Dental implants are a great way to replace missing teeth and also provide a fixed solution to having removable partial or complete dentures. Implants provide excellent support and stability for these dental appliances.
Dental implants are artificial roots and teeth (usually titanium) that are surgically placed into the upper or lower jaw bone by a dentist or Periodontist – a specialist of the gums and supporting bone. The teeth attached to implants are very natural looking and often enhance or restore a patient’s smile!
Dental implants are very strong, stable, and durable and will last many years, but on occasion, they will have to be re-tightened or replaced due to normal wear.
Reasons for dental implants:
- Replace one or more missing teeth without affecting adjacent teeth.
- Resolve joint pain or bite problems caused by teeth shifting into missing tooth space.
- Restore a patient’s confident smile.
- Restore chewing, speech, and digestion.
- Restore or enhance facial tissues.
- Support a bridge or denture, making them more secure and comfortable.
What does getting dental implants involve?
The process of getting implants requires a number of visits over several months.
X-rays and impressions (molds) are taken of the jaw and teeth to determine bone, gum tissue, and spacing available for an implant. While the area is numb, the implant will be surgically placed into the bone and allowed to heal and integrate itself onto the bone for up to six months. Depending on the type of implant, a second surgery may be required in order to place the “post” that will hold the artificial tooth in place. With other implants the post and anchor are already attached and placed at the same time.
After several weeks of healing the artificial teeth are made and fitted to the post portion of the anchor. Because several fittings may be required, this step may take one to two months to complete. After a healing period, the artificial teeth are securely attached to the implant, providing excellent stability and comfort to the patient.
You will receive care instructions when your treatment is completed. Good oral hygiene, eating habits, and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new implant.
Dental Implant Options
The dental implant, typically made of titanium, is placed in the jawbone and fuses (or integrates) with your natural bone. The dental implant forms the stable and sturdy base for your replacement teeth.
There is no better, long-lasting option to restoring a missing tooth than a dental implant fitted with a crown.
Replacing multiple teeth using dental implants with individual crowns or with an implant-supported fixed bridge gives your teeth a level of fit, feel and functionality that is not possible with other treatment options.
All Teeth (Full Arch)
Traditional replacement of a complete set of upper or lower teeth (arch) using a dental implant is completed over multiple visits.
Immediate Load Dental Implants (Same Day Implants)
Immediate Load Dental Implants, also called "same day implants," allow placement of a temporary tooth (crown) during the same appointment as dental implant placement. The long-term custom crown will be placed in about three to six months. The procedure is best for patients who have enough natural bone and an implant that is secure enough to support immediate placement and pressure on the new temporary tooth.
All-on-4 is an alternative approach to place a full arch (top or bottom set) of fixed, replacement teeth. The All-on-4 concept involves placing implants in available bone, thereby avoiding the need for bone grafting. Special abutments allow a temporary set of replacement teeth to be placed the same day and used with a modified diet while gum tissues heal and the implants integrate with natural bone. After about six months, the final teeth are then placed and the patient is able to resume a normal diet.
The All-on-4 approach involves multiple appointments, typically including one or two consultation and planning visits, one to place the dental implants and temporary teeth, check-ups during the six month healing period, and another appointment to place the replacement teeth.