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Tips for Preparing for Your Dental Implants

Dentist with tooth implant false teeth. Dentistry and healthcare concept at dental clinic.

Dental implants provide patients with a gorgeous smile, improved long-term oral health, and a higher quality of life. The dental implants Atlanta patients benefit from every day are placed through implant surgery, a process that involves significant preparation. 

To better prepare for the process of restoring your smile through dental implants, you can:

Reach Out to Your Dentist

The very first step in the process of getting your dental implants will be reaching out to your dentist. They’ll be able to provide you with a thorough examination to determine what your potential treatment options are. Dental implants are a common treatment option for missing teeth, but they aren’t necessarily the right choice for your situation.

Your dentist will evaluate your medical history, current oral health, and other factors that can affect your treatment. They’ll take a variety of X-rays and other imaging tests to evaluate your jaw and any remaining teeth.

If dental implants are the appropriate choice for your needs, then your dentist will develop a treatment plan that includes preparation, implant surgery, and recovery.

Undergo Preparatory Procedures

Dental implants rely on your jawbone to provide a strong foundation for replacement teeth. The implants themselves are screw-like posts that are embedded into the jawbone. In order for dental implants to work, the size and health of your jawbone must be able to accommodate the implants.

For some patients, the thickness or width of the jawbone isn’t enough to support the implants. The dental implants Atlanta patients receive may require additional procedures before the implant surgery to augment the bone and provide a strong foundation.

Before your implant surgery, you may require a bone graft to increase the thickness of the jawbone. This procedure takes bone from another location and transplants it. It will take several months for the bone graft to heal and integrate before the implants can be placed, which can drastically change the timeline for any given patient’s treatment.

Follow Dental Implant Pre-Op Instructions

As the date of your dental implant surgery approaches, there are some specific instructions you’ll have to follow. Your dentist will go over your individual requirements in detail, but there are general instructions you are likely to have in any case.

For example, patients will have to abstain from smoking and alcohol leading up to the surgery and during recovery. They can both cause a range of issues, including increasing the risk of gum disease and infection. 

While the best advice from a dental perspective is to quit smoking in any case, patients should avoid tobacco use for at least two weeks ahead of their surgery.

You should also make sure to maintain good oral hygiene leading up to the procedure. Brushing twice each day and flossing at least once daily helps regulate the number of bacteria in your mouth. With an upcoming surgery, keeping bacteria under control can help avoid infections and other complications.

Understand Dental Implant Surgery and Medication

With any surgery, not just dental implants, it is incredibly important to report all medication use to your surgeon. Anesthesia can have complex interactions with a wide range of medications, and maintaining your health and safety relies on your providing accurate information.

Even seemingly minor medications like over-the-counter pain relievers and vitamin supplements should be disclosed. You’ll need to discuss any prescription medications with your dentist during treatment planning to account for any possible complications.

Ahead of your surgery, it’s likely that you’ll be prescribed an antibiotic. This helps prevent infection during recovery, and the course of the antibiotic is often started before the surgery itself.

Get Ready for The Day of the Surgery

The specific type of anesthesia used for dental implants Atlanta patients are having inserted will vary depending on individual factors. 

However, the surgery will almost surely require a type of anesthesia or sedation that will leave you unable to drive immediately following the surgery. Make sure to arrange for transportation after the surgery.

You should also prepare for the first few days of recovery before you undergo surgery. You’ll want to rest as much as possible, so make sure that you have everything you need, such as soft foods, a special soft-bristled toothbrush, and ice packs.

Dental Implants Atlanta Patients Can Rely On

Do you think dental implants could be the solution you need for your missing teeth? Dr. Brett Langston can provide you with a thorough evaluation and consultation at Dental Implant and Aesthetic Specialists of Atlanta to let you know what your treatment options are. Contact us today to get started.