Dental implants are widely recognized as the longest-lasting teeth replacement option available. But how long does it take to complete treatment? At our Albuquerque, NM, practice, Dr. James Slaman discusses the treatment process and explains what patients can expect in terms of their dental implants timeline.
Because every individual is unique, the length of treatment can vary depending on your specific case. However, in most instances, the process is likely to last at least nine months from preparation to final restoration placement.
Preparing for Dental Implant Placement Surgery
In preparation for any dental implant surgery, Dr. Slaman will first examine the patient to determine if implants are an effective solution during an initial consultation. Sometimes, an individual may not be an ideal candidate, such as someone with low jawbone density. In this case, Dr. Slaman may recommend bone grafting to increase your eligibility, which can add three to six months to the overall treatment timeline.
Every patient is unique, which is why no dental implants timeline is a one-size-fits-all arrangement.
During this first meeting with the doctor, patients will also undergo dental x-rays as part of a comprehensive evaluation. They should also speak with our team about payment options such as CareCreditⓇ and in-office payment plans to cover the cost of dental implants. Not all dental insurance carriers cover restorative dentistry treatments, so patients must understand their financial obligations before surgery.
Although the dental implant surgery itself should only take a few hours, the surgery date may be several weeks or even months after the prior consultation with Dr. Slaman. During that time, patients should follow all lifestyle and oral hygiene guidelines recommended to them, including limiting their consumption of alcohol and use of tobacco products. The goal is for patients to be as healthy as possible on the day of surgery.
Dental Implant Placement
When patients arrive for surgery, Dr. Slaman will first provide them with local anesthesia to minimize discomfort. We can also provide oral conscious sedation to help individuals relax during treatment. At all times during the surgical process, the patient’s comfort and safety is given the highest consideration.
Placement of a dental implant involves making a small incision and creating a pilot hole in the jawbone. The dental implant will be placed into the hole once it is fully prepared, after which Dr. Slaman will suture the gums closed again. Patients will need a driver to take them home, where they can recuperate while following recommended guidelines to promote healing.
Recovery From Dental Implant Surgery
Immediately after surgery, patients can expect to feel some discomfort and tenderness where Dr. Slaman placed their implants. Within 10 days to two weeks, those sensations typically go away for patients who follow at-home care instructions.
Over the next four to six months, Dr. Slaman will monitor the patient’s recovery journey. During this time period, he will prepare the permanent restorations that will be attached to the dental implant after it has fully fused with the surrounding bone. This restoration could be a dental crown, bridge, or denture.
After the dental implant has stabilized, the patient will return to Dr. Slaman for a minor surgery to attach abutments. Once they have fully recovered from this procedure, patients can schedule their third and final appointment to attach the permanent restoration. At this time, the dental implant will be completely functional and ready to use. It will look very natural and offer function and beautiful aesthetics.
Determine Your Dental Implants Timeline in Albuquerque, NM
Every patient is unique, which is why no dental implants timeline is a one-size-fits-all arrangement. Call (505) 881-7586 to discuss dental implants with Dr. Slaman in Albuquerque, NM.