Are you scheduled for or considering dental implant surgery? If so, you may be wondering how to prepare for your upcoming appointment. There are a number of steps you can take to prepare for dental implant surgery. It is important that you understand the process and what to expect when having this procedure. In this blog post, we’ll cover some of the things that you should do in order to get ready for your dental implant appointment.
How Dental Implants are Placed
If you have already spoken with an implant dentist and scheduled your appointment, then this section may not be particularly helpful. However, if you are still deciding on whether to have dental implants placed, understanding how they are placed is important.
Dental implants are artificial tooth roots made to resemble a titanium screw. Since they are made to replace the tooth root of a missing tooth, this means that they will be placed in the jawbone. Thus, a minor oral surgery is needed to properly place dental implants. In some cases, additional procedures such as a bone graft or sinus lift may also need to be performed before or during the implant procedure. When this is the case, your implant dentist will discuss your specific treatment plan with you.
During dental implant surgery, small incisions are made in the gums to get access to the jawbone. These incisions allow for placement of a titanium implant post, which is screwed directly into place within your current bone structure. From here, an abutment will be screwed into the implant so that it protrudes out above the gums. In some cases, the abutment will be crowned with a temporary tooth replacement that looks just like a natural tooth. The gums will then be sutured up around the abutment.
There are also cases where an implant specialist may use advanced digital technology to place implants. This technology prevents the need for incisions and instead uses special tools to punch the implant in place, much like how one would have their ears pierced. This approach minimizes damage to the surrounding tissues and makes recovery easier and faster.
Preparing for Dental Implant Surgery: What You’ll Need To Do
When You Schedule Your Appointment
The day you schedule your dental implant surgery, there are a few things that you should do to help the process go smoothly. These things include:
- Filling any prescriptions given to you by your implant surgeon
- Finding someone over the age of 18 to drive you and stay with you for at least 24 hours after surgery
- Complete all pre-operative testing 2 weeks prior to your scheduled surgery date
- Stop Smoking: smoking can greatly impair your ability to heal, will affect the level of sedation during your treatment, and can negatively affect your comfort level during the appointment. YOU MUST BE NICOTINE AND SMOKE-FREE FOR AT LEAST 6 WEEKS PRIOR TO SURGERY AND 6 WEEKS AFTER! You must also be free of any nicotine patch or nicotine-based products for a minimum of 6 weeks prior to surgery.
- Stop taking the following medications and supplements 10 days before surgery: aspirin, ibuprofen, anti-inflammatory agents (Motrin, Advil, Midol, Excedrin), vitamin E, St. John’s Wort, garlic supplements, green tea (or extracts), fish oil, estrogen supplements, and certain types of birth control.
- Avoid caffeine 1 week prior to surgery and drink plenty of water for 2 weeks leading up to surgery
- Stop consuming alcohol 72 hours before surgery. If you’ve had alcohol within 72 hours of your procedure, the dentist can’t safely administer sedation.
The Day Before Your Appointment
- Take any medications as directed
- Confirm you have someone over the age of 18 to drive you and stay with you for at least 24 hours after surgery
- Avoid eating and drinking after midnight.
The Morning of Your Appointment
- Wear short sleeves and comfortable clothing
- Wear comfortable, well-fitting shoes and socks
- No jewelry, watches, or contact lenses
- Take sedative medication as instructed. You may sip up to 2 oz. of water ONLY to take medications, unless otherwise instructed.
To Sum it Up:
While there are many steps involved with dental implant surgery preparation in advance, following these guidelines will help ensure a smooth process from start to finish. Furthermore, it is important to follow these guidelines in order to ensure that your implant dentist can safely perform your procedure. If you have any questions, be sure to consult with your dentist before your appointment.
Irfan Atcha, DDS, DICOI, DADIA at New Teeth Chicago Dental in Chicago, Illinois is a board-certified general dentist and a nationally recognized expert in dental implants, cosmetic dentistry, and sedation dentistry. Dr. Atcha is now serving patients in Naples, Bonita Springs and SW FL area with All-on-4 implants, teeth-in-a-day, same day dental implants and the complex zygomatic dental implants for the no-jaw bone solution approach. To schedule a consultation please email Dr. Atcha at email@example.com.