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How Long Does a Smile Makeover with Implants Take?
A smile makeover transforms the appearance of the smile. When someone is missing one or more of their teeth, the gap in their teeth could make their smile less appealing and usher in other dental problems. Dental implants are a natural-looking option for replacing a lost tooth. When planning your smile makeover procedure, you may want to know how long it will take with the inclusion of dental implants. Read on to find out how long you should expect the process to take.
The dental implant procedure as part of a smile makeover
Dental implant placement is a surgical procedure and therefore requires adequate preparation. The implant procedure entails placing a titanium implant inside the jawbone and attaching a realistic-looking dental crown. The below information outlines the other elements of the process.
The time required to integrate with the bone
During the first appointment for the procedure, the dentist will insert the implant into the jawbone. First, the jawbone has to heal around the implant to make it secure. The healing process ensures that the implant is strong enough to support the final dental restoration. On average, osseointegration requires between six to eight months for the implant to hold, but it may take longer, depending on the health condition of the patient.
When bone grafting is needed
Not many people know that oral diseases can cause deterioration of the jawbone structure. If the bone has depleted due to advanced gum disease or because the tooth has been lost for a long time, the patient may not have enough bone thickness to support the implant. In this case, the dentist will need to augment the jaw before placing the implants. Bone grafts usually take about three to four months to heal fully.
When additional treatments are necessary
Gum disease removes the possibility of oral surgery until the infection is treated. Patients who have periodontal disease need to undergo treatment before taking steps toward tooth replacement. The treatment procedure may last between a few weeks to a few months, depending on the severity of the infection.
Placing the dental implant
When the dentist determines a patient as fit to get dental implants, the process starts. Placing one implant takes up to an hour, which means the number of implants determines how long the procedure will take. The next appointment will happen in another four to six months. Then, the dentist will check to see if the implant is fully integrated with the bone to get the abutment and dental restoration to complete the process.
The abutment is placed on the implant, after which impressions of the teeth will be taken and sent to the dental laboratory that will produce the crown. The crown will be custom-made to blend in with remaining teeth. Finally, the dentist will attach the new crown to the abutment to mark the end of the process. The final dental restoration will function, feel and look like natural teeth.
Although getting dental implants is a long process, many patients find that the journey is worth it for the results of their smile makeover. Compared to other tooth restoration options, dental implants require no special maintenance.
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