Are Dental Implants Painful?

No one likes pain, so it’s natural to be cautious about procedures that seem like they could be painful. But don’t let an unnecessary fear of dental pain keep you from improving the look and overall health of your smile.

Dental implants are a permanent way to replace missing or damaged teeth and can improve not only the look of your smile, but your health and quality of life as well. Sure, any procedure that involves dental surgery can be uncomfortable, but often the anxiety about pain keeps patients from considering this beneficial procedure.

Under the care of an expert dentist, the discomfort of the procedure is minimized. Charlotte, North Carolina, area residents can turn to Erika V. Burley, DMD, of Burley Cosmetic Dentistry, who offers the best in customized advanced dental restoration.  

Dental Implants Are a Permanent Alternative to Bridges and Dentures

Unlike bridges and dentures, dental implants are strong, durable, and provide a more natural look and feel. If you’ve suffered tooth loss for any reason, dental implants can provide you with a healthy, brilliant, lifelong solution to missing or damaged teeth. They don’t decay. They don’t slip. They don’t affect your speech or tooth alignment. And they don’t require complicated upkeep or adhesives.

Missing or damaged teeth can not only make you self-conscious about your smile, they can affect the health of your teeth and mouth. Missing teeth can cause damage to tissues and bone over time, and your healthy teeth can shift out of alignment causing issues with the appearance and function of your bite.

Dentures and bridges disguise problems, but dental implants work as replacements for your natural teeth and can prevent further orthodontic concerns. The implants replace the teeth and roots of missing teeth. You treat your implants just like your natural teeth.

The implants themselves consist of three elements:

An implanted metal anchor or post

The post is surgically inserted into your jaw to mimic the root of a natural tooth. Your jawbone bonds to the post in a process called “osseointegration” and provides a sturdy and stable foundation for your implant.

A crown

This is the part of the implant that serves as a replacement for the natural tooth.

A connective piece

Called an “abutment,” this element creates a secure bond between the post and crown.

Together, these three elements closely mimic your natural teeth in look, function, and feel.

What to Expect From the Dental Implant Procedure

Your dentist examines your teeth, bite, jaw structure, and medical history to determine whether you are a candidate for dental implants. Dental implants may involve several procedures based on the results of the exam and the extent of the restoration required.

The first procedure involves placing the post. You get an anesthetic to numb the area to diminish any discomfort during the procedure. The posts are surgically placed into your jawbone to create a tight bond. The dental surgeon then closes any openings in your gums with sutures and installs a temporary crown. Because osseointegration does take time, you can expect to wait three to six months as you heal and as the bond forms between post and bone.

After the first procedure, you may experience some swelling and discomfort, which you can treat with cold packs, salt water or antibacterial mouth rinses, and over-the-counter pain relievers. Any discomfort should only last a few days at most.

The follow-up procedure involves setting the abutment and taking impressions for your crown. At this point, your dentist also checks the progress of your implants and makes any necessary adjustments.

In the last stage of the process, you get new permanent crowns. You may experience some discomfort as your gums heal and adjust to your new permanent smile, but any swelling should pass quickly.

Saying Hello to a New Smile

With any dental surgery, there’s some discomfort, but most people tend to overestimate potential pain, particularly when there are words like “jawbone,” “anchor,” and “suture” are involved. The truth is, the temporary discomfort (not pain) of the dental implant procedure is balanced by the benefits of a healthy, stable, beautiful smile.

So, squelch those fears. Call or book an appointment online with Burley Cosmetic Dentistry at Charlotte’s Providence Plaza. Dr. Burley can help you decide if implants are the right option for your needs.

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