My teeth have deteriorated so much over the past five years that my dentist referred me to a periodontist. Only two of my teeth are worth saving. But my gum disease is so advanced that I decided to go with dentures. I am 62 years old, so the perio told me about dental implants. She was not pushy at all. She just explained how implants might help me. Although I am still deciding, I think I will go with four dental implants for an overdenture.
I have not talked to my dentist or the periodontist about my anxiety level. The older I get, the more anxious I become. Although I didn’t fear dental implants in the past, the thought of extractions, possible bone grafting, and then implant surgery causes me to panic sometimes. I just want it to be over. I realize that your office is not a specialty office. But can you give me an idea of how much dental work I can get done in one sitting? Thank you. Bethany from Delaware
How much dental work a dentist or specialist will do in one sitting depends on several factors, including the patient’s tolerance, the work to be completed, and whether you receive sedation.
How Long Does It Take to Get Implant Overdentures?
How long it takes to get implant overdentures depends on several factors, including tooth removal, gum and bone health, the number of implants you receive, your health and tolerance, and the specialist’s judgment.
- Tooth removal – If your periodontist must remove teeth before implant placement, it will lengthen treatment time. Sometimes after tooth removal, a periodontist must build up your bone before placing implants.
- Gum health – Before placing dental implants, a periodontist will ensure your gums are healthy. She will treat your gum disease first. Gum disease can lead to jawbone loss, and healthy bone is a requirement for dental implants.
- Bone health – In addition to healthy bone, you need enough bone volume to support dental implants. If you lack jawbone volume, a periodontist will recommend bone grafting to anchor your dental implants. Otherwise, the implants can loosen and fail. After bone grafting, your periodontist may wait three to four months before placing implants.
- How many implants you receive – An oral surgeon or periodontist places one dental implant at a time. The more implants you receive, the longer the surgery will take. Each implant can take one to two hours to place.
- Your final implant denture – You will wear a temporary denture until your implants and jawbone fuse. And that can take about four months. Afterward, your dentist will secure the final denture to the implants.
How Sedation Dentistry Affects Your Dental Work
When you receive implant overdentures or any dental work, sedation dentistry will help you relax throughout the procedure. Even if you do not have dental anxiety, sedation helps a dentist complete more work than they could without giving you sedation.
After an examination and 3-D x-rays, your periodontist will make a treatment plan. They will explain how much dental work you can expect for each appointment. But sedation dentistry will alleviate your anxiety during each dental visit.
Midtown Manhattan dentist Marianna Farber, DDS, sponsors this post.