Questions About Dental Implants? You’re Not Alone

Dental implants are really common. Many dentists consider them to be the best option for replacing missing teeth. Nevertheless, if you are considering a dental implant, it is normal to be a little bit intimidated. You are, after all, about to have a foreign object implanted into your jawbone. Learning more about implants and the implant process can give you a lot of reassurance. Review the answers to the following questions, and you should start to feel more comfortable with the idea of getting implants.

How do you care for implants?  

Sometimes patients worry that getting implants means committing to a lifetime of caring for a special dental appliance. But this is not really the case. You basically care for implants just like you would care for a normal tooth. You brush them, floss around them, and have them cleaned by the dentist at regular checkups. The tooth itself can't decay, but it is important to keep the implant clean in order to keep the surrounding gums healthy.

How long will it be before you can eat?

Most people can actually go back to eating the same day as their implant surgery. You'll just need to chew on the opposite side of your mouth and avoid really crunchy or chewy foods for a few weeks. Your implant will initially be covered in gum tissue, so there won't be a tooth to bite down on in that empty space. Once your dentist does put the crown in place, which occurs a few months after the initial implant procedure, you can chew on that tooth almost immediately as long as it's comfortable.

Will the implant be obvious?

Not at all! Your dentist will choose the color of the implant crown based on the color of your other teeth. It will blend right in and look just like a normal tooth. Only your dentist will be able to tell which tooth is the implant.

Implants sometimes do become more obvious over time. If the rest of your teeth become stained and darken in color, the implant may remain lighter than them. If this happens, you can have your teeth lightened to match the implant. Or, you can have the implant crown replaced with a slightly darker one.

With these questions answered, you should be better prepared to get dental implants. Most patients are surprised that the procedure is a lot easier and less stressful than they assumed.