When you are missing one or more teeth, getting tooth implants is a great, and permanent, solution. When you decide that you want implants, it is the oral surgeon who performs the procedure. There are several different types of implants for different types of dental solutions. Your oral surgeon will talk to you about your specific tooth-replacement needs and how that can be best accomplished.
A Single-Tooth Implant
If you need to replace a single tooth, a single implant will do the job beautifully. The first stage of the procedure is removing the old tooth and assessing the amount of jawbone you have. If you need more to provide a further anchor for an implant, you can receive a bone graft. After this procedure, you have a few months to heal until the process begins again. Once healed from the extraction and/or bone graft, you then have the oral surgeon implant a titanium screw into the bone. This once again must heal for a few months before you can continue.
The last stage is for the crown to be attached to the implant structure. This may be done by a dentist. With a completed tooth implant, you have an artificial root attached to the bone that is holding your crown in place. No one should be able to tell that your tooth is an implant. It is specially made to go well with the rest of your teeth.
A Bridge Implant
If you need a bridge to replace a missing tooth, this can be done in a similar way. The bridge consists of one tooth that is implanted in the center and two teeth on either side that are attached to the implanted tooth. These are attached in order to provide further support for the implanted tooth. This can also be done for more than one tooth that is missing. We perform this procedure and have seen how helpful it can be and how well it keeps the bone from being in worse condition.
If you have one or two teeth missing, the root of a tooth is no longer keeping the bone healthy. When this happens, the bone actually starts to degrade. Many people avoid implants thinking that if no one can see the missing tooth, it doesn’t matter. However, there are many benefits that come with an implant, even if it’s away from the front of your mouth.
A bridge supported by an implant can also keep your teeth from shifting position and allow you to speak and eat better. With no gaps in your teeth, the pressure when you chew will be distributed evenly. It can help your smile to look better and boost your self-confidence. It can also help to save your jawbone’s health. The implant bridges look just like your natural teeth in shape and color.
Oral surgeons also install denture implants. If you are missing several teeth, or all of them, you might opt to get dentures. Traditional dentures are fitted over the gums each day and cleaned at night. However, there are dentures that are permanently fixed so that there is no sliding around. Dentures can be permanently affixed by using implants to hold them in place.
There are two main types of these dentures- overdentures and fixed dentures. Both of these main types look natural and are highly effective. Both of these types require the use of implants to keep them precisely in place. These implants are titanium screws that are affixed to the bone. This is extremely strong and makes them highly supportive of the dentures you need.
Overdentures can be easily removed for cleaning. However, fixed dentures have been attached to the implants permanently and cannot be removed. These are treated just like real teeth. You can brush them, floss them, etc. With traditional dentures, the new teeth can slide around and become uncomfortable. But with implant dentures, they are held securely in place. Dentures retained by implants work so well because they add some root structure to the bone. Without that structure, as with traditional dentures, the bone can begin to erode and change the look of your face. To keep the bone intact and healthy, implants hold onto the bone and evenly distribute pressure from eating. This keeps both your bones and gums healthier.
The first step is a consultation with the oral surgeon. During this, you will have a full mouth exam as well as getting X-rays done to make sure you are a candidate for implants. At a later appointment, the implants are placed in the bone. After that heals, your dentures are then installed.
Patients find their denture implants to be highly functional, very comfortable and durable enough to last a long time. They also allow for more comfortable eating and talking.
If you have any teeth missing, or you need a surgical extraction, make an appointment with DFW Oral Surgeons for your consultation. Getting those teeth replaced as soon as possible will minimize any problems that stem from missing teeth.