Gavin Luis Maxillofacial Institute

Dental Implants

Technically, a dental implant is an artificial tooth root that’s placed into your jaw to hold a prosthetic tooth or bridge. However, when most people use the term “dental implants,” they’re talking about the combination of the implant (the artificial tooth root) and the prosthetic tooth. Dental implants may be an option for people who have lost one or more teeth due to periodontal disease, an injury, or some other reason and who prefer not to wear dentures.

Gavin Luis Maxillofacial Institute

Dental implant surgery

Its replaces the root area of the missing tooth with metal, screw-like posts in which the artificial tooth can be implemented. The artificial teeth look and act just like real ones, so this type of surgery can be a great alternative to wearing dentures or having ill-fitting bridgework done.

Dental implant surgery may be performed in several steps depending upon the kind of implant you’re getting and the health of your jawbone. The process requires the jawbone to heal tightly around the dental implant area, (called osseointegration) effectively assimilating it into the gumline as if it were a natural tooth. The implants are surgically placed within the jawbone and serve as the “root” of the artificial tooth being implemented. Titanium is often used for this procedure because it fuses the implant with the jawbone, remains firmly in place, and won’t decay like some kinds of bridgework.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

A dental implant is a small titanium screw that serves as the replacement for the root portion of a missing natural tooth. Dental implants can be placed in either the upper or lower jaws. Due to the biocompatible properties of titanium, a dental implant fuses with the bone and becomes a good anchor for the replacement tooth. Dental implants are solutions for replacing single or multiple missing teeth.

Same-day implants can usually be done in a single procedure, ranging from 30 minutes to 3 hours, depending on the number of implanted teeth

There are a number of reasons why you should consider a dental implant:

Without the root structure of a natural tooth present, the jawbone can shrink, making your face look older than it is. Because dental implants prevent the bone resorption that occurs when teeth are missing, the natural appearance of the smile is preserved.

With dental implant treatment, there is no compromise to adjacent teeth; they are not cut down to place a bridge, or loosened by the hooks on removable partial dentures. Dentures and partials have the added disadvantage of accelerating the bone resorption process, which causes the appearance of premature aging.

With dental implants, there are no loose parts to worry about losing. The dental implant is stable and comfortable. No adjustment is needed after placement. In most cases, it will serve its owner for life.

Nearly anyone who is missing one or more teeth due to injury, disease or tooth decay may be a candidate for dental implants. There are a few medical conditions that can undermine the success of implant treatment, such as uncontrolled diabetes. However there are very few conditions that would keep someone from having implant treatment altogether.

Quality and quantity of available bone for implant placement is more often a factor in qualifying for dental implants than medical conditions. However, even people who have lost a significant amount of bone can qualify for dental implant treatment with additional procedures to add bone or create new bone. Advances in this type of treatment have made it possible for many people who would not previously have been considered candidates for dental implants to be successfully treated. 

Bone preservation and improved appearance: When you lose the entire tooth – crown and root – shrinkage of the jawbone may cause your face to look older. Dental implants can stop this process. Other treatment options can replace the crown of the tooth above the gumline; however none of these methods of tooth replacement preserve bone. And, in fact, dentures and partial dentures actually accelerate the bone resorption process.

Preserve natural teeth: With traditional dental bridges, teeth adjacent to missing teeth are normally ground down to be used as anchors for a dental bridge. The edges where the crowns supporting the bridge meet the tooth structure are more susceptible to decay than a tooth that has not been restored. Combine this with increased difficulty in cleaning the teeth under the bridge, due to an inability to floss without special threading tools, and the reason for the limited lifespan of dental bridges becomes more obvious. Dental implants often eliminate the need to modify healthy teeth.

Permanent solution: For many patients, dentistry is a bit of a downward spiral. Over the years small fillings become larger ones, leading to the need for crowns and possibly root canals. This happens due to some patients’ inability to control cavities. In fact, larger and larger dental restorations and root canals weaken a tooth and make it more susceptible to future problems. Because dental implants do not decay, they can become an ideal solution for tooth replacement for patients with a high incidence of cavities. In these cases, they are a better option than a bridge, even when the adjacent teeth have previous restorations. Though there are no guarantees that an implant will last for the life of a patient, multiple studies show that dental implants have a higher rate of survival long-term than any other restorative treatment. They certainly have the greatest probability of serving its owner for life.

Dental Implants

Book An Appointment

There are many reasons to have dental implants: you have one or more missing teeth; your jawbone is strong enough to have the procedure; you’re unable (or unwilling) to wear dentures; or you have a speech impediment that could be improved by adding one or more dental implants to your gumline.

Patient Testimonial