Dental Implants Olympia

Dental Implant Presentation

To provide you with a better understanding of dental implants, we have provided the following multimedia presentation. Many common questions pertaining to dental implants are discussed.

Dental Implant Presentation

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Dental implants are changing the way people live. With dental implants, people are rediscovering the comfort and confidence to eat, speak, laugh, and enjoy life.

Dental implants are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel, and function like natural teeth. The person who has lost teeth regains the ability to eat virtually anything and can smile with confidence, knowing that their teeth appear natural and that their facial contours will be preserved. The implants themselves are tiny titanium posts that are placed into the jawbone where teeth are missing. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. In addition, implants can help preserve facial structure, preventing the bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are missing.

If, like many others, you feel implant dentistry is the choice for you, we ask that you undergo a dental/radiographic examination and health history review. During these consultation visits, your specific needs and considerations will be addressed by the Doctor or by a specialist (an oral and maxillofacial surgeon or periodontist) suggested by our practice. Your questions and concerns are important to us. Out team will work with you very closely to help make your procedure a success.


Dental implants are titanium screws that act as tooth root substitutes. They are surgically placed into the jawbone. Small posts are then attached to the implant which protrude through the gums. These posts provide stable anchors for artificial replacement teeth.

For most patients, the placement of dental implants involves two surgical procedures. First, implants are placed within your jawbone. For the first two to six months following surgery, the implants are beneath the surface of the gums gradually bonding with the jawbone. You should be able to wear temporary dentures and eat a soft diet during this time.

After the implant has bonded to the jawbone, the second phase begins. The oral surgeon or periodontist will uncover the implants and attach a small healing collar. Then, the doctor will be able to begin making your new teeth. . An impression must be taken. Following this, posts or attachments can be connected to the implants. The teeth replacements are then made over the posts or attachments. The entire procedure usually takes two to six months. Most patients do not experience any disruption to their daily life.

For some patients, there may be inadequate jaw bone available for the placement of an implant. In this case, a bone graft may be necessary to increase the quantity of jaw bone in order to support an implant. The healing time for a bone graft is typically four to six months. Once the bone has hardened, the implant can be placed an the treatment proceeds as previously described.

Implant Post-Op Instructions

You have just completed the first step of your implant treatment. If you look inside your mouth, you may be able to see the implant. The implant does require a clean environment in order to heal properly. In that regard, much of the success of this implant will depend on you. Proper care of your mouth will aid in the healing process and reduce the possibility of complications. The following instructions will assist you in this healing phase.

  1. Following the procedure, you may find it advisable to take it easy for a day or two. Usually the fewer implants placed, the sooner you will feel comfortable returning to normal activities. Jogging and vigorous activities should be avoided for a few days.
  2. You my experience some swelling after the procedure. Ice packs will keep swelling and/or bruising to a minimum. Apply ice to your face on a 15 minute on a 15 minute off cycle for the remainder of the day if possible. One way to make and effective ice pack is to put ice in a plastic bag and wrap in a towel, cloth or sock. If swelling persists after 48 hours, apply a warm moist towel.
  3. You may have some discomfort after the procedure. The amount of this discomfort depends on a number of factors including the number of implants placed and where they were placed. Over the counter anti-inflammatory medicines (Advil, Aleve or Ibuprofen) are often helpful in controlling this type of discomfort. Your doctor may also prescribe a stronger pain medication. You may supplement the anti-inflammatory medication with this prescription medication if needed. You do not have to take or finish the pain medication.
  4. Your doctor may prescribe and antibiotic for you. Unlike the pain medication, it is important that you finish this medication unless otherwise directed.
  5. There is usually a minimal amount of bleeding following the procedure. We suggest that you bite on the gauze packing in your mouth for at least 20-30 minutes. If you notice bleeding from the area after the first 30 minutes, place another gauze pad over the area. Some oozing may occur for a day or two after the surgery. If implants are placed in the upper jaw, you may experience a nosebleed within the first few days after surgery.
  6. Rinsing is very helpful in keeping your mouth clean. Warm salt-water rinses should be started the day after surgery. Rinse gently several times a day and continue to do so for ten to fourteen days.
  7. Do not attempt to floss, brush or use a water-pik in the area of surgery for the first two weeks. Keep your mouth clean with warm water rinses. Following the healing period, you will be instructed on further cleaning techniques. The rest of your mouth should continue to be cleaned as usual.
  8. Diet is very important in the postoperative period. We would like you to eat soft nutritious foods. Care should be taken to avoid hard or crunchy foods that might cause trauma to the implant area. Gently rinse with warm salt water after every meal.
  9. Smoking should be avoided for at least two weeks following surgery. This has been shown to negatively affect the healing process.
  10. Your doctor will decide when dentures or partial dentures may be worn after surgery, but they must be worn only with caution. Remember, no undue pressure should be applied over that implant surgical site. This can affect the success of your implant.
  11. Stitches will be removed in 7-10 days, as deemed necessary by the doctor.
  12. Should you notice any swelling, redness or discomfort in the area of the implant after the healing phase, PLEASE NOTIFY THE OFFICE. Your patience and self care will help make your dental implant successful. If you have any questions or unusual problems, please call us at any time at 360-943-4644.