Do you struggle with the discomfort and inconvenience of missing or severely damaged teeth? Aside from clearly affecting how you look and feel about yourself, this common issue greatly impacts how you talk, your ability to eat, and your general oral health. Thankfully, advancements in restorative dentistry now offer a state-of-the-art solution—dental implants.
But how is a tooth implant performed?
Read on to learn how a dental implant is done and how this innovative procedure can replace damaged or lost teeth, restoring your smile’s function and aesthetics.
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are artificial tooth roots, typically constructed from a titanium screw, that are inserted into the jawbone. These implants take the place of natural tooth roots and support the placement of an artificial tooth or crown. They are used to replace lost, damaged, or decayed teeth, providing a permanent solution that imitates the structure and function of a natural tooth.
Dental implants are classified as:
- Endosteal Implant. The most common type is made from titanium. It’s surgically inserted into the jawbone, functioning as an artificial root, providing strong and sturdy support for the replacement tooth.
- Subperiosteal Implant. A beneficial option for patients with insufficient bone mass. It is a metal frame placed below the gum tissue but resting on or above the jawbone. Artificial teeth are then attached to the posts that protrude from the gums.
What Are the Benefits of Dental Implants?
Dental implants closely resemble real teeth in terms of size, shape, and color, offering a natural-looking solution for tooth loss. They can help create a beautiful replacement tooth, matching the rest of the teeth and contributing to a bright smile.
As they are anchored into the jawbone like natural tooth roots, dental implants provide stable support for artificial teeth. This stability ensures that the prosthetic teeth won’t slip or shift in your mouth, making it easier to eat and speak.
Dental implants help keep the jawbone healthy by giving it the needed stimulation to prevent it from wearing down or getting damaged, which could happen if a tooth falls out.
Oral Health Protection
Unlike dental bridges, dental implants do not require reducing other teeth. More of your natural teeth are left intact, improving oral hygiene and long-term oral health.
Durability and Longevity
With proper care and routine dental check-ups, dental implants can last a lifetime, making them a cost-effective solution in the long run.
As a tooth implant becomes part of you, it removes the discomfort often associated with removable dentures.
Poorly fitted dentures can cause speech problems by slipping in the mouth. Dental implants stay firmly in place, allowing you to speak without worrying about your teeth loosening or causing a lisp.
What to Expect During a Dental Implant Procedure
Step 1: Initial Consultation and Comprehensive Examination
What is the procedure for a tooth implant? The dental implant process starts with an initial consultation, during which the dental professional assesses the patient’s dental and health history as well as the overall oral health to determine if you are a suitable candidate for a one tooth replacement. This may involve X-ray procedures to examine the current jawbone’s health and structure thoroughly.
Factors like chronic diseases, oral hygiene habits, and specific health conditions are considered to ensure the suitability of the procedure.
Step 2: Development of a Comprehensive Treatment Plan
Based on the comprehensive examination, an appropriate treatment plan is drafted. This dental plan details the suitable implant type, the need for additional bone (if any), potential risks, cost, and the overall treatment timeline.
Step 3: Implant Placement Procedure
If necessary, the surgical procedure begins with tooth extraction of the damaged tooth. In cases of inadequate bone support, bone grafting may be required, using either natural or artificial bone to improve density and volume. Once adequate bone height is assured, the dental implant surgery proceeds.
Depending on the patient’s unique needs and bone structure, an endosteal implant or a subperiosteal implant is surgically embedded into the jawbone. This is performed as an outpatient procedure under sedative medications for patient comfort.
Step 4: Healing Phase and Implant Integration
After the initial implant placement, a healing phase follows. This period of healing time is important as it allows the implant to fuse with the bone. It is closely monitored by the dental provider to ensure successful implant integration and to prevent the risk of implant failure.
Step 5: Abutment Placement and Prosthetic Tooth Attachment
Once the implant has successfully healed and settled, an abutment is placed. The abutment serves as a bridge between the implant and the artificial tooth. A beautiful replacement tooth, typically a dental crown, is then attached to the abutment, providing the patient with a brand-new, beautiful smile.
Step 6: Follow-Up Care and Routine Checkups
Following the dental implant placement, the patient is advised on proper care of the implants, including strict dental hygiene habits, regular dental check-ups, and avoiding certain activities that might lead to implant damage or loosening. This follow-up care is essential to guarantee the long-term success of the dental implant procedure.
Dental Implant: What to Expect After the Surgery
After the surgery, discomfort such as swelling of the gum and face, minor bleeding, and pain at the implant site may be experienced. Pain relief medication and antibiotics may be prescribed. A diet of soft, cold foods is recommended during the first few days after surgery. During the healing time, meticulous oral hygiene should be maintained to ensure successful implant integration and to prevent complications.
But how long does it take? The entire process, including healing, can take several months, typically between three to six months. However, each patient is unique, and the timeline can vary depending on overall health, the need for bone grafts or tooth extraction, and the specific location of the implant.
Are There Any Possible Risks of Dental Implants?
Like any surgical procedure, dental implants come with potential risks. These can include:
- Infection at the implant site
- Nerve damage causing pain or numbness
- Injury to nearby structures
- Sinus problems
However, these risks are relatively rare, especially when a qualified and experienced dental professional performs the procedure.
Transform Your Smile With Alman & Katz Advanced Cosmetic & Family Dentistry
It’s time to give yourself the perfect smile you’ve always dreamed of with Alman & Katz Advanced Cosmetic & Family Dentistry in Boca Raton, FL. Our team of experienced dental professionals is passionately committed to making your dental health and confidence smile our top priority.
We offer state-of-the-art services in a warm, friendly environment. Whether it’s a routine check-up, a complex dental procedure, or a complete smile makeover you’re after—we’re here to make your dental dreams come true.
Don’t wait another day to have the smile you deserve. Contact us now to schedule your consultation.