Dental Implants

Patients that are missing teeth or having extractions are candidates for dental implants. Implants are a permanent, non-removable replacement option for missing or extracted teeth. Placement of implants are a good long-term solution for replacing missing teeth and have a high success rate. Dr. El-Hakim, Dr. Kontaxis and Dr. Morais are all highly skilled surgeons in implant placement and they continually participate in continuing education courses to stay up to date on the most successful implant techniques. Dental implants have proven to be more successful than many medical/surgical procedures, with a success rate of over 98%.

What are dental implants?

It is very important to replace missing teeth to prevent bone atrophy, tooth migration, and other related problems. Implants are a permanent, non-removable replacement for missing or extracted teeth that are the new standard of care in dentistry. An implant is a medical-grade titanium screw that is gently inserted into the jawbone to replace the root of the missing or extracted tooth. Dental implants can also be used in patients who have lost all their teeth to help hold a removable or non-removable denture prosthesis.

What is the difference between an implant and a crown?

The implant replaces the part of the tooth which is under the gum (dental root). The visible part of the tooth is called the crown and its equivalent is crafted by a dentist or prosthodontist, an expert in this type of manufacturing, and be installed on the implant after the healing period.

What type of planning is needed?

During the initial consultation visit with the surgeon, the area of interest is carefully evaluated, and a treatment plan is suggested (along with alternatives when appropriate). In the case of an edentulous (toothless) area, a special 3D radiograph is often required to ensure that there is enough bone available for the safe placement of an implant. Our office can provide this service during the same consultation visit. Finally, the treatment plan is coordinated with the dentist who will be restoring the implant to ensure optimal results.

We will be happy to explain the dental implant procedure to you in detail, call us today for further information!

Instructions

Pre-Op Instructions

Pre-operative instructions with intravenous sedation

Intravenous sedation is a technique of administering medications through a vein to help relax you and reduce discomfort. This is done without putting you completely to sleep. It is most important that you follow the instructions below very closely.

  1. The meal before your appointment should consist of light food and fluids such as broth, tea, or Jello, and should be taken no less than 6 hours prior to your appointment. Do not eat meat, fried or fatty foods. You may drink clear fluids (water, fruit juices, carbonated beverages, clear tea, and black coffee) until 2 hours before your appointment.
  2. If you are given medication to take before your appointment, it should be taken with a small amount of water, one hour prior to the appointment.
  3. Do not take other medications on the day of surgery without checking with your surgeon. Let us know of any changes to your health status or your medications before your appointment.
  4. It is advisable to wear loose-fitting clothing to make you more comfortable. Short sleeve shirts or blouses are necessary, so we can see your arm for monitor placement and intravenous access.

After your appointment the medications used will still be in your system. The following precautions should be followed:

  • You MUST be accompanied home in a car or taxi by a responsible adult who will stay with you for the remainder of the day. No public transportation.
  • Change position slowly. Sudden standing or sitting up may cause dizziness.
  • No driving or operating machinery for the rest of the day after surgery.
  • No alcoholic beverages for 24 hours.
  • Rest at home with your head slightly elevated for the rest of the day.

If you follow these guidelines along with your surgeon’s post-operative instructions, you will find the procedure will go smoothly and comfortably.

Post-Op Instructions

Post-op risks

The main risks are infections and bleeding. If you ever experience abnormal discomfort, contact us or the Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery residents of the Montreal General Hospital. Your surgeon will take charge of the situation.

A bruise, sometimes important, in the mouth, on the face and sometimes through the neck is quite normal.

Post-operative instructions

Postoperative instructions will be provided following the intervention by the surgical assistant. You will normally leave with a prescription from your surgeon for painkillers and sometimes antibiotics.

The following instructions have been compiled to assist you in the post-operative period. If you follow these guidelines, your recovery will be more comfortable.

  • After the dental implant placement procedure, there is often swelling of the face and sometimes bruising of the skin. This is normal. An ice pack applied to the area (30 minutes on and 30 minutes off) for 48 hours will keep swelling to a minimum. Maximum swelling usually occurs within 24 – 48 hours after surgery. Swelling can persist for 7 to 10 days. If the swelling resolves but then returns, you should contact our office.
  • Eat a light diet for the first two days; e.g. yogurt, soup, jello, milk drinks, etc. and then progress to a more normal diet. Avoid hot foods and do not use straws for the first 48 hours after surgery, as this may cause bleeding.
  • Rest for the remainder of the day following your operation and keep your head slightly elevated.
  • Refrain from smoking for 2 months after dental implant placement.
  • Some bleeding is normal for the first 24 – 48 hours. If bleeding is heavy, use gauze squares folded in 4 and apply firm pressure to the bleeding area by biting on the gauze for 20 minutes. Do not spit for the first 72 hours following your surgery, as this tends to cause bleeding.
  • Gentle tooth brushing can be resumed the day after surgery. Do not brush the area of surgery until your next appointment with your surgeon.
  • You can start to brush your teeth the following day except where you had the implants surgery.
  • It is important to keep your mouth clean. Starting tomorrow, a saltwater rinse (1 teaspoon salt in 1 glass of warm water) should be used twice a day after eating (ex: after your breakfast and before going to bed).
  • You will be given a follow-up appointment to check the healing, if necessary.
  • Dissolving stitches are used for most operations. It is normal for these to begin to fall out after 3 – 4 days.

If you have any questions or problems, please call our office (514-486-1002) and we will be pleased to help you. Outside of business hours you can contact the oral surgery Resident on call at the Montreal General Hospital ((514) 934-8075 or (514) 934-1934 extension 53333). It is very important that you ask to speak to the oral surgery resident on call at the Montreal General Hospital.