Some dental procedures take no time at all. For example, you may have a chipped tooth that requires a porcelain veneer or a broken tooth that needs a same-day dental crown. With these procedures, you can be in and out of your Columbia, South Carolina, dentist’s office in no time. Other, more serious dental problems require more time. 

Missing teeth is one dental problem requiring a several-month commitment, even as long as one year. If you are missing several or a full mouth of teeth, you may be a good candidate for dental implants in Columbia, South Carolina. Dental implants are one of the best tooth replacement options because they look and function like your natural teeth, last a long time, and restore the beauty of your smile and face. 

If you’re looking for an answer to the question, “How long does it take to get dental implants?” the best answer is that the time varies for each person, but most of the time, you should expect to devote a full year to having a new set of beautiful, natural-looking teeth.

The Dental Implant Process

implant in tweezers on a gray background

The areas of your mouth that are missing teeth must be prepped to receive dental implants. If your jaw needs to be prepared, the implant dentist will perform bone grafts or reshape. Bone grafts are not necessary with all dental implant procedures. 

In fact, with All-On-4® Dental Implants, no bone graft is ever needed. You may be a great candidate for this type of dental implant, which only requires four posts placed into your jaw. Traditional dental implants require 6-8 posts, typically.

Traditional dental implants are titanium posts that resemble screws. The number of dental implants necessary to restore your smile depends on many factors, including how many teeth need to be replaced. Jawbone density must also be considered, and your general health must be considered. 

Some medical issues preclude you from getting dental implants. Your Columbia, South Carolina, implant dentist will gather all necessary information regarding your general medical history prior to beginning any dental implant work.

Your implant dentist will surgically implant the titanium posts into your jaw bone  in a process called “osseointegration.” Those implants will fuse with your jaw providing you with a permanent tooth replacement. Osseointegration takes a few months, and because everyone heals at a different pace, it’s hard to predict exactly how long this part of the process will take. During the entire dental implant process, it’s crucial that you follow the directions of your implant dentist before, during, and after the posts are implanted.

Once the implants are placed, an abutment (a connector) is added to prepare for the final step of the implant process, which is the addition of the artificial tooth (a dental crown or dental bridge). The last stage of the dental implant process is a “dental implant restoration.” Your Columbia, SC, dentist may use implant-supported dentures. There are numerous choices to finish the dental implant process; your dentist will discuss your best options for these restorations.

Benefits of Dental Implants

There are a number of reasons why dental implants have become so popular in recent years. Dental implants in Columbia, South Carolina:

  • Replace one, several, or a full mouth of missing teeth
  • Provide a natural-looking smile
  • Last many years
  • Allow you to enjoy all the foods you love
  • Protect your remaining teeth
  • Maintain healthy gums
  • Keep your jawbone healthy
  • Provide a dazzling smile
  • Require no special care

Learn More About the Dental Implant Process in Columbia, South Carolina

Columbia, South Carolina, implant dentist Dr. Adam Hahn at Smile Columbia Dentistry stands ready to evaluate your oral and general health and discuss the best tooth replacement options. If you are not a great candidate for dental implants, other tooth replacement options may work for you. Please call the office (803) 781-9090 or fill out our online contact form. One of our dental team members will reach out to answer questions or schedule a new patient appointment. After a thorough evaluation, the cost of dental implants will be discussed, and a treatment plan will be created.