Dental Implants


Dental Implants

Dental implants take the place of a lost tooth root. These permanent metal screws secure artificial or fake teeth — such as dental crowns, dental bridges or dentures — in place. A dental implant can replace one or more missing teeth.

What are dental implants?

Dental implants are small threaded posts that replace missing teeth roots. Most dental implants are titanium, but some are ceramic. Both of these materials are safe and biocompatible (friendly to the tissues inside of your mouth).

How do dental implants work?

A surgeon places a dental implant into your jaw during an oral surgery procedure. Once the implant heals, your dentist can place a crown on top. Depending on your oral health goals, your dentist can restore your implants with crowns, bridges or dentures.

Procedure Details

How should I prepare for a dental implant?

Before the dental implant procedure, you should:

Give your dentist a current list of medications and supplements you take. It’s important to tell your dentist if you’re taking a blood thinner (anticoagulant). Your dentist will decide in coordination with your primary care provider whether you need to stop taking any medications before your implant procedure.

Make sure that you’ve seen your primary care provider recently for a checkup and blood work to ensure that there aren’t any conditions that would interfere with implant success.

Talk to your dentist about sedation options. Most surgeons offer sedative medications that help you relax during your dental implant surgery.

If you plan on having sedation, arrange for a trusted friend or family member to drive you home after your procedure.

What happens during dental implant surgery?

During dental implant surgery, your surgeon will:

Give you anesthesia. They’ll administer local anesthesia to numb your gums. If you opted for sedation, they’ll give you those medications as well.

Create an incision. Once you’re comfortable, your surgeon will make an incision (cut) in your gums where the dental implant will go. This exposes the bone underneath so your surgeon can place the implant.