Dental Implants

Caring for you & your smile.

Dental implant surgery is a procedure that replaces tooth roots with metal, screwlike posts and replaces damaged or missing teeth with artificial teeth that look and function much like real ones. Dental implant surgery offers a great alternative to dentures or bridgework that doesn’t fit well and can offer an option when a lack of natural teeth roots does not allow building denture or bridgework tooth replacements.

The type of implant and the condition of your jawbone influence how the dental surgery is done. Dental implant surgery may involve several procedures. Implants are beneficial since it provides a solid support for your new teeth- a process that requires the bone to heal tightly around the implant. Because this bone healing requires time, the process can take many months.

Why are Implants Done?

Dental implants are surgically placed in your jawbone, where they act as the roots of missing teeth. The implants will not slip, make noise or cause any damage to the way fixed bridgework or dentures might, since the titanium in the implants fuses with your jawbone.

Why should you choose implants over bridge

Strength

When it comes to strength, implants win the competition against bridges. Fixed bridges are secured to neighboring teeth, while implants are fixed directly to the bone resting beneath the gums. Keeping aside the initial few months of placing an implant, there will be no restrictions on your eating habits since the implant acts like a natural tooth for the rest of your life. On the other hand, bridges may become loose or fall off entirely and dentists have to re-cement the bridge or replace it.

Appearance

A dental bridge is more visible. An implant appears and functions like a natural tooth.

Longevity

On an average, a bridge will not stay for more than a decade. Implants are a perfect option for those looking for a long-term solution. The materials used to create implants are meant to last a long time. With proper oral hygiene and maintenance, implants have close to 95-99% success rate.

Dental implant placement steps

  1. Damaged tooth removal
  2. Jawbone preparation (bone grafting), when needed
  3. Dental implant placement
  4. Bone growth and healing
  5. Healing Abutment placement
  6. Artificial tooth preparation
  7. Artificial tooth placement

When is bone grafting needed?

If your jawbone isn’t thick enough or is too soft, you will need bone grafting before you go ahead with the implant surgery. This is because the powerful chewing action of your mouth exerts great pressure on your bone, and if it can’t support the implant, the surgery would most likely fail. A bone graft can create a more solid base for the implant.

Options for bone graft materials that can be used to rebuild a jawbone include a natural bone graft, such as from another location in your body, or a synthetic bone graft, such as bone-substitute material that support new bone growth. Talk to your Implantologists about the option that will best suit you.

Transplanted bone may take several months to grow enough new bone to support a dental implant. In some cases, you might need only minor bone grafting, which can be done at the same time as the implant surgery. All of this depends on the condition of your jaw bone.

Dental implant placement

During the surgery to place the implant, your oral surgeon makes a cut to open your gum and expose the bone. The surgeon then drills holes into the bone where the dental implant metal post will be placed. The post serves as the tooth root and it is implanted deep into the bone.

At this point, you will still have a gap where your tooth is missing. A type of partial, temporary denture can be placed for appearance, if needed. You can remove this denture for cleaning and while you sleep.

Waiting for bone growth

With the metal implant post placed in your jawbone, osseointegration begins. During this process, the jawbone grows into and unites with the surface of the dental implant. This process, which can take several months, helps provide a solid base for your new artificial tooth just as roots do for your natural teeth.

Placement of the healing abutment

When osseointegration is complete, you may need additional surgery to place the abutment — the piece where the crown will eventually attach. This minor surgery is typically done with local anesthesia in an outpatient setting.

To place the healing abutment:

 your gum is reopened to expose the dental implant

The healing abutment is attached to the dental implant

The gum tissue is then closed around, but not over the healing abutment

Since the abutment juts past the gumline, it is visible when you open your mouth and it will be that way until your dentist completes the tooth prosthesis. Ideally, your gums must heal for about two weeks before the artificial tooth can be attached.

Placement of permanent Crown

After 2 weeks of placing the healing abutment, the dentist now focusses on making the permanent crown look exactly like your natural teeth. From the surface color, texture and anatomy, everything will be tuned to blend with the surrounding dentition.

Impressions of your mouth and remaining teeth are taken to make the crown so that a realistic-looking artificial tooth can be made. After 1-2 weeks the permanent crown which will be cemented or screwed to the Implant.

POST IMPLANTS CARE

  1. Good oral hygiene is important not just for your teeth and gums but also for overall wellbeing. Follow these tips to improve your oral health:
  2. Right after the implant surgery avoid disturbing the surgical site with your tongue. This includes not touching the area with your tongue, spitting, sucking or smoking. This can dislodge the blood clot form and delay healing.
  3. Brush twice a day daily to maintain good oral hygiene
  4. Choose a toothbrush with a small head and soft bristles
  5. Change your toothbrush after every two to three months.
  6. Brush gently and thoroughly. Too much force while brushing might cause abrasion
  7. Floss at least once a day to remove food struck between the teeth as it helps keep implants in good condition
  8. Rinse your mouth with mouthwash after meals to stay on top of your oral health
  9. Don’t eat sticky foods as implants attract more bacteria that your natural teeth since they are artificial in nature
  10. Visit the clinic regularly and try to achieve good oral hygiene to make your implants last for life.

Frequently Asked Questions in Dental Implants

Dental implants are not susceptible to dental disease such as decay like natural teeth, however the health of the gums is vital to maintaining lasting implant success. Oral hygiene care at home by the patient and regular professional cleanings and routine check-ups are essential to ensure dental implant sustainability.

Unlike dentures, dental implants are fixed solidly in the bone and look and function in a manner that is closest to natural teeth.

This answer varies from individual to individual. For a healthy individual with maintain good oral hygiene and look after their general health, dental implants report success rates above 95-98%

Almost anyone who is missing a single tooth, multiple teeth, or all teeth are good candidates for dental implants. Some patients suffering with core morbidities will be advised by the oral surgeon to run certain tests to qualify as a candidate for dental implants

They are one of the most reliable ways to replace missing teeth and are placed by only highly trained and certified professionals.

Implants have many advantages such as

  1. Improvement in your appearance and smile
  2. Helps improve your self-image and confidence
  3. Implants help prevent further bone loss
  4. Implants restore full chewing power
  5. Implants improve gum condition and prevents gum disease

For missing teeth, dental implants has become the go-to option for many. If your mouth is missing most or all of the teeth, then procedures like all-on-four and all-on-six can help get full mouth dental implants with 4 or 6 titanium posts on your jaw bone.

Anterior single implant placement with bone graft

Posterior implant placement with bone graft and GBR

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