What is an implant?
A dental implant is an artificial tooth root placed into the
jaw that fuses with your own natural bone.
The implant acts as a post to which an artificial tooth,
bridge, or denture is attached.
Dental implants generally involve four phases (subject
to each individual treatment planning based on your
Phase 1 - Obtaining a CBCT scan (3D) and impressions
of your mouth for working models and commencing the
implant (s) planning.
Phase 2 - Surgical placement of the implant (s) and gum
or bone grafting if required.
Phase 3 - After a few months determined by our doctors,
the next step is the attachment of the appliance to the
implant by your general dentist.
What are the benefits of getting an implant?
Aesthetics - The result is a strong, natural looking,
permanent tooth replacement. Dental implants can help
prevent bone loss from occurring after tooth extraction,
and they provide excellent stability and comfort.
Prevention - If no implant is placed in the first year of
losing a tooth, that bone could lose its volume, and bone
loss continues over the years. With a dental implant, the
titanium rod acts as the new root, stimulating new bone
growth through a process called osseointegration.
Long term solution - Implants are a good long-term
solution because they never develop decay or require
root canal therapy. In addition, successful implants can
last much longer than a tooth-supported bridge.
What options do patients usually have?
Single Implant and Crown - In this scenario, a single tooth space is replaced with an implant and crown.
This option has advantages over a bridge because:
- The adjacent teeth do not need to be drilled
- The final product is easier to clean
- Implant solutions can last longer then bridges
- The bone will be maintained around the implant
- A bridge will allow bone to continue to slowly resorb under the toothless site
Multiple implants - In this situation, two or more implants are placed to support multiple attached crowns. This can eliminate the need for traditional loose dentures, or long bridges (which can completely fail if one of the retaining teeth are lost).
Other solutions - If you are missing all of your teeth, a number of implants can be placed and restored with either a removable denture or non-removable solution.
Removable Denture - This option uses specialized dentures which securely “snap” onto the implants in the patient’s mouth, but can be taken on and off for cleaning and sleeping purposes. Advantages include lower cost (compared to other options), significantly improved stability of the dentures (compared to traditional dentures without implants to support them), and in the case of a complete upper denture, less coverage of the roof of the patient’s mouth.
Non-Removable Solution - There are two main non-removable solutions. The first solution permanently attaches a specialized denture to the implants in the patient’s mouth that can only be removed by a dental professional. This allows for the replacement of all the patient’s teeth with good aesthetics and the knowledge that the patient doesn’t have to worry about removing their denture after meals, or at bedtime.
The second option uses multiple bridges attached to a patient’s implants in order to restore their smile. If the patient is a suitable candidate for this procedure, this option can provide excellent aesthetics and natural looking porcelain teeth.