Dental implants can be an ideal tooth replacement solution for anyone suffering from a missing tooth or set of teeth to give them the dazzling, functional and natural-looking smile they’ve always wanted.
Traditional dental implants are small titanium posts that are inserted directly into one’s tooth root, which serves as a sturdy foundation for prosthetic fixed or removable dental restorations. Titanium is chosen as the material of choice because of its durability and biocompatibility in most patients.
The first step to getting dental implants is to first find out if you are a qualified candidate for dental implants. Healthy individuals with sufficient bone left in their jaw to hold dental implants in place are considered qualified candidates. For those few who do not have sufficient bone left in their jaw – whether as a result of disease or tooth loss – can still become a candidate after some preliminary bone grafting procedures are completed. During your initial consultation with us, we will take x-rays of your teeth, gums and jawbone and review your medical and dental history to determine if you are a good candidate for titanium dental implants. Some patients who are allergic to metals may want to try material alternatives like zirconia dental implants.
Once you are qualified as a candidate for dental implants and your treatment plan is prepared, you are ready for your dental implant procedure. If a tooth needs to be extracted before a dental implant is placed, both may take place on the same visit. Before inserting your dental implant into your tooth root, your dentist will give a sedative to put you at ease during your procedure. The titanium post is placed into the bone socket of the missing tooth, then left to heal. As the site heals, the dental implant will fuse gradually with the jawbone, anchoring it securely into place. While your dental implant heals, a temporary dental prosthetic, such as a denture, can be used.
While your dental implant bonds with the jawbone, a custom dental restoration is made just for you by a team of lab technicians. Upon your next visit, another small titanium piece called an abutment is attached to the dental implant, connecting your implant to your dental restoration. Dental restorations may be in the form of a single custom-made crown, several crowns or full or partial set of permanent dentures that are secured onto the implants.
Post-op care for your dental implants is the same as caring for your natural teeth, including twice-daily brushing and flossing and regular visits to your dentist for exams and professional teeth cleanings.
If you are interested in learning more about whether or not dental implants are the right solution for you, contact our office to schedule your initial consultation.