today’s dental implants are technically the least invasive option when it comes to permanent tooth replacement. Compared to more conventional treatments like dental bridges, implants don’t require permanent alteration to other teeth for their support. That means healthy, adjacent teeth can be left intact. This characteristic is especially important if those teeth have never had dental work done in the past.
You may be asking, “How are they minimally-invasive if they’re set into my bone?” That’s a great question. In short, it’s because the implant design is resting in the same bone that’s designed for the roots of anatomical teeth. So when the implant is set in place, it doesn’t impact the structures around it. Your mouth is literally designed to accept the implant and turn it into a permanent feature in your bite.
Yes, Most Treatments are Completed with Sedation
Although a dental implant surgery can take a few hours to complete, you get the opportunity to relax through the entire procedure. Nearly all of our implant placements are completed under sedation, allowing you to completely tune everything out and feel like you’re sleeping through the appointment.
Dental sedation allows you to relax through the entire appointment, regardless of how long it takes and how many dental implants you’re getting. On average, the overall process can take up to a few hours from start to finish.
Generally, we’ll plan to schedule your implant procedure in the morning, so it’s best to skip breakfast due to the sedation medication. Once the treatment is complete and the medications begin wearing off, we’ll have you recover in a private room. Chances are you won’t remember hardly anything, due to the amnesic effects of dental sedation medications.
Since sedatives do cause lingering drowsiness, you’ll obviously need to have a friend or loved one with you at the appointment. This individual will be the one responsible for getting you home, set up with any medications we’ve prescribed, and letting us know if there are any issues to tend to.
Will it Hurt to Install a Dental Implant?
During the actual surgical placement, the only part of your mouth that can actually feel anything is the gum tissue at the installation site. Thankfully the vascular nature of gingiva also makes it easy to numb and desensitize. So once the small opening is created in your tissues to access the bone, you won’t have to feel a single thing. The gums will heal around the dental implant, similar to the way they wrap around your anatomical teeth.
Local Anesthetic Keeps Things Pain Free
The great thing about straightforward dental implant placement is that even if you didn’t need sedation, we could complete the procedure using local anesthetic. This numbing medication thoroughly desensitizes the area immediately surrounding your implant site, preventing the nerve receptors from picking up on any discomfort. Even without sedation, the only thing you would probably feel is a bit of pressure.
We still anesthetize your implant site, even if you’re undergoing dental sedation. That way regardless of how drowsy you are, you won’t have to feel a thing. It’s a win-win when it comes to your comfort and peace of mind!
Even the Recovery is Easy
Here’s the good news: the oral bone that your implant is set inside doesn’t have the same type of pain receptors that are in your gum tissues, cheeks, or lips. So essentially they can’t tell that anything has happened. That being said, your gum tissues may feel a little irritated where the small incision was made above the implant. Fortunately, gum tissues tend to heal quite quickly (thanks to being highly vascular.)
All of that being said, if you have any type of post-surgery irritation or discomfort, we recommend taking an anti-inflammatory, over-the-counter medication like ibuprofen (Motrin.) Take it as directed, as needed. Most people won’t need it for more than a day or so!
“How Soon Can I Get Back to My Normal Routine?”
Due to the minimally-invasive nature of implant surgery, the majority of our patients go back to their usual routine the day following their procedure. If you’re worried about heading back to work right away, you probably don’t need to take off for more than a day at most. Our DFW implant dentists will discuss the complexity of your case during your consultation so that you know exactly what to prepare for before the surgery is even scheduled.
Although you can go about normal activities, you may still want to avoid strenuous physical activity or heavy exercise for a period of time. Ultimately we just want to make sure that your blood pressure doesn’t get too high during a hard workout.
Still Have Questions?
Our DFW dental implant specialists are happy to discuss your concerns and answer any questions you may have. If you’re considering our Fort Worth dental implants, feel free to reserve a consultation with us. Our treatment coordinators will guide you through the process from start to finish so that you know exactly what to expect. There are no hidden surprises! And when you see just how comfortable implant treatment can really be, it’s an easier decision to make.
Contact Archpoint Implant Dentistry today to get started!