What are dental Implants?
Dental implants are surgically placed, dental restorations that take the place of removable tooth replacement options like full and partial dentures. Dental implants can replace a single tooth with a permanent crown, multiple consecutive missing teeth with a dental bridge, and ever a full arch of teeth.
The Parts of Dental Implants
Dental implants are made up of three distinct parts – the titanium implant post, the implant abutment, and the implant restoration.
Having dental implants placed requires several trips to our office to complete. It starts with the planning phase, where we take impressions of your mouth to help in the treatment planning phase. We will also take some X-rays to aid us in treatment planning. If during the treatment planning phase we discover that you lack sufficient bones mass in the jaw to support dental implants, or if we find other conditions that make your mouth less suitable to dental implants, we will build treatment of such conditions into the treatment plan.
The first part of the dental implant that is place is the titanium implant post. Implant posts are usually made of titanium because it is a long-lasting and strong material that is readily accepted by the human body because it is biocompatible. We will make an incision in your gum line to access the bone where the implant will be placed. The bone will be prepared to accept the implant post with the help of a special dental drill. The implant post will be placed in your jaw bone, and the gums will be sutured shut around the implant post. This will be repeated for as many dental implant posts that you will be receiving. We will allow several months of recovery time between dental implant placement and the final implant restoration placement, to ensure that the jaw bone properly mends around the dental implant posts.
As you heal from the surgery, we will monitor your progress with the help of X-ray technology to determine when we can place the final dental implant restoration. If we are replacing a single tooth, a crown will be used, if we are replacing all of your teeth, an implant supported denture will be used. These are both permanent dental restorations that will give you back the ability to eat and speak as you did with your natural teeth. We will screw the implant abutment into the implant post and secure it permanently with a special dental adhesive. The abutment simply provides plenty of surface area to allow us to attach the implant restoration to the implant post.
Once the restoration has been placed, we will check your bite and make sure that you feel comfortable when closing your mouth.
Posterior Screw-Retained Implant
Anterior Screw-Retained Implant
Bridge Versus an Implant