Dental implants are one of the most reliable options when it comes to tooth replacement.However, because dental implants are, well, implanted into the gum tissue and the jawbone, many are concerned about its reliability and just how successful the procedure is.
The current dental implant success rate is 98 percent.
Those apart of the slim two-percent group do not have successful procedures or healing processes typically because of an infection, lack of oral care, or weak gums and/or jawbone. Those with certain diseases or conditions may also be at risk of their implant rejecting from their mouth. Many of these complications, however, can easily be corrected.
The surgery is sterile, and patients will receive anesthesia and/or sedative to keep calm and pain-free during the process. Pain, of course, will be felt after the procedure. Fortunately, various pain-relieving medications can be used in addition to other means of pain relief (ice packs, saltwater soaks, etc.).
After the procedure is when the patient will want to pay extra attention to their general oral health. With the cost of receiving a dental implant, one should not take recovery lightly. This is especially true if they plan on having a successful healing process.
In fact, many of those who have complications after dental implant placement fail to correctly care for their oral health. Even failing to care for their oral health long after the procedure, a dental implant (just like any other natural tooth in the mouth) cannot thrive in an unhealthy environment. For that reason, don’t slack on your oral hygiene routine!
Why are Missing Teeth an Issue
When you consider replacing a missing tooth, fixing your appearance is not the only thing you should take into account. Leaving a gap in your smile after having your tooth pulled out or after tooth loss can cause neighboring teeth to shift. Thus, they may end up filling in the gap but not in an attractive manner.
Shifting teeth have huge potential for damage since they can lead to numerous tiny gaps in your smile.
Unbeknownst to many, our teeth are actually responsible for sustaining the structure and strength of the jaw. This is because the jaw is strengthened by the consistent use of the teeth, such as when we speak, chew, or clasp the top or bottom arches together.
If there is ever a spot in the mouth that does not have this support, it can lead to severe jaw bone deterioration and impact the rest of our smile.
How To Reduce The Anxiety Of Getting Implants
Getting dental implants can cause anxiety for some people. Here are some helpful tips and ways to reduce your dental anxiety before your appointment:
- Remember that your dental implants will look amazing when they’re finished. This has to be your motivational factor for following through with the procedure.
- Know that there’s a 98 percent success rate of dental implants.
- Keep in mind that general or local anesthesia will be used, so you won’t feel pain.
- If you are nervous during the procedure, you can opt for dental sedation during the surgery. Ask your dentist about such an option.
- If the sound of dental tools is problematic for you, listen to your favorite songs through earbuds while the procedure takes place.
- Ask your surgeon if someone you love and trust can be in the room with you during the procedure. This will be comforting to you and help reduce your dental anxiety.
- Remember that once your dental implants are put in, they’re in. There are no more surgical procedures necessary. Much like a piercing or a tattoo, you only need to go through one procedure to get dental implants, then you’re set! However, you may in the far future require another implant as the other breaks down.
- Don’t think too much of it. Assuming the procedure will be scary for you is not a happy thought. Much like having a cavity drilled and filled, receiving dental implants is much less “scary” than expected for most patients. Replace negative thoughts with the excitement of getting a new tooth or teeth after the surgery.
- Don’t dwell on the healing time. Dental implants heal fairly quickly for most patients. Once your dental implant heals in your mouth, things will be just as if you never had the procedure. Your teeth will feel and act so real!
- Get plenty of rest the night before to reduce anxiety. Getting plenty of sleep will also prepare you for the healing process that is about to take place.
- If it will make you feel better, speak with someone who has had dental implants before. Ask them about the procedure and what you can expect to deal with. However, keep in mind that everyone deals with different pain levels, surgery experiences, mindsets, and even healing processes. No two procedures will be alike!
- Keep in mind that thousands across the world have received dental implants and have been just fine.
5 More Reasons why You Shouldn’t Fear Implants
#1 You will be given anesthesia, so no pain will be felt during the procedure
If the pain is your main concern with dental implant surgery, you’ll be glad to know that anesthesia, either local or general, will be given to you at the time of surgery. This is a huge reliever for a lot of dental patients. The surgery itself should only take an hour or two to complete.
After the procedure, pain medication may also be given. If you don’t receive a prescription for pain medication, you’ll at least be recommended over-the-counter medications.
#2 Ask your dentist if sedation is an option
For those who aren’t fond of hearing/seeing dental tools or dealing with blood, dental sedation can help your dental anxiety. Discuss dental sedation with a dentist. See if you qualify or if another consideration will be more appropriate for your case.
#3 Many patients say post-surgery pain isn’t as bad as they thought
While dental implants take around 4 to 6 months to fully heal, many dental patients say the pain isn’t as bad as they would have expected after surgery. However, you should still take an easy, get plenty of rest, take pain medications if necessary, soak your mouth with warm salt water, drink clear liquids, and resort to soft or liquid-based foods or meal replacements such as sugarless smoothies.
#4 The success rates are high
With a 98 percent success rate, you can be assured that your dental implant surgery will go smoothly. Even for those with controlled diabetes (which is claimed to be problematic for dental implant procedures) have around a 95 percent success rate with the operation in terms of a problem-free recovery, fairly quick healing, and successful implantation.
If you or your dentist feel that you are not a good dental implant candidate, there may be other options for you at hand. For one, additional procedures before the implant surgery may have to take place in order for the procedure to be successful. Dentures or bridges are other possibilities. However, typically multiple missing teeth are required for those methods of tooth restoration. Speak to a dentist regarding the best route to tooth replacement.
#5 Most of all, you’ll have a beautiful, new smile to show off!
Just know that once the procedure is over and healing was a success, you have nothing else to worry about. Dental implants are very secure and much like real teeth. If you ever have any doubts, speaking will a dentist will clear things up for you.
However, keep in mind that once your implant is put in place, your smile will be gorgeous forever. Every ounce of post-surgery pain will be worth it in the end once you have a beautiful set of pearly whites that will help you in speaking and eating.
5 Dental Implants Myths Busted
#1 Everyone can get dental implants
Fact: Not everyone requires dental implants. For one to have dental implants, it is essential to have strong bone tissue in the mouth to fully secure the implant. If there isn’t a strong foundation for an implant, it can eject after placement. An expert and a qualified dentist can figure out if one will qualify for an implant.
#2 Dental implants are painful
Fact: The good news is that with the great help of nitrous oxide or anesthesia, the patient will have the chance to undergo a more comfortable, less complicated procedure. This can considerably minimize their anxiety regarding dental implantation.
#3 Dental implants with titanium can contribute to headaches
Fact: There is actually no clinical study that supports this statement. In addition to this, the headache felt after the procedure might be due to patients dealing with TMJ or surgical complications.
#4 Dental implants are risky and ineffective
Fact: The dental implant procedure has been around for over 40 years. Moreover, studies show that dental implants have an almost 95 percent success rate. This is higher than other tooth replacement alternatives at present.
#5 Dental implants are quite expensive
Fact: When you pick dental implants to restore your teeth, the initial investments provides immense benefits over a period of time. Plus, the length of time implants last ensures you get your money’s worth in the long-run.
4 Ways to Reduce Discomfort with a New Implant
#1 Take any prescribed or recommended painkillers or relievers
First and foremost, it’s vital that a patient takes any painkillers or relievers recommended or prescribed by a dental professional or oral surgeon. Take these based on given dose and instructions. These may be especially necessary for the first few days following the surgery.
#2 Eat softer foods or liquid meal replacements
It’s already necessary that after a dental implant surgery, one resorts to consuming soft foods and liquids (and doesn’t drink through a straw yet) while the implant is healing. However, these softer options also reduce pain. Chewy, sticky, and hard foods are vital to avoid as these could cause a significant amount of pain and harm the healing process.
#3 Apply an ice pack to the aching areas
To decrease pain quickly, apply an ice pack or frozen bag of food to the painful area(s) certainly helps reduce swelling and numb the pain. However, don’t leave ice on any part of your body for more than 20 minutes at a time. Leave it for 20 minutes, remove it for 20 minutes, and then replace for 20 minutes if necessary. For best results, use ice alongside taking pain relievers.
#4 Soak your mouth with a mixture of warm water and baking soda
Soaking your mouth (do not swish yet) with warm water and baking soda helps reduce pain and swelling. It even enhances the healing process by reducing oral bacteria in the mouth. A daily soak of this mixture would be useful. This is also recommended for oral sores, infections, and general oral pain.