What Are Dental Implants?
A dental implant is the closest thing to a natural tooth. Both have a crown (the visible part used to chew food), and a root that’s anchored into the jaw and holds the tooth securely under the gum. The difference is dental implants are made from titanium—the same time-tested material used by surgeons for artificial joints, ensuring they will last for a long time.
What to Expect
- To replace the tooth, the surgeon replaces the root with a small titanium rod. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for the new tooth. A support post (abutment) is placed on the implant and the crown is placed on top of the post. In many cases, a temporary replacement tooth may be attached to the implant immediately after placement.
- A local anesthetic is administered to numb the area where the implant will be placed. Additional options for our patient’s comfort are discussed at the consultation appointment.
- When the patient is ready, the surgeon makes a small incision in the gum tissue to reveal the bone, creates space using surgical instruments, and gently inserts the titanium implant. The top of the implant may or may not be visible through the gum.
- After the initial phase of healing, the surgeon places an abutment (support post) or a healing cap onto the implant during a brief follow-up visit. This allows gum tissue to mature and provides access to the implant.
- The length of healing time varies from person to person, depending upon the quality and quantity of bone. There are many options available for temporary teeth during this phase. In some cases, implants may be restored immediately after placement. Our dentist will discuss these options during the consultation.
- Follow-up care is usually needed to ensure the mouth is healing well and to determine when the jaw is ready for the restorative phase of the treatment.
- Most frequently, one implant is placed for each missing tooth. Whether it’s one tooth or all the teeth being replaced, our dentist will complete the restoration by fitting the replacement tooth (crown) to the dental implant.
Bone Grafting for Implants
A Better Quality of Life
Dental Implants are an investment in your health as well as your appearance. A full set of teeth makes eating a pleasure again, making it easier to eat a balanced, healthy diet, while preserving the contours of the face, helping maintain a youthful appearance.
Call our practice and book an appointment to find out more.