A dental implant is an artificial tooth root placed in to your jaw to hold a replacement crown or bridge in place. The treatment can be more conservative than traditional bridge work, since implants do not rely on neighboring teeth for support. Dental implants restorations are so natural looking and feeling that you may forget you ever lost a tooth. Dental implants can be the best solution to the problem of missing teeth. Since dental implants integrate into the structure of your bone, they can prevent the bone loss and gum recession. No one will ever know that you have a replacement tooth.
How will the implants be placed?
First, implants, which look like screws or cylinders, are placed into your jaw. Over the next two to three months, the implants and the bone are allowed to bond together to form anchors. During this, time, a temporary teeth replacement option can be worn over the implant sites. Often, a second step of the procedure is necessary to uncover the implants and attach extensions. The se small metal posts, called abutments, complete the foundation on which your new teeth will be placed. Your gums will be allowed to heal for a couple of weeks following this procedure.
There are some implant systems (one stage) that do not require this second step. These systems use an implant which already has the extension piece attached. Your periodontist will advise you on which system is best for you. Finally, replacement teeth, or bridges, will be created for you by your dentist and attached to the abutments. After a short time, you will experience restored confidence in your smile and your ability to chew and speak.
Am I a candidate for dental implants?
The ideal candidate for a dental implant is in good general and oral health. Adequate bone in you jaw is needed to support the implant. The best candidates have healthy gum tissues that are free of periodontal disease. Smoking is detrimental to healing but is not an absolute contraindication. Dental implants are intimately connected with the gum tissues and underlying bone in the mouth. Your dentist can determine if you are a good candidate for this procedure. Implants can also be used for those who have lost all their teeth.