Doc, What is a Dental Implant?!
Patients sometimes come in and want to replace a missing tooth. The answer, in many cases, can be a dental implant. But what IS a dental implant? Here we're going to try and answer some frequently asked questions that you may have. A dental implant is quickly becoming the standard of care to replace one tooth, and can be used to replace many teeth and even sometimes replace full dentures.
Before we decide about placing an implant, we do an exam to determine your bone level and may take a film or two to measure the bone and design of the implant. We may recommend a bone scan which gives us a 3D image of your exact bone type and shape to better serve you. An implant is basically a cylinder that is placed inside the jaw and fuses with the bone over time. A metal post, or cleat, is placed to the implant and a crown is cemented on. When we place the implant, we let you heal for about 6 weeks so that this can take place. Once this happens, we get started making the crown. But don't worry, the whole time this process happens, we give you a temporary tooth replacement so we don't leave you looking like a hockey player!
The advantages to the implants are that we no longer have to drill on the teeth next to the space to make a bridge. Less drilling means you keep those teeth healthier and longer! And with close to a 100% success rate, implants are the best and most current technology to replace missing teeth. They can't decay like natural teeth, and once they fuse to bone, are locked in for good.
Remember, we are always here if you have questions so never hesitate to call or come in for a consultation!