What Are Dental Implants?
The implants themselves are tiny titanium posts that are surgically placed into the jawbone where teeth are missing. These metal anchors act as tooth root substitutes. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. Small posts that protrude through the gums are then attached to the implant. These posts provide stable anchors for artificial replacement teeth. Implants also help preserve facial structure, preventing bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are missing.
Dental implants are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel, and function like natural teeth. Dental implants are changing the way people live. The person who has lost teeth regains the ability to eat virtually anything, all while feeling confident that their teeth appear natural.
For most patients, placing dental implants involves one or two surgical procedures. First, implants are placed in your jawbone. For the first three to six months following surgery, the implants are gradually bonding with the jawbone. You should be able to wear temporary dentures and eat a soft diet during this time.
After the implant has bonded to the jawbone, the second phase begins. Your doctor may uncover the implants and attach small posts that protrude through the gums. The implants eventually act as anchors for the artificial crowns, bridges, or dentures. After the artificial teeth are placed, these posts will not be visible. The entire procedure usually takes six to eight months, and most patients will experience minimal disruption in their daily life.