Dental Implants – How long does it take

Treatment time can vary greatly depending on your needs.

If you were to break your arm, the bone would take a few weeks to heal.  Bone in the mouth is similar.  It usually but not always needs the same amount of time.  The upper jaw usually takes a little longer due to softer bone.  The lower jaw is usually very dense which speeds up the time frame.

Techniques such as "immediate implants"  allow me to complete full mouth implants in one hour, sometime less. Each situation needs a separate evaluation. Some implants can be completed from start to finish in a single hour, while certain situations will require a few months of healing. Be assured that at no point in your treatment will you have no teeth.  Temporary teeth are used to make sure you can smile with confidence until the final teeth are completed. At your first visit I will be able to give you an approximate timetable.

Traditionally, the procedure has been performed in two steps. The dentist began by placing the implant, which was left for from three to six months to heal and integrate with the jawbone. During the healing period, the patient was given a temporary denture until the permanent crown could be put in place.

I  provide an alternative to the two-step method that allows you to have the implant placed in one single session. This new method has simplified the procedure for patients. The procedure chosen depends on several factors, such as your health, the number of teeth involved and which teeth are replaced. These factors will also determine the total number of visits.

Surgical Advances

My technique saves many months of healing that are typically associated with dental implants. Temporary teeth can be placed on the implants on the same day of the surgery. There are even many situations where the implants can be placed at the same time as a tooth extraction further minimizing the number of surgical procedures!  In fact, I am one of few dentists that can extract a molar tooth and replace it on the same day!  Advances in dental implant technology have made it possible in select cases, to extract teeth, and place implants with crowns at one visit. This process, called “immediate loading” greatly simplifies the surgical process. Most patients experience minimal disruption in their daily life. In some cases where significant bone deterioration has occurred, we may have to delay placing the final teeth for 3-6 months.

A patient of mine is featured below.  She broke her front tooth and it was not savable.  The next picture shows the SAME DAY extraction, implant and temporary crown.  Hence to say she was very happy.  With this procedure there is literally no pain when done correctly.  No incisions were made. The next picture is her final porcelain crown on the implant, four years after placement!  I think it looks great and she is thrilled.  The final x-ray shows how the implant is encased by bone.

  IMG_3535  IMG_3545

IMG_4866  

2 - Final restoration in function for a minimum of one year 1-6-09  

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46 Responses to Dental Implants – How long does it take

  1. LS says:

    This is amazing! I was told that I need to get a dental implant in my molar, and seeing this success story makes me feel less hopeless about my upcoming procedure.

  2. Dr. Amin says:

    Feel hopeful about your procedure! In the hands of an experienced implant dentist, this should be successful. I have been doing immediate implants for 10 years now.
    Thanks for your post. Let me know if I can be of any assistance.
    Dr. Amin

  3. John Krauth says:

    Wow. What a helpful post. I wish I lived closer to you. My dentist is not as thourough. :( I am having three lower molars replaced.

  4. Thanks for your kind words, John. Good luck!
    Dr. Amin

  5. Dr. Esen says:

    a great blog, you’ve inspired me to consider a blog for my practice.

  6. Susanne says:

    I currently have braces making space to put in an implant for my front upper lateral incisor.
    My current dentist has only quoted me for the completion of the braces treatment. Told me i have at least 8 months left to go… although I believe there to be a significant GAP in my front tooth already.
    This makes me self conscious and unwilling to smile or talk. Is there a way to make the gap less noticeable? Such as this temporary teeth you have mentioned in this post? While i complete my braces treatment?

  7. Hi Susanne,
    There is a neat way to have a temporary with your braces.
    Ask your dentist to “hang” a tooth on the ortho wire. This will fill in the space and still allow you to move the teeth.
    I do this all the time!
    Dr. Amin

  8. ssma4@msn.com says:

    I have to have an upper sinus lift and would like to know realistically how long the recovery; bone growth, etc will take before the implant is inserted? I get different time frames from different dentists. One said 6 months which is too long as with all my past dental work, I heal quickly. Thank you

  9. ssma4@msn.com,
    A sinus lift graft usually take between 4 to 9 months to heal. A lot depends on the size and extent of the graft.
    Dr. Amin

  10. Gary says:

    I had a front tooth implant placed 10 weeks ago and was told I can’t get my temp crown for another 10 weeks! My restorative dentist wants me to get a temp crown now to allow the gums to heal around it and to get me out my flipper (which I would love) Who’s right? and is 10 weeks to early to load a temp?

    • Hi Gary,

      10 weeks is not too early. If you have a class one bite and the implant had initial stabilty of more than 35NcM in great natural bone, you should be able to have a temp on a front implant. There are about a 100 more details to consider, but those are the basics.

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S., D.A.B.O.I.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry
      Burbank, California

  11. Tom says:

    Hi, 3 weeks ago had a tooth removed just in front of my wisdom ‘the top left’. The gum is not really healing at all. Can I get an implant now rather than waiting for this to heal then having it done afterwards?

    It is also giving me slightly bad breath and this is something that I have never ever suffered with and is making me slight uncomfortable speaking to people up close.

    Thanks Tom

    • Hi Tom,

      The upper back teeth area has VERY soft bone. In most instances, it is best to wait until complete bone healing before placing the implant.
      Bad breath is not uncommon after an extraction of the socket is not kept clean.

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry
      Burbank, CA

  12. Stephanie G. says:

    Hi Dr. Ramsey! Do you have any recommendations for this kind of procedure in the Saint Louis area? I am currently active duty and deployed, but when I get back I’d like to get an implant for a canine tooth I lost a while ago. I’ve been using a flipper with a wire across the front to keep my teeth in place. The flipper is better than nothing, but I hate my smile right now and am so self conscious about my smile. Looking into civilian because my plan for now is to get out after my enlistmet is up in January. Thanks!

    • Hi Stephanie,

      Thank you for serving our country and protecting my children. The world needs more people like you.

      Your best bet would be to find someone with similar credentials to mine. They are well qualified to handle your unique needs.
      http://www.aboi.org/diplomate.asp

      Thank you again and good luck!

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry
      Burbank, CA

  13. lucy says:

    hi dr i recently had a front tooth knocked out im 20 and my teeth are very important to me so you can imagine how i felt, because the whole tooth came out clean the dentist has put it back in and used a bonding agent across my front teeth to hold it in place, will my jaw re accept the tooth, how long will it take roughly, and when do i need to look at getting a root canal treatment done ? thanks in advance

    • RamseyAminDDS says:

      Hi Lucy,

      Sorry for the delayed reply. This comment did not come through properly.

      When a tooth is knocked out the prognosis is really variable. They do not always need root canals or dental implants.

      How is it doing now as of late november 2012?

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry
      Burbank, California

  14. tammy says:

    I am having alot of trouble i was going to get implants after getting a bone graft for my lower 4 front teeth, my dentist pulled the teeth than done bone grafting, i waited for about 2 months than i had a ct cone scan, his office called me in about a week to tell me they needed another 5000.00 for a bone block. at no time did he tell me that this could happen. i have already paid him 4600.00. now i dont know what to do. do you know anything about mini implants? thanks i’m just so sick about all this.

    • RamseyAminDDS says:

      Hi Tammy,

      Ugh. I understand your concern. Often after a recent extraction, the whole outer wall of bone disappears quickly.

      If this were the case, another, more major bone graft would be needed.

      In my practice I am usually able to predict this 99% of the time, but there is no guarantee as how the human body will heal.

      Respectfully,

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry
      Burbank, CA

  15. MICHAEL WUESCHISNKI says:

    Hello Doctor,

    I had my two lower teeth pulled and now finally I got two post in the front of my mouth. The doctor told me it would take 4 months for the posts to heal and see if they will stay in?(whatever that means) Is that, a all right time frame for healing and then getting the crowns(I think that is what they would be called) fitted and then to put back in? After that, How long will that take SO I got the post in and waiting for it fo heal and then get implants in after 4 months?

    • RamseyAminDDS says:

      Hi Michael,

      I don’t totally understand your question. Can you please rephrase it?

      4 months is fairly average time to allow bone healing.

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry
      Burbank, CA

  16. Mary Bartolo says:

    2weeks ago I had 4 implants on my lower gums placed,I am in a lot of pain .Is that normal.
    thank you

    • RamseyAminDDS says:

      Hi Mary,

      After 2 weeks it is likely that there is a problem. Generally speaking, by that time you should really be on the mend.

      Most of my patients take motrin or Tylenol after standard implant procedures and even large bone grafts. If they need strong meds, it is only for a 3 days typically.

      Some patients are more sensitive though. I suggest you see your dentist ASAP to evaluate the source of the pain. The bone should be checked for infection and vitality.

      Good luck!

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry

  17. alice says:

    I have a crown thatt has a cavity. Its located on my top left. If they change it to an implant how soon can it be done?

    • Ramsey Amin DDS says:

      Hi Alice,

      If the crown can be replaced that would be a better option than extracting the root and having an implant.

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry

  18. barbie says:

    i have severe decay in roots two lower molars and bad receding gums in the same area and they need to be extracted.
    The periodontist said he can extract them and put implants at the same time.

    The Oral Surgeon said not to do that but to extract and let them heal then do implants.
    What should i do?

    • Ramsey Amin DDS says:

      Hi Barbie,

      I would need to see you to make that determination. Sometimes delayed or sometimes same day dental implant placement is best. It is highly variable. Typically same day implants are located towards the front of the mouth.

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry

  19. mropa says:

    doctor as it is known that implants is very expensive for the country i am Tanzania to us is huge amount of money plus hotel is it posible to have implants in the day of operation and the cost for 5 missing teeth

    • Ramsey Amin DDS says:

      Hello Mropa,
      Dental implants are placed all over the world. It is nice to hear from you being on the other end of the world!!! I would explore some local options and find a very qualified, skilled, dental implant specialist.

      Dr. Amin

  20. K says:

    i am having several teeth extracted and implants placed. I will be having the extractions and implants done at the same time and them in a month I will be having temporary crowns loaded on the implants. Will a month of healing be enough to load temporary crowns?

    • Ramsey Amin DDS says:

      hello K,

      Immediate extraction and placement of dental implants with temporary crowns is something I do on a daily basis in my practice for the last 15 years. I would not wait one month to do this though. The implants should be loaded either on the same day or within 24 hours or wait until 2 months has gone by. At the 1 month mark, the bone is going through changes were the implant is just about to anterior its weakest remodeling phase inside of the bone. This generally occurs at 6 weeks. The implants should achieve high initial stability and tightness in the bone in order to have temporaries placed on the same day. A very skilled implant team should be responsible for this.

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry

  21. Friede Thiessen says:

    Hi! I had a single dental implant Oct. 2013. After 4 month of healing and follow up appointments w surgeon he advised that the bridge could be replaced and my dentist did the work. I have had strange sensations at the implant site ever since and often thought if it as phantom pain where the original toothed once was. Recently this sensation has become a nagging pain and I have to take Advil regularly. Is it possible that my body is rejecting the implant and what should I do now?! Thanks for your anticipated response.

    • Ramsey Amin DDS says:

      Hi Friede ,

      You need to see your dental implant dentist right away. X-ray should be taken, your bite should be checked and your gums measured for any pockets or early bone loss.
      It is imperative that you be checked out very soon!

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry

  22. Melissa says:

    Hi, I’m currently 16 and I’m almost going to get my braces removed but I need two implants on my upper teeth and my dentist wants me to wear my retainer with fake teeth while I wait for my mom to start the whole implant process but can’t I keep my braces while I wait? And I’m still a little confused to how the whole implant process works. Like the day I’m set to get them do I get everything done and my implants are put and it takes 3-6 months to recover or?

    • Ramsey Amin DDS says:

      Hello Mellisa,

      It sounds like you are missing a tooth from birth. This is called a congenitally missing tooth.

      At 16 years of age, and you need to make sure that you are done growing. If you are still growing, you could outgrow your dental implant. This can sometimes be verified by taking an x-ray of your hand/wrist junction.

      During the process of having a dental implant to replace her missing tooth, you should always be able to have a temporary tooth on your braces. The whole process generally takes between 3-12 months depending on if you need bone grafting or not. Many times when you’re missing a tooth from birth, the bone does not form so it needs to be rebuilt. These can be very complex.

      Be sure you have the level of your gum line and evaluated for evenness prior to placing a dental implant in your upper front teeth. sometimes her teeth have not completely erupted and you have excessive gum tissue that needs to be removed so that your teeth don’t look so small. Your gum line is likely not completely mature at age 16, but that can be surgically altered to speed up and have a very nice cosmetic result.

      http://www.burbankdentalimplants.com/missing-one-tooth/

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry

  23. Casey says:

    I had a first bicuspid removed in February. After 4 months healing it was determined that more grafting was needed due to a curved root in adjacent tooth. Now 4 more months to heal again, hopefully implant of post and then 4 more months before tooth can be attached. I’m so discouraged with the length of this process. Is there any way for this to be accelerated?

    • Ramsey Amin DDS says:

      Hello Casey!

      Some dental implants take a short is one day. Some dental implants that are complex can take two to 2 ½ years to complete. Every situation is so unique. I recently treated a very attractive young female that was missing her front and center tooth. I had to take her through several stages of bone and gum grafting in order to bring everything back to ideal. Once we finally place the implants, it was allowed to heal for four months. After the four-month healing duration, I fabricated a temporary on a custom abutment to help groom her gum to be shaped correctly.

      I can go on and on with the detail but just keep in mind that your unique situation and the skill, training, judgment, and experience of your dentist are all factors in what determines how much time your implant will take.

      Here’s a link that will help you

      ;)
      Very respectfully,
      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry
      Burbank, CA

  24. john says:

    Dr. Amin,

    Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. I have been without four teeth for maybe 10 years, wearing a partial denture. One tooth on one side of my two upper front teeth, two on the other side of my upper teeth, and one on the bottom near the front are missing. With the teeth having been missing for over 10 years, will the bone mass be enough, and when I have the teeth replaced will the gums look natural?

    Thanks,

    John

    • Ramsey Amin DDS says:

      Hello John,

      If you have been missing teeth for 10 years, it is extremely likely that you will need a bone graft in order to have enough bone mass for dental implants. Because you haven’t used this bone for more than 10 years, natural atrophy has occurred and basically bone just melts away. When the bone melts away, the gum also shrinks too.

      It is very possible to get your teeth, gums and bone back to its original size and shape before or during the dental implant placement. It will likely require some extensive bone grafting to give you enough vertical and horizontal thickness for the dental implant posts.

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry
      Burbank California

  25. Tony Funkhouser says:

    For planning purposes, I have an appointment to have my 2 implants installed. What is this process since the molds have been taken and I assume the teeth have been made. Will this be my final visit and how long does this final appointment take? Are there follow-ups?

    Thank you,
    Tony

    • Ramsey Amin DDS says:

      Hello Tony,

      If you only had 2 simple dental implants, this will likely be your final visit. Expect to be there approximately one hour if both the final abutments and crowns are being installed. Also expect to have a dental x-ray taken at the end to verify that all cement has been removed. Follow-up visits are sometimes necessary in order to make sure your bite is accurate on the dental implants. I am assuming these are 2 dental implants for back teeth.

      Respectfully,

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry

  26. bill says:

    There is certainly a great deal to learn about this topic.
    I like all the points you’ve made.

  27. Craig says:

    I was in an accident many years ago and subsequently had to have all my teeth removed. At first, the dentist wanted to wait to see if the teeth would reseat, but they did not, so he pulled them all. I have tried dentures several times, but I cannot keep them in because the cause severe gagging. I have thought about getting implants, but I don’t know how this would work or what the cost would be. I have heard as high as $34,000 for a full set, but this is way out of my price range. I am very self-conscious when needing to speak in public, but I just cannot afford anywhere near that kind of money and I don’t have any insurance to even offset even a part of the cost. Are these figures correct or would the cost be more or less?

    • Ramsey Amin DDS says:

      Hi Craig,

      Replacing an entire jaw with dental implants is an extremely complex procedure. Replacing our body parts is never inexpensive. The cost you were quoted are definitely within range. Oftentimes extensive bone grafting is needed in addition to dental implants and porcelain fixed teeth such as Prettau.

      A fixed dental implant replacement can range from $25-$50,000 for just the upper or lower. A high resolution 3-D scan and a very skilled implant dentist can help you achieve what you’re looking for.

      Most of my patients that have this done spread the cost out over time using healthcare financing such as CareCredit.



      I hope you’re able to do something soon before your bone shrinks so badly that treatment becomes even more expensive and complex.

      Very respectfully,

      Ramsey A. Amin, D.D.S.
      Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology /Implant Dentistry
      Fellow-American Academy of Implant Dentistry
      Burbank, California

  28. Mary Anne says:

    Dr.
    I had a root canal on # 5 done six weeks ago. There is still discomfort in the area of that molar. Have been on a six day medrol pack and ten days of amoxicillin. Have been checked by endo twice . Tonight I saw a tiny bump in the gum above the molar, does this mean an abcess and if so will I lose the molar? Thank you in advance for your reply.

    • Ramsey Amin DDS says:

      Hello Mary,
      Give it some time. It is too early to make sense judgment that you will lose the tooth. Keep us all posted with your progress.

      Ramsey Amin DDS

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