What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants refer to the artificial replacement teeth inserted into the jawbone. The technology of using dental implants to replace missing teeth started in 1965. And, since then, the technique has continued to advance in providing people with unnoticeable reproductions to their natural teeth.
A dental implant takes the place of a missing tooth. When you examine a dental implant, you will find that it has the same components as a natural tooth. Both natural and implanted teeth have a crown which is the part of the tooth that you see and use for chewing. Both the implant and the natural tooth have a root which is anchored in the jawbone under the gum tissue holding the tooth securely. With implants, the root is made of titanium which is a material that has been used by surgeons for many years to replace joints. Titanium is bio-compatible with the human body as the body does not reject it and it is non-toxic. It is also very strong and corrosion resistant.
When a tooth is extracted, you also loose the root. In order to replace the tooth, you must also replace the root with a small artificial root made of titanium. Once the implant is placed into the jaw, time is required in order for the bone to heal and become one with the implant. As the bone begins to heal it also grows around the dental implant which in turn creates a strong foundation for an artificial crown.
Tooth Replacement Options
There are several options for restoring your missing teeth. Dr. Dhadli is a specialist in various tooth replacement options and she will recommend the one that best suits your preferences and budget.
If you have lost one or more teeth, or you just want to improve your dentures, then you are a suitable candidate for any tooth replacement option such as dental implants. The good news is that dental implants function just like natural teeth; for example, they protect your bone structure, preserve your oral health, and give you good appearance.
Here are the various available tooth replacement options.
A bridge is a tooth replacement option that fills the gap where one or more teeth are lost. A fixed bridge covers the area where the teeth are missing and thus restores the form and function of your teeth. To create a bridge, two natural teeth need to be shaved or contoured to keep the bridge in position.
A dental flipper, which refers to a removable and lightweight plastic tooth having a plastic retainer, is the easiest way to replace lost teeth. Usually, it is used as a temporary way to replace missing tooth as the patient pursues other more viable treatment options or for healing after a dental implant has been done.
A partial denture is a plate with one or more replacement teeth on it. It can be taken in and out of the mouth and may be made of plastic or a mix of both metal and plastic. Wire clips are normally used to hold it into place in the mouth.
A complete denture is the most common method of restoring missing teeth in the upper jaw or the lower jaw. Some individuals readily adapt to dentures while others find them uncomfortable. Complete dentures depend on the remaining ridge of gum and underlying bone to stay into position in the mouth.
A dental implant, which generally refers to an artificial tooth inserted into the jawbone, is the ideal solution for restoring your appearance and ensuring you enjoy good health. Dental implants are comfortable and provide a good foundation for teeth while maintaining the strength of the jaws, and can give support to other teeth.
The substance used for making implants is completely biocompatible. The bone grows to the implant and intimately bonds itself to it, which makes the implant very strong and comfortable for nearly any patient. In contrast to most fixed bridges, dental implants are permanent and very attractive. More so, implants do not destroy any healthy teeth.
Why Dental Implants Are Recommended?
There are several reasons why dental implants are preferable over the other traditional methods of replacing missing teeth. Here are a few.
The structure of the healthy teeth surrounding the missing one is not destroyed. Other replacement options like fixed bridge require neighboring teeth to be shaved or contoured in order to keep the bridge in place.
Dental implants may last for a lifetime. Unlike bridges.
Dental implants are very comfortable, convenient, and attractive – just like natural teeth. They do not need to be routinely removed and cleaned like the other replacement options.
Dental implants will allow you to smile and talk confidently without any worries. Dentures or flippers can accidentally leave the mouth and cause embarrassment.
Dental Implants Presentation
To provide you with a better understanding of dental implants, we have provided the following multimedia presentation. Many common questions pertaining to dental implants are discussed.
The Dental Implant Surgical Procedure
Local anesthesia is normally sufficient for numbing the section where the implant will be inserted into the jawbone. In addition, depending on the need, other types of sedation can be used such as nitrous oxide and intravenous sedation.
Once you are comfortable, we will then undergo the following procedure.
1) Create a small incision in the gum tissue to expose the crest of jawbone.
2) Create pilot holes using a special instrument
3) Gently place the implant in the prepared site
The peak of the implant is normally seen through the gum. At times, it is advisable to allow the implant to be enclosed by the gum tissue during the initial phases of healing.
The entire process for placing a dental implant normally lasts 30 to 60 minutes. If there are several implants to be placed, more time will be required.
Healing After The Implant
After completion of the dental surgery procedures, the healing process starts. The healing stage can take several months from the beginning to the end, anywhere from 3 to 6 months . The amount of time for healing to complete varies from one patient to another, mostly relying on the quality and quantity of bone. Most of the time is dedicated to waiting for the new bone to develop in the patient’s jaw.
We will provide you with information on how to care for your implants properly during the healing phase. Your implants will need routine checking to make sure they are secure and in good health.
At Westside OMS, we use the Ostell ISQ which allows us to measure the stability of the implanted titanium root from every direction possible. A support post known as an abutment will then be placed on the implant that will be the connection between the implant and the crown.
“Don’t be afraid to Smile.”
For years I’d felt like a part of my body was missing — because my teeth were. My dentist told me that dental implants would make me feel and look a lot better. OK, I said. Now, I’m thrilled. I can smile, eat anything, and enjoy a good laugh with my friends.