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What is a dental implant?
Dental implant refers to an artificial tooth root, made up of titanium that is placed into your jaw to hold a replacement bridge or tooth. An implant can be placed in either the lower or upper jaw. Due to the titanium’s biocompatible properties, the bone of the jaw osseointegrates with a dental implant, and thus it becomes an excellent anchor for the replacement tooth. Dental implants are used for replacing both single and multiple missing teeth.
Why do I need dental implants?
There are several reasons for you to consider a dental implant:
When the root structure of a natural tooth is missing, there is a possibility for your jawbone to shrink. Your face starts to look older than it really is due to this shrinkage.
You don’t have to worry about losing any of the parts, since there are no loose parts in an implant. The dental implants are very comfortable and stable. No adjustment would be required after placement and normally, they stay for a lifetime.
Have dental implants been successful?
Dental implants have been used for over three decades and more than a million patients have been treated. As per the statistics, there is a success rate of nearly 95% for individual dental implants. The success rate is even higher for the bridges these implants support.
* Results based on dental bridges and dental implants remaining and in function over a 5-year period.
Who places the dental implants?
Our dental practice specializes in dental implants and our Oral Surgeon is licensed to place the dental implants.
How much do dental implants cost?
The fees for teeth replacement with dental implants are determined on the basis of various factors, such as how many teeth need replacement and how many dental implants would be required to support the replacement teeth. In some cases, a few additional procedures are also required prior to placing dental implants for ensuring implants’ long-term health.
To get an idea on approximate cost, you will need a thorough examination after which the dentist will be in a position to recommend the treatment most suitable for you.
Who is a Right Candidate?
Someone who has one or more of his/her teeth missing due to disease, tooth decay or injury would be a candidate for dental implants. The amount of available bone and overall medical condition will be considered.
Is old age a problem?
We find that many older patients wonder if they can enjoy the benefits of dental implants; however, it is health and not age which would be the determining factor. If you are healthy enough to get a tooth extracted, you are most probably healthy enough to receive a dental implant. Some chronic diseases can be problematic with a dental implant treatment. Your dentist will carefully evaluate your health and dental history to determine if you are a candidate for dental implant or not.
What are the advantages that a dental implant has over dentures or a dental bridge?
When you have lost your entire tooth, including your root and crown, your jawbone shrinks and makes your face look much older than it really is. With dental implants, you won’t have this problem. A traditional dental bridge and denture will not be able to help you with this.
Preserve natural teeth: When you use traditional dental bridges, the teeth which are adjacent to missing teeth, are normally ground down to be used as anchors for a dental bridge. With dental implants you don’t have to compromise your healthy teeth.
Permanent solution: You don’t have to worry about losing any loose parts with dental implants, as there are none. They are also very comfortable and stable. No adjustment would be required after placement and normally, they stay for a lifetime.
How are dental implants going to affect my life?
Replacement teeth which are supported by dental implants feel, function and look very much like natural teeth. This means that you would be free to drink and eat whatever you want. But most importantly, they would improve your quality of life in a very real way. People who feel embarrassed because of the problems with their teeth are often deeply moved by how these new permanent teeth help them with their self-esteem.
Will these new teeth look like The natural teeth?
The dental implants are usually used in combination with modern restorative dentistry. The result is teeth which look, function and feel very much like your natural teeth. It is difficult to distinguish them from natural teeth.
Will chewing be possible with the same pressure and force that I used to do with my natural teeth?
Yes. After a short adaptation period, you should be able to chew almost as well as you did with your natural teeth.
How much time does it require to place a dental implant?
These days, state-of-the-art guided surgical techniques are suitable to place dental implants using keyhole surgery, in only a single session. This latest method has appreciably simplified the procedure, both for dentists and patients. The key advantage of this guided surgical technique is that it requires only minimal amount of soft tissue manipulation, due to keyhole surgery. The discomfort and healing time normally associated with conventional dental implant surgical methods, is considerably reduced.
The traditional process takes anywhere from 3 – 6 months. First, the dental implants are placed by the dentist, which are then left for 3-6 months for healing and integrating with your jawbone. During this healing and integrating period, you may be given a temporary prosthesis until a permanent crown can be put in place.
The procedure which is chosen will depend on a number of factors, for example, your dental health, the number of teeth which are involved and which teeth have to be replaced. These factors will also be the determining factor for the number of times you will need to visit your dentist through the treatment period.
Is the treatment painful?
Some amount of discomfort is associated with any kind of surgery. A single implant would cause less discomfort than placing two or more. The patient is administered anesthesia or sedation to help reduce any discomfort that may be caused during the process of dental implant. Most patients report being far more comfortable following the process than they anticipated. You will be prescribed medications by your doctor to alleviate any pain or discomfort that you may feel.
How am I going to feel after the treatment?
It is not unusual to have some swelling or bruising in your soft tissues and gums following the treatment. However, any discomfort that you may feel can be treated by any ordinary painkiller. You can expect to be able to work the very next day.
How should I care for my dental implants?
It is extremely important that you take proper care of your new teeth and get them checked regularly, just like you would do for your natural teeth. Brush and floss them as is recommended by your dentist. See your dentist a minimum of every six months.
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You can visit us, at Cornerstone Dental, for a free cosmetic dental exam to find out how we can help you look younger by years and feel good about your smile.