Dental implants are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel, and function like natural teeth. The person who has lost teeth regains the ability to eat virtually anything and can smile with confidence, knowing that teeth appear natural and that facial contours will be preserved. The implants themselves are tiny titanium posts that are placed into the jawbone where teeth are missing. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. In addition, implants can help preserve facial structure, preventing the bone deterioration, which occurs when teeth are missing.
If, like many others, you feel implant dentistry is the choice for you, we ask that you undergo a dental/radiographic examination and health history. It is sometimes necessary to have a Dentascan, a specialized form of CAT scan to evaluate your jawbones and be sure there is adequate space within the bone to successfully place a dental implant. During these consultation visits, your doctor will address your specific needs and considerations. Your questions and concerns are important to us and our team will work with you very closely to help make your procedure a success. We will work closely with your restorative dentist to help provide the best outcome possible.
Dental implants are metal anchors that act as tooth root substitutes. They are surgically placed into the jawbone. Small posts are then attached to the implant, which protrude through the gums. These posts provide stable anchors for artificial replacement teeth.
For most patients, the placement of dental implants involves one or two surgical procedures. First, implants are placed within your jawbone. For the first three to six months following surgery, the implants, which are placed beneath the surface of the gums, gradually bond with the jawbone. You should be able to wear temporary tooth replacements and eat a soft diet during this time.
After the implant has bonded to the jawbone, the second phase begins. We will uncover the implants, if necessary, and attach a small healing collar. After two weeks your restorative dentist will be able to start making your new teeth. An impression must be taken. Then posts or attachments can be connected to the implants. The teeth replacements are then made over the posts or attachments. The entire procedure usually takes six to eight months. Most patients do not experience any disruption in their daily life.
Careful management of extraction sockets after tooth extraction prevents unsightly bone loss and a better cosmetic outcome of tooth replacement. It also allows for the future placement of dental implants by preserving bone contour and volume to allow for successful implant surgery.
Guided Bone Regeneration
Over a period of time, the jawbone associated with missing teeth atrophies or is desorbed. This often leaves a condition in which there is poor quality and quantity of bone suitable for placement of dental implants. In these situations, most patients are not candidates for placement of dental implants.
We now have the ability to grow bone in some areas where needed. This gives us the opportunity to place implants of proper length and width, and it also gives us a chance to more effectively restore esthetic appearance and functionality.