Having a dental implant
Stage 1: Pre-operative assessment
Before implants can be put in, your dentist takes X-rays and moulds (impressions) of your mouth. These help the dental team to plan your treatment and make the implant to fit your mouth.
You need several visits to the hospital for this stage.
Stage 2: Bone grafting
If you do not have enough bone to support the implant, you might need a bone graft. Your dentist tells you if you need a bone graft and explains any risks.
If you have a bone graft, treatment might take 4 to 6 months longer.
Stage 3: Having implants put in
This is usually done under local anaesthetic, which is an injection that makes the area of your mouth being treated numb. This means that you do not feel any pain.
- The dentist puts in the implant by lifting the gum away from the jaw bone.
- The dentist carefully drills into the jaw bone and puts the implant into the bone.
- The gum is replaced and held together with stitches.
- The stitches are removed about a week later.
Some people need minor bone grafting when they have their implant put in. Your dentist tells you if you need this and what it involves.
After having an implant put in, you usually need to wait for at least 3 months before it can support replacement teeth.
Some implants stick out through the gum and others are buried under the gum.
Implants that are buried under the gum need another small surgical procedure before we can use them.
Stage 4: Restorative treatment
You need several appointments to make your replacement teeth (such as your crowns, bridges or dentures). At these appointments, we make moulds and check that the parts used for your replacement teeth fit.