Dental Implants – A New Bridge for Oral Sustainability?
For years, crowns, bridges and dentures were our only options when replacing missing teeth. With dental implant technology, you can achieve a smile that looks and feels very natural. Dental Implants fuse to the jawbone and serve as a base for individual replacement teeth or bridges. They are surgically placed below the gums over a series of visits with your dentist. Implants offer great stability because they fuse to the bone within your mouth. This process helps your replacement teeth feel more natural and some people also find the implants more comfortable than traditional substitutes.
In order to be a candidate for dental implants, you need to have healthy gums and adequate bone. Only your dentist will be able to determine whether you are a good candidate for dental implants.
Dental implants have really come a long way, and can provide artificial teeth that look natural and function well. They can also be used to connect to full or partial dentures. Because of the fact that implants require surgery, patients must be in good health. They also must have adequate bone to support the implant and be committed to rigorous oral hygiene and regular dental visits. In short – They are not for everybody.
The process is pretty simple in theory, albeit requires great patience and experience by the dental professional. Surgery is performed to place the anchor. This procedure can take several hours. There is a possibility that patients may need up to six months for the bone to grow around the anchor and firmly hold it in place. Some implants require a follow-up surgery, in which a post is attached to connect the anchor to the replacement teeth. With many other implants, the anchor and post are already attached and are then placed at the same time. After the gums have had ample time to heal, the artificial teeth are made and fitted to the post portion of the anchor. This step can take one to two months to complete because several fittings may be required.
Implant surgery can be done either in a dental office or in a hospital, depending upon several factors. Usually pain medications are prescribed, and when necessary, antibiotics. A local or general anesthetic may be used as well. Visit your dentist for more information.