Missing teeth can have serious repercussions beyond damaging your confidence. Over time, gaps in your mouth can lead to bone resorption, your remaining teeth shifting, and they can make eating and speaking normally a challenge. Luckily, there are plenty of tooth replacement options available. One of the best is dental implants, especially if you’re seeking a permanent solution that looks and feels like a natural tooth.

But how long does a dental implant procedure take? While getting dental implants is a multi-step and long process, the dental implant procedure itself is quick. 


How Long Does a Dental Implant Procedure Take?

Many people are intimidated by the prospect of committing to dental implants because of the potential 6-9 month duration of the process from start to finish. However, the dental implant procedure is quite short. Per implant post, you can expect to spend 1-2 hours in the dental chair during surgery. 

Though the procedure itself is short, the recovery period can be long. This is because the dental implant needs to fuse with your jawbone. That process is called osseointegration and can take anywhere from 4 months to 8 or 9 to occur. 


The Steps of a Dental Implant Procedure 

To appreciate why the time commitment for a dental implant procedure is so long, it’s important to understand each step in the process. 


Initial Consultation 

The first step when considering dental implants is to book a consultation with your dentist to discuss the dental implant procedure and determine if you’re a viable candidate. Your suitability for dental implants depends on your oral hygiene, overall health and jawbone density. 

At the initial consultation, your dentist will do a thorough oral examination and may take X-rays to determine the condition of your jawbone. If your dentist determines you are in good health, they may recommend moving forward with dental implants


Dental Implant Procedure 

steps how long does a dental implant procedure take croydonThe dental implant surgery is the part of the process many patients are most nervous about, but the appointment takes just 1-2 hours for each implant post, and the area will be numbed with a local anaesthetic to minimise any discomfort. 

During the dental implant procedure, your dentist will make an incision in your gums and drill into the jawbone to place the implant rod. The incision is then sutured, and it’s time to begin healing. You should avoid vigorous exercise for the first 48 hours after the procedure to prevent additional bleeding at the surgical site. 


Osseointegration (Recovery) 

Recovery from the surgical procedure takes only 1-2 weeks, after which time the incision in your gums should be healing, and you can resume normal physical activity. However, osseointegration, which is the structural connection of an artificial implant to living bone, takes longer, requiring you to wait roughly 4-6 months before receiving your abutment and dental crown. During this time, the titanium implant fuses to your jawbone, replicating the function of a natural tooth root. 

You’ll need to return to the dentist periodically during this timeframe for checkups so your dentist can monitor the healing process. Follow all instructions from your dentist closely, including oral care practices and foods to avoid after surgery. 


Abutment Placement 

Once the implant stabilises, you will undergo a minor procedure to have your abutment placed. The abutment acts as a connector between the dental implant and your dental crown. To place the abutment, the dentist reopens the gum to expose the implant and attaches the abutment. The gum tissue is closed around the abutment but not over it, leaving it exposed for the dental crown. 


Crown Placement 

Following the abutment placement, the dentist takes an impression of the implant site and sends it to a laboratory where your replacement tooth is fabricated. You’ll likely have to wait roughly two weeks for the dental crown to be crafted at the lab, at which time you’ll have another appointment where your dentist places the crown. Unlike bridges, dental implants don’t rely on the surrounding natural teeth for support, making them a kinder alternative. 


Replace Missing Teeth at Dental Spot 

If you’re wondering, “how long does a dental implant procedure take?” reach out to your dentist to learn about the process and determine whether it’s the right solution for you. At Dental Spot in Croydon, we understand the value of a perfect smile and our skilled team of dental staff is ready to work with you on meeting your goals. 

For more tooth replacement options or to schedule a consultation for dental implants, call us today on (02) 9158 6115 or fill out our online form. 


Note: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.

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