The most basic stereotype about going to the dentist is that it will be painful. Even kids start to fear their dentist at a young age and carry this anxiety into adulthood. In other cases, their dental history as well as hearsay from other people will compound the idea that anything that involves handling of teeth will induce pain.
Essentially, the more complicated and invasive a procedure is, the more likely that pain or discomfort can be felt during and after treatment. This is why anaesthesia during the dental visit and painkillers are prescribed afterwards.
The placement of dental implants is a surgical procedure and involves incising of the gums and drilling of the bone. As much as these terminologies seem very severe, the use of profound anaesthesia results to little or no discomfort at all.
In patients who have insufficient bone to support placement of dental implants, other additional procedures such as bone grafts and sinus surgery is needed. These procedures consume more time and deals with manipulating more structures. In some of these cases, local anaesthesia will not be able to cover these procedures and the dentist will decide to recommend IV sedation/general anaesthesia. This kind of sedation has become increasingly popular and in demand to patients who have very low tolerance to pain or simply do not want to be awake and aware of the procedures while they are being done. It is however, important to know that this option might not always be available and will also add additional cost to your dental bill.
Some tenderness and swelling can also be felt after the procedure and painkillers (usually Ibuprofen) will be prescribed. Some dentists may recommend the immediate intake of these narcotics after surgery so that it can take over the effects of the anaesthesia which will wear off around half an hour post-surgery. In other instances, when the handling of the patient has been excellent, they usually do not feel the need to take their pain medications and can go back to work immediately right after.
Amount of discomfort can also be attributed to the dentist’s skills. The more experienced the dentist is, the faster the procedure is done. Gentle handling of the tissues and good infection control practices will also decrease the chances of discomfort and lessen the swelling that may happen afterwards.
Choosing a highly skilled dentist will benefit you not just with the outcome but with the handling of your teeth and gums. If you can feel any pain during the treatment, do not hesitate to tell the dentist as they can adjust or change the anaesthesia. Following the post-operation instructions and taking your pain medications will more likely make you feel as if you did not just have a major surgery done at all.