A dental implant is a screw-shaped fixture inserted into the jawbone as a replacement root. The best thing about dental implants is that they have lifelike aesthetics, lifetime durability, and completely restore one’s ability to eat and speak.
While dental implants are the most sought-after tooth replacement option worldwide, many people are unaware of the stages involved in implant placement and healing. Knowing about different implant stages is highly beneficial when considering dental implants, as one can manage their expectations and ensure optimal healing.
This blog will discuss all the stages involved in implant healing. But before that, let us understand what dental implants are and how they work.
Dental Implants – an Overview
An implant is a metallic screw-shaped fixture inserted into the jawbone to replace a missing tooth root. Once the implant is inserted, it gradually promotes bone formation around it through a process called osseointegration. Once the implant becomes firmly embedded within the bone, we will place a suitable prosthesis to replace the missing teeth. The best thing about dental implants is that no matter how many teeth you have lost, you can replace them with tooth implants.
Dental Implants – Healing Stages
Clinical Examination and Treatment Planning
At Dentakay, we perform tooth replacement with dental implants in different stages. Although it is possible in a single stage, this practice is not done routinely. The first step in implant placement is a detailed clinical examination and treatment planning.
In the next sitting, we will insert the implants at pre-determined locations using a digitally designed surgical template. Once the implants are in position, we will place a healing collar over them. This is the first stage of implant healing. The healing collar ensures optimal healing by promoting unnecessary movements of the implants at the surgical site. This is referred to as implant stability. Implant stability is achieved in two stages:
- Primary Stability – this refers to the mechanical engagement of the jawbone with the implant body.
- Secondary Stability – in this phase, there is a biological interaction between the bone and the implant. During secondary stability, new bone formation occurs around the implant, anchoring it firmly within the jawbone.
Both primary and secondary implant stabilities are essential for the long-term survival of dental implants. You can learn more about dental implants before-and-after procedure, here.
After implant insertion, we will wait for about 4-6 months so that healthy bone formation occurs around the implant. Afterward, we will visualize the implant site using 3D X-ray and Cone Bean CT (CBCT) imaging to ensure the implant is firmly anchored in the bone. Once this happens, we will place a suitable prosthesis over it to replace the missing teeth. This is known as implant loading.
At this stage, you can use your implants freely for eating all your favorite foods as they are sufficiently stable to bear heavy chewing forces.
That’s it. Your implant has healed, and now you’re the owner of a charming smile! Dental implants look, function, and feel just like your natural teeth. If you are considering replacing your missing teeth, dental implants are the most durable, functionally superior, and aesthetically pleasing option currently available. However, to ensure you retain this smile for a lifetime, you should look after your remaining natural and implant-supported teeth through regular brushing and flossing. More importantly, you should visit your dentist for regular checkups so that any problems with your implants can be fixed timely.
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