Placement Procedure

Having a dental implant placed is a routine procedure carried out in the dental surgery.  The procedure is carried out under local anaesthesia and under sterile conditions. While this is a routine procedure to us here, we realise you may have many questions regarding the procedure.  We hope the following instructions will help you feel more prepared for your up-coming appointment.

1.  Please ensure you have had a light meal before your appointment.  An empty stomach may cause you to feel nauseous, or in some instances, it may cause you to feel faint.

2.  Nearly all of our patients drive themselves to and from their placement appointment, however if you feel unsure about driving yourself home, arrange for a friend or partner to accompany you.  If you prefer, we can phone your escort for you when we know what time you will be ready to leave.  Patients should not use public transport after the placement appointment.

3.  If you feel you are very worried or nervous about the procedure, we can arrange a prescription of a mild sedative (usually Valium) for you.  The sedative should make you feel very relaxed and less anxious before and during the procedure.  If you choose to have a sedative you must have a friend or partner to drive you to and from the surgery.

4.  Local Anaesthesia – the implant placement will be carried out under local anaesthesia, just the same as other routine dental procedures (eg. Fillings).  We will first apply a numbing solution to the gum before a series of dental injections.  You will be given a long-acting local anaesthetic that should last up to four hours.

5.  Sterile Conditions – because the procedure involves the implant being placed in your bone, it must be done under sterile conditions so that an infection does not occur.  This means that our staff will be wearing masks, hats and sterile gloves and gowns.  We will cover you with a sterile drape.  This drape is made of paper, it is very light, and you are able to see and speak with us during the procedure.  All instruments and equipment used during the placement procedure has been sterilised according to Australian Standards.  You will notice that we will be opening many sterile packets of equipment during our preparation for the procedure, so we warn you, it can get a little noisy during our preparation!

6.  After all of our preparation, Dr Liddelow can begin the surgery.  (You may need to have a tooth extracted first.  If so, this will be done very gently to ensure no bone is damaged during the extraction.)  On average, it takes about 30 minutes from start to finish to prepare the bone and then place the implant.  You may or may not have sutures placed.  If you do have sutures, these will remain in your mouth over a period of a few weeks.

7.  After the procedure has been completed, we will remove the sterile drape and our sterile gowns.  Dr Liddelow will discuss the treatment he has carried out for you, and give you instructions to care for your mouth.  When we are sure your fully recovered from the procedure, you will be free to go.  We will give you a detailed sheet of instructions to take home with you.

8.  Rest of the day:  it is recommended that you take it easy for the rest of the day.  Strenuous exercise or labour is not recommended.  Most patients choose not to return to work for the rest of the day. (A medical certificate can be provided to cover any time you may need to be away from work.)

9.  Diet:  You will need a soft diet for the day of the surgery, and a few days post-operatively.  A ‘soft’ diet simply means no foods you have to bite and tear (eg steak) or hard foods, such as toffee or apples.  ‘Soft’ foods can include pasta, fish, yoghurt, rice, and cooked vegetables.

10.  If you have any questions after reading these instructions, please do not hesitate to phone our Treatment Co-ordinator, Veronica, and she can have them answered for you.