Part 1: Out with the old…redux

27 January 2016 § 2 Comments

Well over a month ago my left upper premolar was removed because the tooth was irreparable.

Today, I thought everyone might like to see a couple of x-rays of the natural tooth before it was removed:

The bone surrounding the root was of most interest to Lars-Magnus Almgren, the clinician who placed my implant; he needed to know that there was enough bone present to support an implant. X-rays confirmed there was ample bone in the spaces between the surrounding teeth and the sinus cavity above.

To confirm the bone volume circumferentially, a different type of picture was taken. A CBCT, mine taken at the Brånemark Center in Gothenburg, is a sectional scan that provides clinicians with a 3D image of the entire jaw, which then used to plan dental implant placement.

Although not my case, the above screenshot gives you an idea of the planning control a clinician can benefit from, before actually performing surgery. Even for “routine” cases, this extra investigation goes a long way in avoiding complications. But this level of sophistication does come with a higher price tag.

Coming up next: Part 2: In with the new.

Resistance is futile

22 December 2015 § Leave a comment

Day two as a cyborg is unremarkable.

Despite all the hype of becoming part of the hive mind, receiving a dental implant is nothing short of unimpressive.

At least, that’s my impression so far.

Following a good night’s sleep, I awoke this morning refreshed from yesterday’s ordeal.

Since I barely remember the family shopping trip after the surgery is an indication that I sufficiently numbed.

Today, I feel quite normal – whatever that means.

I have no signs of swelling, and only minor soreness in my mouth.

This is good, because like everyone else, my plate is full in anticipation of the holidays.

Anyway, I’ll write again if my situation changes.

Stage one complete

21 December 2015 § Leave a comment

Whew! Today’s implant surgery went without a hitch.

I was taken care of very nicely, with the whole process explained forehand.

The implant is installed and instead of it being covered (sutured) during healing (hopefully 2-3 months), a healing abutment was placed instead.

Doing this eliminates the need for a second surgery to uncover the implant once healed. When I return in February or March, the healing abutment is easily unscrewed to expose the implant for stage two – the restoration phase.

Regarding discomfort and pain. I actually didn’t feel anything until the local anesthetic wore off around 5:30 p.m. Then I felt that I had been through something traumatic.

But a couple of Ibuprofen and a bag of ice have made me happy again. I was also warned that there could be swelling and possible bruising, thankfully I am experiencing neither.

I requested my old tooth, but I forgot it at the clinic; I’ll post a picture when I have it.

All in all, a great success, carried out beautifully by Dr. Almgren and staff.

T-minus four hours

21 December 2015 § Leave a comment

Fingers crossed for a routine and painless procedure.

In a little less than four hours, I will sit down in what I hope will be comfy chair and undergo a procedure that hundreds of thousand of people have gone through before me.

When asked by my wife, Turi, if I am nervous, I answer ‘no.’ And this is the truth. The only thing that I am anxious about is the sound.

Of all the things when visiting the dentist, it is the sound of the drills that give me the most problem.

When I was young, dentists didn’t have the new ultra-high speed drills that they have now. The ones I remember looked more like this:

hand_drill_IMG_1883

And they did not produce the ultrasonic sound that the new ones do. It’s this sound that set my teeth on edge…

So, besides having a big lunch this morning, I plan on bringing ear plugs to my surgery.

I just hope I will be able to hear my dentist’s instructions!

Tomorrow’s the day

20 December 2015 § Leave a comment

Eat a big lunch in the morning…so I’ve been instructed.

Since moving to Sweden, I’ve been writing about dental implants, the procedures for placing them, and the science supporting them.

I’ve produced material to help dental professionals convince their patients that dental implants are the right solution for their missing or damaged teeth. At the same time, I’ve tried to convince these same professionals that some dental implants are better than others.

Well, tomorrow is the day I literally put my money where my mouth is, and experience first hand, or more correctly “first mouth,” all the things I’ve been promoting for nearly ten years.

I’ve already received numerous comments from friends who have already undergone a similar procedure. And I happy that their experiences have been positive.

Check back tomorrow evening to see how it went for me.

Two days and counting

18 December 2015 § Leave a comment

After nearly ten years writing about dental implants, it’s finally my turn.

On Monday, 21 December 2015, I will put my mouth in the capable hands of Lars-Magnus Almgren and DENTSPLY Implants, and receive my first (hopefully last) dental implant.

It isn’t that I’m not looking forward to the experience, I’m just a firm believer in keeping natural teeth as long as possible. Unfortunately, my upper left premolar is beyond repair and needs to be replaced.

At 50, I guess I should consider myself lucky. Counting the removal of two wisdom teeth, this is only the second time I’ve had major work done in my mouth.

Check back often and stay up-to-date on my experiences undergoing dental implant therapy.

Commuting woes

1 September 2015 § Leave a comment

So the story goes… Today’s commuter train to Gothenburg is cancelled.

I realize that this is a minor inconvenience in the whole scheme of things, but it really happens far too often and, based on their expressions, I’m confident my fellow commuters agree. 

 

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