Now that we have discussed the initial steps of a dental implant procedure, it’s time to talk about what you will experience during the remaining steps.
Step 4: Drilling into the jaw bone
This is the part of the implant process that tends to make patients very nervous. And it’s true; there are some significant, yet rare, risks. However, in terms of pain, there is nothing to fear. You will be under so much local anesthesia that you will only feel the pressure of the drill and your dentist’s hands. If you do feel pain, you can always raise your hand to tell the dentist to stop, and he or she will give you more Novocaine.
In some cases, your dentist may have to make an incision in your gum to expose the bone, in which case suturing (stitches) will be necessary. Due to the anesthesia, this will not be painful, either, although it will likely feel sore afterwards.
Step 5: Inserting the implant post
Once the hole has been drilled, the dentist will insert the implant post deep into your jaw with a tiny screwdriver. Depending on the condition of your jaw, you might require a bone graft. Though the phrase “bone graft” sounds alarming and serious, it is really such a minor part of the implant process that most patients don’t even know it’s happening.
Step 6: Healing
Now, your jawbone will need to heal and fuse with the implant in a process that can take several weeks or months. There is no way of knowing in advance how long it will take to heal, as it differs for every patient. While you heal, take care not to chew on the side of your mouth that has the implant post.
Step 7: Placing the abutment
Once your dentist has determined that your implant is stable enough, he will place an abutment on top of it. This is a small meta cap that sits on top of the implant post and connects it to the crown, like so. Since your gums at this point will have healed over the implant post, your dentist will need to use a small layer to burn away the tissue. Again, although this sounds frightening, it should not cause any pain due to the anesthesia. The abutment will be tightened with a dental torque wrench so that it remains in place during chewing. This, too, is painless.
Step 8: Attach the permanent crown
Finally, your permanent crown will be attached to the abutment with either the cement or screw-in method. You are now ready to face the world with a brand-new radiant tooth!
Bottom line: Does Getting a Dental Implant Hurt?
Believe it or not, dentists and dental hygienists often have tooth issues, too. We can tell you from personal experience that the procedure is not painful. We won’t lie, however: many parts of the process are uncomfortable, tedious, and time-consuming. After the procedure, you will most likely feel some soreness, but this can be helped with pain medications.
Need a Dental Implant? Make an Appointment with James Island Dentists
The truth of the matter is that most dental procedures are painless. It’s the anticipation and fear of the unknown that throw our minds into a spiral. When you are properly informed, have a dentist you trust, and know what to expect, dental work really can be a pleasant experience. If you are looking for James Island dentists, call Lowcountry Dental Arts. We can’t wait to help you get your perfect smile!