Dental implants are a permanent solution to the problem of missing teeth.
Unlike dentures or partials, you won’t experience problems with slipping or sliding, and they don’t require a specialized daily care routine beyond regular brushing and flossing. Unlike bridges, dental implants do not require alteration to your existing, healthy teeth. In fact, bridges can be supported by implants for fewer alterations during a more complex restoration.
Do I Need Dental Implants?
For many people, missing teeth present a mostly cosmetic problem. This is a fair concern: Missing teeth carry a stigma, and people with missing teeth may find themselves unfairly judged in many social settings.
Unfortunately, the problem of missing teeth goes beyond the cosmetic issue. Missing teeth put additional stress on your remaining teeth and can lead to damage, including fractures and even further tooth loss. When you are missing teeth, you may find it difficult or even painful to enjoy the fresh, healthy foods you need for proper nutrition and nourishment.
Even more concerning, one or more missing teeth can eventually lead to significant bone loss in your jaw as the tissue becomes atrophied from lack of use. Over time, this diminishing bone can lead to visible changes in your face and cause you to appear prematurely aged.
Dental implants will stop this process in its tracks, something that even dentures and partials cannot do.
Am I a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?
While most healthy adults are eligible for dental implants, some health conditions can change the effectiveness of the implants.
When you visit our office to discuss dental implants, we will ask you a number of questions about your health history. These questions are important to help us determine whether dental implants are the right option for you. Don’t worry – even if you do have a health concern, we are likely to still be able to work with you. We just need to know about it so that we can account for it and take any necessary precautions.
How Are Dental Implants Placed?
Prior to beginning the actual implant process, we will perform a full examination including x-rays. Because the implant is attached directly to your jaw, we need to know the condition of your bone. If necessary, you could be a candidate for grafts and other procedures to build up your jaw bone.
The titanium post that is the actual implant will then be placed. In most cases, the surgical placement of the implant is done in our office, so you do not have to worry about scheduling multiple appointments with different doctors. Once you have healed sufficiently, you will be ready to have your implant restored. For most implants, we are able to restore your implant in one visit with our CAD/CAM crown system.
For some cases, including most upper front tooth implants, you may need to have two visits so that your restoration can be customized to achieve the best esthetic results. The fit and appearance of your restoration will be checked, and your implant will be complete.
For more information about dental implants or to schedule an appointment, please call our practice today.