Permanent Replacements for Missing Teeth
The health of your teeth is about far more than a beautiful smile. A missing tooth can not only affect your ability to eat and speak normally, it can cause your remaining teeth and supporting bone structures to deteriorate, as well.
Retain Your Youthful Appearance
There’s no need to let your appearance or health deteriorate. With dental implants, you can restore your smile, your ability to eat and speak, and prevent the bone loss that results in the sunken in look associated with a toothless grin.
Why Select Dental Implants?
A dental implant can be placed for a single missing tooth or an entire mouthful of teeth. Because the implants are fused to your natural bone structure, they are stable, allowing you to eat your favorite foods. They are also permanent, which means you care for them in the same way that you care for your natural teeth; no overnight soaking required. Finally, dental implants look natural; no one will ever guess that they’re not the teeth you were born with.
The Implant Placement Procedure
Dental implant placement varies according to each patient. Gum health, bone mass, and patient lifestyle are all considered when developing a treatment plan. With few exceptions, the implant placement procedure involves the following:
- A local anesthetic will be administered to numb the area where the implant will be placed. To add to your comfort, you may also choose nitrous oxide or IV sedation.
- Once you are comfortable, the surgeon will use special instruments to insert a titanium implant into the jaw bone.
- Healing time depends on the quality and quantity of bone mass, as well as gum health. Once the bone and gum tissue have healed, you will receive your permanent crown.
Do I Have Enough Bone To Support Implants?
When you are missing a tooth, the jaw bone that once held the tooth roots in place may thin. In this case, you may require a bone graft prior to implant placement. Bone grafting reinforces the jaw structure, eventually preparing it to hold and stabilize the implant.
The longer the cavity that was once occupied by the roots of your tooth goes unfilled, the greater the chances the bone structure will weaken. For this reason, we recommend seeking dental implant treatment sooner rather than later.
Your Temporary Post-Placement Options
Your permanent prosthesis will usually be placed within one to six months. As your implants heal, however, you will have many options that allow you to resume your routine until your smile can be permanently restored:
- A temporary tooth or bridge can be provided.
- Your present dentures can be modified or a new denture can be made until you are healed enough for your prosthesis.
These options differ from patient to patient and are based on the complexity of the procedure and immediate needs of each patient.
Implant Supported Overdenture
Traditional dentures are not secured and come with inherent limitations; they can be painful, inconvenient, and limit the foods you enjoy. With implant supported dentures however, you can enjoy an increase in stability and comfort with a decrease in cost and time investment by securing your dental bridge with dental implants. The specific advantages include:
- Implant supported overdentures require fewer implants, which lowers the cost of treatment.
- Bone grafting is often unnecessary, as the implants used to secure the overdenture can be placed at an angle that required less bone mass.
- Your replacement arch can be attached to your implants immediately after they are placed, which means faster treatment and healing time.
Does Teeth-In-An-Hour™ Sound Too Good To Be True? They’re NOT!
Developed by Nobel Biocare, Teeth-In-An-Hour merges the knowledge and experience of the oral surgeon, periodontist and restorative dentist to provide patients with fully functioning implant-anchored teeth in about an hour. The process begins with a CAT scan of the patient’s jaw bone; this scan is used to generate a 3D model that helps your restoration team plan safe and precise implant placement well before the surgery. Best of all, the prosthetic tooth or teeth can be created prior to surgery, which means it can be placed during the procedures. Many patients can resume their normal activities within a day or two after surgery.
The Long-Lasting Solution to Missing Teeth
Once your prosthesis is placed, your dental implant will last for years if cared for properly. One of the benefits of implants is that they are cared for much like natural teeth. Brushing after every meal, flossing daily, and making regular visits to your dentist will ensure that you enjoy your new smile for decades. If any injury or regular “wear and tear” affect your implants, adjustments can be made to restore the look, stability, and functionality of your teeth.
Quality-of-Life That Can’t Be Beat
Dental implants are an investment in your quality of life. No other restoration option looks more like or functions like a natural tooth. With dental implants, you can eat healthy, fresh foods, you can speak without the clicking sounds associated with dentures, and you can smile without worry. No one will know your teeth aren’t the ones you were born with unless you tell them.
While other tooth replacement methods may be more affordable, none are as long-lasting or secure as dental implants; dentures and bridges may be less expensive up front, but because they need to be repaired and replaced every five to ten years, they may end up being more expensive in the long run. Because each patient has different needs, the cost of dental implants is not easy to pin down. When assessing the cost of the procedure, consider the following:
- How many professionals will be involved in your treatment? The training and expertise required for a beautiful dental restoration usually require the services of an oral surgeon or periodontist and a restorative dentist.
- How many office visits will be required? Will you need to have teeth extracted before implants can be placed? Will you require a bone graft? Will you need to restore your gums to health before treatment?
- Are you replacing a single tooth or multiple teeth? While a single-tooth restoration may be (comparatively) simple, multiple restorations may require more care and additional follow-up appointments.
- What will your pre and post-operative needs be? Will you need antibiotics? Will nitrous oxide be sufficient or will you need IV sedation to increase your comfort?
Your dental insurance carrier may be able to cover a portion of the cost of implants. There are also health care credit companies that offer low-interest loans for dental procedures. Dental implants are an investment in so much more than your smile – they are an investment in your health, lifestyle, and self-esteem.