What can I use for teeth while the implants heal?

Temporary removable teeth or a temporary bridge can be made for you if you need replacement teeth while your implants are healing. For patients who are missing all of their teeth, Dr. Michael Shnayder can usually alter their current complete denture or construct a temporary denture. Temporary transitional implants can be placed with the permanent implants for those who would like non-removable teeth during healing. If this be the case, temporary teeth can be made and attached the same day. In some situations, a temporary or permanent dental restoration can be placed when the implant is placed or shortly after.

What are the potential problems?

Most patients do not experience significant pain after having implants placed. To make your recovery as comfortable as possible, our oral surgeon will prescribe pain medication and antibiotics for you. In rare cases, a patient may develop post-operative infections that require additional antibiotics. Despite the fact that great care is taken to place the implant with precision, the adjacent teeth are occasionally injured when the implant is placed. There is also a chance that the nerve in the lower jaw will be affected. This nerve provides feeling to your lower lip and chin. If there is a lot of bone missing, it can be difficult for our oral surgeon to place an implant without getting too near to the nerve. If the nerve is irritated during the procedure, tingling, numbness, or a complete lack of feeling in your lip, chin, or tongue may occur. These issues will usually resolve in time, but in rare cases, they can be permanent and/or painful. Notify us of post-operative numbness as soon as possible, so that we can manage your care in the appropriate way.

How long will the implants last?

With patients who are missing all of their teeth, long-term studies (more than 30 years) show an 80 to 90 percent success rate. With patients who are missing one or several teeth, recent studies show a success rate of greater than 95 percent. However, in the case of a dental implant not healing properly or loosening over time, it may need to be removed. Another implant can usually be placed after the site heals, or sometimes at the time of removal.

When are the replacement teeth attached to the implant?

Dental restorations are usually placed on the implants after the initial part of healing, when your jawbone has become firmly fused to the implant. In some cases, it is possible to place the replacement teeth immediately, or shortly after, implant treatment.

Impressions of your mouth with implants will be made, along with bite records that show the relationship between your upper and lower jaws. Using this information, abutments, or support posts, will be made to attach your dental restoration(s) to your dental implants.

If only a few teeth are being replaced, as few as three visits may be needed. The lab work needed to make your replacement will be completed between your appointments. To allow your dental restorations to be completed as soon as possible, keep all of your scheduled appointments.

If a removable denture is being attached to your implants, as many as five appointments at Village Pointe Oral Surgery may be necessary. A series of impressions, bite records, and adjustments will be performed to make your denture, along with the support bars, snaps, magnets, or clips that will attach the denture to your implants. We will make sure that you have comfortable, temporary replacement teeth during this time.

Generally, once implants are placed, tooth replacement is completed in 1 to 12 months. It is hard to give a specific time frame for the completion of treatment until after your implants are ready for dental restoration placement.

How do I clean my new teeth?

Brush and floss your dental implant-supported restorations regularly. Also use any other aids recommended by our oral surgeon. It is important to visit your dentist several times a year for hygiene and maintenance appointments. Your implants and their associated components are subject to wear and tear and will eventually need repair, including clip replacement, realigns, and screw tightening.

We welcome you to contact our office today to schedule an appointment and to learn more about dental implant treatment in Omaha, Nebraska.