What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that provide a permanent base for fixed, replacement teeth. Compared to dentures, bridges and crowns, implants are a popular and effective long-term solution for people who suffer from:
- Missing teeth
- Failing teeth
- Chronic dental problems
Implants fit and function like normal teeth, and are quickly becoming the new standard in tooth replacement. Dental implants involve a small titanium screw that is surgically placed into the jaw bone, acting as a replacement root for teeth. Implants can replace single or multiple missing teeth and will eventually fuse to the bone tissue in your gums creating additional support. The use of implants creates a natural looking smile and enhance your appearance.
Patients with missing teeth can replace them with a permanent alternative to traditional dentures that looks and feels like natural teeth. Offered by our Gilbert dental office, dental implants are custom fit to your mouth, and help with proper chewing and speaking. As they become permanent fixtures of your mouth, they require no additional maintenance outside of your normal dental routine.
Full Mouth Dental Implants
If you’re missing all of your teeth, an implant-supported full bridge or full dentures can replace them. These implants will replace both your lost natural teeth and some of the roots.
In addition to looking and functioning like natural teeth, implant-supported full bridges (or dentures) are designed to be long lasting. Implant-supported full bridges are more comfortable and stable than conventional dentures, allowing you to retain more natural biting and chewing abilities.
Since implant-supported full bridges and dentures will replace some of your tooth roots, your bone will be better preserved.
What are the Benefits of Dental Implants?
Implants can improve the overall look of your smile, granting you with a more polished and natural appearance. Your implants will feel just like natural teeth and involve none of the fears associated with traditional removable restorations that can slip or fall out. Implants are maintained just like your natural teeth and involve minimal downtime and pain. Dental implants also tend to last longer than alternative tooth replacement methods and are known to restore facial structure. Implants can also provide support for existing bridges or dentures.
Dental Implant Procedure
Depending on the number and type of implants, and replacement teeth you receive, the entire process can take anywhere from three to nine months to complete. By scheduling a consultation at our Gilbert dental office, we can assess your oral health for an implant procedure and make sure that your dental treatment is specific to your needs. Typically the process includes:
The dentist will thoroughly examine your mouth, including taking X-rays, discuss the various implant options, and develop a treatment plan for your implant.
The next step involves the dentist placing the implant in your jawbone where your tooth is missing. Although each patient is unique, typically patients can return to work the next day and resume a fairly normal schedule. Post-implant discomfort is similar to that of any other dental surgery. You may experience some swelling, bruising, minor bleeding and/or pain. Most patients are able to manage and treat these symptoms with over-the-counter medications such as Tylenol and Ibuprofen.
As you heal, your implant and jawbone will grow together during a process called osseointegration , forming a strong foundation for your implant. Overall, the healing process can take several months. Typically patients are on a soft food diet for the first few weeks to ensure the implant heals correctly.
Once your implant is fully healed, and has fused with your jawbone, a small connector (referred to as an abutment) is placed on the implant just above the gumline. In some cases, the abutment can be placed at the same time as the implant.
Attaching the Custom Made Crown
After your gums heal, impressions of your mouth and remaining teeth will be made in order to create your custom fitted crown. Although the replacement won’t decay, it’s important to keep up with your preventive and routine care, including checkups and cleanings.
Dental Implant Success Rates
Dental implants are among the most successful procedures in dentistry. As with any procedure, there is no guarantee that an implant procedure will be successful, but numerous studies demonstrate that implants are 95% to 98% successful for periods of 40 to 50 years. The success rates depends on various conditions such as:
- The general health of the patient
- The quality and quantity of available bone
- The number of teeth replaced
- The type of replacement teeth. *
Our Gilbert dentist office will evaluate your needs during an initial consultation and review the available options with you.
Contact Cobblestone Dental Care
For more information on getting implants, or to schedule a consultation to learn more about this procedure, contact Cobblestone Dental Care today.
*provided by the Institute for Dental Implant Awareness