A dental implant is the next best thing to your real tooth.
Nothing replaces your natural teeth, but dental implants can come close. If your tooth and roots have been damaged and are not a candidate for endodontic treatment, we may recommend a single tooth implant for treatment. Implants have been used for many years. They are man-made “anchors” that look like screws and are made of titanium and other materials that are compatible with the human body. The single tooth implant is placed by surgery in the upper or lower jaw, where it replaces your missing tooth’s root(s).
When both the tooth and root are damaged, the best permanent replacement is a dental implant in conjunction with a ceramic crown. This solution both looks and functions just like a natural tooth. Benefits are:
- Retains your natural face shape, and smile
- Protects your healthy teeth
- Prevents jawbone loss
- Excellent esthetic result
- Life long, stable solution
The way implants are placed depends on the patient, the type of implant, and the tooth being replaced. We will determine the appropriate treatment plan for your individual case. Most implants involve two or three basic steps:
- Placement of the Implant.
- We surgically place the implant into the jawbone. There may be some swelling and/or tenderness after the surgery, so pain medication is usually prescribed to ease the discomfort. We may recommend a diet of soft foods during the healing process.
- The Healing Process.
- What makes an implant so strong is that the bone actually grows around it and holds it in place. This process is called osseointegration (OSS-e-o-in-te-GRAY-shun), meaning “combines with the bone.” The healing and osseointegration time will depend on your individual case. Once the healing process is complete, the permanent replacement tooth can be attached to the implant.
- Replacing your missing tooth.
- For a single tooth implant, your dentist custom-makes a new tooth for you, called a dental crown. It is based on a size, shape, color and fit that will blend with your other teeth. Once completed, the man-made tooth is attached to the implant posts.
What Can I Expect After Receiving a Dental Implant?
Your natural teeth require good oral hygiene to keep them clean and healthy, which includes daily brushing and flossing, as well as regular dental check-ups. Dental implants are like your own teeth and will need the same attention and care as your normal teeth.