What are Dental Implants?
A natural tooth consists of a root and a crown. If you compare natural teeth to implant-supported replacement teeth, you’ll see they have the same basic parts. Both have a crown (the visible part used to chew food). Both have a root that holds the tooth securely under the gum and is anchored into the jaw. The difference is that the implant is made of titanium – the same time-tested material used by surgeons for artificial joints. When you lose a tooth, you lose both the root and the crown. To replace the tooth, the surgeon first replaces the root with a small dental implant.
Time is allowed for bone to heal and grow around the dental implant. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. A support post (abutment) is then placed on the implant and a new replacement tooth (crown) is placed on top of the abutment. In many cases a temporary replacement tooth can be attached to the implant immediately after it is placed. If all of your teeth are missing, a variety of treatment options are available to support the replacement teeth.
Dental Implant Procedure
Dental implants are changing the way people live. Patients are rediscovering the comfort and confidence to eat, speak, laugh and enjoy life. Dental implants are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel and function like natural teeth. The implants are tiny titanium posts which are placed into the jawbone where teeth are missing. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. In addition dental implants can help preserve facial structure, preventing the bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are missing.
Dental implants are metal anchors that act as tooth root substitutes. They are surgically placed into the jawbone. Small posts are then attached to the implant, which protrude through the gums. These posts provide stable anchors for artificial replacement teeth.
For most patients, the placement of dental implants involves two surgical procedures. First, implants are placed within your jawbone. For the first three to six months following surgery, the implants are beneath the surface of the gums, gradually bonding with the jawbone. You should be able to wear temporary dentures and eat a soft diet during this time. At the same time, your restorative dentist designs the final bridgework or denture, which will ultimately improve both function and aesthetics.
After the implant has bonded to the jawbone, the second phase begins. The surgeon will uncover the implants and attach a small healing collar. Drs. Kademani and associates can then start making your new teeth. An impression is taken. Posts or attachments can then be connected to the implants. The replacement teeth are made over the posts or attachments. The entire procedure usually takes six to eight months. Most patients do not experience any disruption in their daily life.
Evaluation for Dental Implants
If implant dentistry is the choice for you, we ask that you undergo a dental/radiographic examination and health history. During these consultation visits, your specific needs and considerations will be addressed. Your questions and concerns are important to us. Our team will work closely with you to help make your procedure a success.