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 are changing the way people live. With them, people are rediscovering the comfort and confidence to eat, speak, laugh and enjoy life. Did you know that 25 million American adults are totally without teeth, and more than half the adult population is missing at least one tooth? Whether you’ve lost all your teeth or just one, you’re probably a candidate for dental implants. Dental implant tooth replacement has helped thousands of people regain their self-confidence and live fuller, more active lives.
Dental implants are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel, and function like natural teeth. The person who has lost teeth regains the ability to eat virtually anything and can smile with confidence, knowing that teeth appear natural and that facial contours will be preserved.
Dr. Engel specializes in dental implants. This state-of-the-art technique for tooth replacement provides a solid foundation for crowns, bridges, or dentures. Dental implants improve jaw function and allow you to bite, chew, and smile with confidence. Dr. Engel understands that missing teeth can affect your attitude about yourself and life. Many people who are missing teeth feel embarrassed about their appearance. Others are self-conscious about speaking or eating because removable bridges slip or make noise.
Our staff is dedicated to providing the very best in dental implants and works closely with your family dentist to ensure that your new teeth look, feel, and function like natural teeth for years to come. Dental implants are changing the way people live. They are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel, and function like natural teeth. The person who has lost teeth regains the ability to eat virtually anything, knowing that teeth appear natural and that facial contours will be preserved. Patients with dental implants can smile with confidence.
Ask Dr. Engel how dental implants can improve the quality of your life.
What Are Dental Implants?
The implants themselves are tiny titanium posts that are surgically placed into the jawbone where teeth are missing. These metal anchors act as tooth root substitutes. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. A small post (abutment) is then attached to the implant. These posts provide stable anchors for artificial replacement teeth (crown, bridge, or denture).
Implants also help preserve facial structure, preventing bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are missing.
The Surgical Procedure
Implants are placed into the bone using very small incisions in the gum tissue. This procedure can be performed under local anesthesia (numbing) or intravenous (IV) sedation or general anesthesia. It is most interesting that the majority of our patients comment on how “easy” the implant surgery was for them. They generally find it easier than the previous tooth extraction. Most patients require only over-the-counter pain medications and describe mild discomfort for a couple of days. Of course, certain patients do undergo complex surgical procedures (e.g. multiple implants, bone grafting) that require additional convalescence time.
After implants are placed within your jawbone, the surrounding bone is alllowed to gradually bond with the implant. This takes three to six months following surgery. You should be able to wear a temporary prosthesis and eat a soft diet during this time. After the implant has bonded to the jawbone, the restorative phase may begin. The entire procedure usually takes four to eight months. Most patients experience minimal disruption in their daily life.
Dr. Engel performs outpatient implant surgery in his office with a variety of anesthetic options. Inpatient hospital implant surgery is for patients who have special medical or anesthetic needs or for those who need more extensive bone grafting.
Using the most recent advances in dental implant technology, Dr. Engel is able to place single stage implants. Many implants are placed using this single stage technique. These implants do not require a second procedure to uncover them, but do require a minimum of 3 months of healing time before artificial teeth are placed. Some implants are also placed using the more traditional 2-stage technique. These implants require a second minor procedure to uncover them. Advances in dental implant technology have made it possible, in select cases, to extract teeth and place implants at one visit. Then your restorative dentist can fabricate a temporary crown later that same day!
Implants are a team effort between an oral and maxillofacial surgeon and your restorative dentist. Dr. Engel will work closely with your restorative dentist before and after your surgery. After Dr. Engel performs the initial tooth extraction(s), implant placement, and bone grafting if necessary, the restorative dentist (your dentist) fits and makes the permanent prosthesis. Your dentist will also make any temporary prosthesis needed during the implant process.
What Types Of Prosthesis Are Available?
A single implant is placed to replace one missing tooth, then each prosthetic tooth (crown) attaches to its own implant. A partial prosthesis (fixed bridge) can replace multiple teeth and may require only two or three implants. A complete dental prosthesis can replace all the teeth in your upper or lower jaw and requires four to ten implants. The number of implants varies depending upon which type of complete prosthesis (removable or fixed) is recommended. A removable prosthesis (over denture) attaches to a bar or ball in socket attachments, whereas a fixed prosthesis is permanent and removable only by the dentist.
Why Dental Implants?
Dental implants can dramatically improve your quality of life. When you lose several teeth – whether it’s a new situation or something you have lived with for years – chances are you have never become fully accustomed to losing such a vital part of yourself. Function is greatly compromised when teeth are lost.
Dental implants are the closest functional and esthetic replacement for missing natural teeth. A traditional fixed bridge on natural teeth necessitates grinding off all the enamel on the adjacent teeth. Placement of an implant leaves the enamel of the adjacent teeth untouched. Implants are not subject to decay like natural teeth.
A Swedish scientist and orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Per-Ingvar Branemark, developed this concept for oral rehabilitation more than 35 years ago. With his pioneering research, Dr. Branemark opened the door to a lifetime of renewed comfort and self-confidence for millions of individuals facing the frustration and embarrassment of tooth loss.
Why Select Dental Implants Over More Traditional Types Of Restorations?
There are several reasons: Why sacrifice the structure of surrounding good teeth to bridge a space? A bridge is very destructive to the involved teeth. Although bridges are designed for excellent function and appearance, they may last on average only 8-10 years. Further, the initial costs as compared to an implant are very similar. An implant is the only option that can prevent your jaw bone from deteriorating. Removable teeth (partial or complete dentures) are often very uncomfortable and difficult to adjust to. Dentures must be removed every night to avoid additional bone or tooth loss. This may be inconvenient. Implants are the closest to replacing natural teeth and work like real teeth. Dentures or partials that are loose and move can be also be very uncomfortable and embarrassing.
Are You A Candidate For Implants?
If you are considering implants, your mouth must be examined thoroughly and your medical and dental history reviewed. If you mouth is not ideal for implants, ways of improving outcome, such as bone grafting, may be recommended.
What Type Of Anesthesia Is Used?
The majority of dental implants and minor bone grafts can be performed in the office under local anesthesia, with or without intravenous (IV) anesthesia.
Do Implants Need Special Care?
Once the implants are in place, they will serve you well for many years if you take care of them and keep your mouth healthy. This means taking the time for good oral hygiene (brushing and flossing) and keeping regular appointments with your dental specialists. After Dr. Engel places an implant, you will have follow up visits at least once a year.
For more information about Dental implants or to schedule a consultation appointment, call our office at 860-739-3133
Orthognathic surgery/corrective jaw surgery, oral cancer, treatment and prevention of facial injury, nutrition and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) text excerpted with permission from the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons .