A Better Way to Replace Teeth
Why are dental implants important?
Dental implants are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel, and function like natural teeth. The person who has replaced lost teeth with implants regains the ability to eat virtually anything and smile with confidence, knowing that teeth appear natural and that facial contours will be preserved.
What is a dental implant?
The implants themselves are tiny titanium posts that are surgically placed into the jawbone where teeth are missing. These titanium posts act as tooth root substitutes. The bone bonds (fuses) with the titanium, a process called Osseointegration, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. Small components which protrude through the gums are subsequently attached to the implant. The crown is connected to these components, called abutments. Implants also help preserve facial structure, preventing bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are missing.
Time is of the Essence
You may be surprised to hear that your jawbone is a lot like a muscle, in that it must be stimulated regularly in order to maintain its volume. Therefore, when a tooth is lost, the jawbone begins to deteriorate almost immediately. In fact, studies show that within a year of tooth loss, there is a 25% decrease in bone width. Thankfully, dental implants can take the place of natural teeth to provide the stimulus needed by the jaw. If implants are placed after extraction they in turn provide the necessary stimulation to prevent atrophy.
How much do dental implants cost?
In many cases dental implants are a better choice for tooth replacement then traditional dentistry. Contrary to popular belief the cost difference between implants and traditional dentistry is less then you think. In addition, the longevity of implants greatly out weighs whatever difference in cost there may be. All treatment options and financial responsibilities will be reviewed with you by your doctor, our office and your restorative dentist prior to beginning your treatment.
Dental Implants Presentation
To provide you with a better understanding of dental implants, we have provided the following multimedia presentation. Many common questions pertaining to dental implants are discussed.
Dental Implants: The Process
- Comprehensive Examination and Treatment Plan: During the initial phase of the dental implant process, imaging is gathered along with your medical and dental histories to give us a clear picture of your current health. We will then explore your treatment options with you and your dentist to formulate a plan individually tailored for your specific needs and concerns.
- Extraction: The next step is to have the tooth in question extracted. In some cases, we may be able to place the implant at the time of extraction. In others, bone grafting will be required prior to implant placement (see next step).
- Bone Grafting: It is fairly common to preserve the quantity of bone in the extraction site. Bone grafting done at the time of extraction is typically followed by several months of healing before the implant can be placed. In some compromised cases however additional bone grafting may be required in order to place an implant.
- Dental Implant Surgery: During the implant procedure itself, a titanium post is inserted into your jawbone. You will be anesthetized for comfort during the surgery, which takes about 15-20 minutes per implant.
- Osseointegration: After placing the implant we typically wait 3-4 months for the implant to undergo Osseointegration (fuse to the bone).
- Final Restoration: After osseointegration is complete, an abutment is placed on the implant to connect with the final crown restoration. Typically, the abutment and the final restoration is done by your restorative dentist.
*For more information, please visit our dental implant FAQs page*
At Metropolitan Craniofacial Center, P.A. we are proud to offer a safe, comfortable and affordable dental implant experience to our patients with the help of cutting-edge technology and utilization of the latest techniques. Call us to get started on your journey – we are here with the support, guidance, experience and expertise you deserve.