Dental implants are changing the way people live. Implants are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel, and function like natural teeth. An individual who has lost teeth, regains the ability to eat virtually anything, confident that teeth appear natural and that facial contours will be preserved. Patients with dental implants can smile with confidence and enjoy all the foods they might have been missing with lost teeth.
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are small titanium posts that are surgically placed into the jawbone where teeth are missing. These metal posts act as a substitute for the roots of lost teeth. A strong foundation is created by the bonding (osseointegration) of the titanium implant and the bone for artificial teeth to be attached to. The osseointegration process usually takes four to six months and after the healing period a post-like attachment is connected to the implant within the bone and a crown is attached to this post.
Implants can also help preserve facial structure, especially in the anterior region of the face and prevent bone from deteriorating, which occurs when teeth are missing.
Dental implants restored with implant-supported crowns are the closest thing to having natural teeth and are highly recommended in the correct scenario. Unlike bridges, implants are often individual teeth and do not rely on neighboring teeth to be present. For those patients who are currently wearing dentures, implants may be placed to prevent dentures from floating around which causes difficulty eating, smiling and can cause discomfort. Implants are also being used in conjunction with orthodontics (braces) to serve as anchoring devices to move teeth.
Ask us at Mill Creek Dental about implants and we will be happy to show you models and examples of implant cases to help you better understand the implant process and how they are a great advancement in dentistry.