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Dental Implants

Dental implants are a great way to replace missing teeth and also provide a fixed solution to having removable partial or complete dentures.  Implants provide excellent support and stability for these dental appliances.

Dental implants are artificial roots and teeth (usually titanium) that are surgically placed into the upper or lower jaw bone by a dentist or Periodontist - a specialist of the gums and supporting bone.  The teeth attached to implants are very natural looking and often enhance or restore a patient’s smile!

Dental implants are strong and durable and will last many years.  On occasion, they will have to be re-tightened or replaced due to normal wear. If you ever feel like your implant or implant crown might be loose, call your dental office immediately.

Reasons for dental implants:

  • Replace one or more missing teeth without affecting adjacent teeth.
  • Resolve joint pain or bite problems caused by teeth shifting into missing tooth space.
  • Restore a patient’s confident smile.
  • Restore chewing, speech, and digestion.
  • Restore or enhance facial tissues.
  • Support a bridge or denture, making it more secure and comfortable.

What does getting dental implants involve?

The process of getting implants requires a number of visits over several months.

X-rays (individual and/or 3D imaging) and impressions (molds and/or digital) are taken of the jaw and teeth to determine bone, gum tissue, and spacing available for an implant. A surgery guide is usually made a week or so in advance for the day of surgery. It is not always needed or used. The guide is made from a 3D digital impression scan that was taken with an i-Tero machine. On the day of surgery, be sure to hydrate and eat a well-balanced meal beforehand. Your blood might be drawn (PRP/PRF) that will benefit the healing process. While the area is numb, the implant will be surgically placed into the bone and allowed to heal and integrate itself for up to four-six months.  Depending on the type of implant, a second surgery may be required in order to place the “post” that will hold the artificial tooth in place.  With other implants the post and anchor are already attached and placed at the same time.

After 4-6 months of healing, a healing cap may be placed to help shape the gums. About one to two weeks later, a final impression will be taken as well as picking out the shade for the final crown to match other teeth. The healing cap (if placed) will be put back on. When the final crown comes in, it is securely attached to the implant, providing excellent stability and comfort to the patient.

You will receive care instructions when your treatment is completed.  Good oral hygiene and eating habits, alongside regular dental visits, will aid in the life of your new implant.

If you have questions about dental implants or would like to schedule a consultation, please contact our office.