The unsavory saga of my bad tooth continued today. In only two hours of oral surgery, my periodontist implanted a titanium screw into my jaw. Did it hurt? Only briefly before I flung my hands in the air to indicate that it was time for more pain medication. The procedure was comparable to the extraction of my bad tooth, but it included a bone graft and stitches. The post-op holding gauze in my mouth and drooling everywhere was also comparable, but with forewarning of the drool, I made sure to keep my head up. I looked either snooty or optimistic all afternoon today.
The implant is a little titanium screw with a hollow end oriented at the surface of the gums. I am not sure if the screw is actually screwed into place, but I did see my periodontist do some kind of ratcheting. It would be cool if the implant had some bionic man type function. At least it is titanium, my favorite of all metals. And it is good that I like titanium, because I will have a piece of it sticking out of my gums for the next couple of months. At least with the empty socket I could pretend to be a hobo or a pirate!
No photos this time, the area of surgery just looks too gross. Instead, enjoy these artist's renderings.
Or if you want a "professional" artists rendering, you can search the web for dental implants. There are tons of pictures and websites explaining these miracles of titanium making.
The bone in my upper jaw was insufficient, so the periodontist added some extra bone making material. The fake bone powder will encourage bone growth and eventually be replaced by bone. The sucky thing about the bone graft was the effect on my gums. For some reason my periodontist had to pull a huge swath of gum back to pack in the fake bone. Now I get to enjoy stitches in my mouth. I guess that means no tortilla chips for awhile.
Where do I go from now? After about two months my periodontist will screw a post into the implant and then attach a fake tooth. Or maybe my regular dentist will attach the permanent fake tooth. I paid in advance so I suppose it doesn't really matter. Until that wonderful day when I will be whole again, I'll just have to enjoy my new look.
Tagged: personal stories