Dental Implants

Dental implants are a popular and permanent solution to missing teeth. The implant mimics the root of a tooth, helping to preserve the bone density in your jaw.

Dental implants are a popular and effective way to replace missing teeth and are designed to blend in with your other teeth. They are an excellent long-term option for restoring your smile. In fact, the development and use of implants is one of the biggest advances in dentistry in the past 40 years. Dental implants are made up of titanium and other materials that are compatible with the human body. They are posts that are surgically placed in the upper or lower jaw, where they function as a sturdy anchor for replacement teeth.

How They Work

Dental implants are surgically placed in your jawbone, where they serve as the roots of missing teeth. Because the titanium in the implants fuses with your jawbone, the implants won’t slip, make noise or cause bone damage the way fixed bridgework or dentures might. The materials in implants can’t decay, unlike your own teeth which support regular bridgework.

In general, dental implants may be right for you if you:

How You Prepare

The planning process for dental implants may involve a variety of specialists. Because dental implants require one or more surgical procedures, you must have a thorough evaluation to prepare for the process, including a:

  • Comprehensive dental exam: You will have dental X-rays and 3D images taken so that models can be made of your teeth and jaw.
  • Review of your medical history: Tell your doctor about any medical conditions and any medications you take, including prescription and over-the-counter drugs and supplements. If you have certain heart conditions or orthopedic implants, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics before surgery to help prevent infection.

Advantages of Dental Implants

Parts of Dental Implants

Dental implants typically have three parts:

You can use dental implants to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth or a full upper and/or lower set of teeth. If you need to restore a full arch, you may be a perfect candidate for the full mouth treatment.

Different Types Of Implants

Full Mouth Implants

Patients who need to replace a full upper and/or lower set of teeth can now receive full mouth implants. An oral surgeon will place 4 implants and then attach a full arch of teeth, giving the procedure its name.

Multiple Implants

Occasionally a patient is missing more than one tooth, but still has healthy gums and surrounding teeth. In this case, multiple implants are the best solution. Two fixtures are implanted and the crown is attached, leaving the natural teeth intact.

Single Tooth Implant

If you have lost a single tooth due to an accident or from periodontal disease, that one tooth can be replaced using a dental implant. Your new tooth will look and function just like your other natural teeth.

Frequently Asked Questions

While discomfort can vary between people, most individuals report getting their dental implant was much less uncomfortable than they anticipated it to be. During the surgical dental implant procedure, the dentist will give you an anesthetic, so you should feel minimal discomfort if any.
For two days following your surgery, drink liquids and consume soft foods only. Examples include yogurt, smooth soups, cottage cheese, ice cream, and mashed potatoes.
Very rarely does an individual’s body reject an implant. The jawbone usually readily accepts the dental implant. The very few rejections are due to rare allergies to the titanium alloy that make up the implant. Another reason why an implant could fail is if you don’t take proper care of it after your surgery. Without excellent oral hygiene, natural teeth fail and fall out eventually. Dental implants are no different. When you take good care of your teeth and your implants, it will help prevent gum decay and structure failure later on.
You can’t remove dental implants because they’re fixed right into your bone, replacing your teeth in a way that’s closest to your natural teeth.
Dental implants can last a lifetime if you take care of them properly by regularly brushing, flossing and following your dentist’s recommendations. While your dentist can’t guarantee the lifetime success of an implant, they can provide you with suggestions and guidelines on how to take good care of your teeth.
Typically, dental insurance doesn’t cover implants. However, more companies are realizing the need for these procedures, so some dental insurance plans cover implants. In many cases, your insurance may help pay for the crown the dentist places on your implant. You may want to call your insurance provider and see if you have coverage for your implants.

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