Dentistry has come a long way in the last century, and specifically, dental implants and oral rehabilitation has opened the doors and mouths with increased treatment possibilities for many patients. Let’s face it – we need our teeth for chewing functionality and to eat, not just for looks. Tooth loss can result in shrinkage of gums and jawbones, and up until recently there were many folks with partial tooth loss who could not live normally.
Due to oral implantology, or dental implants, a new standard of care has emerged and teeth can now be restored for both functionality and aesthetics. Dental implants can also help people with increased chewing capacity, and improved speech in addition to their appearance.
Many a periodontist and dental professionals have branched off and are now specializing in this field, and continuing research spawns new developments on a daily basis emergency dentist open 24 hours Los Angeles. However dental implants are not for people seeking new teeth in an hour; they take time.
Dental implants rely on the bone for support and are substitutes for natural tooth roots. Today oral implants are widely accepted even though failures do occur. The chance for implants to integrate can for example be jeopardized by the presence of intra-oral bacteria and inflammatory reactions. People with adequate bone level and density who are not prone to infection and can maintain the best oral hygiene would be good candidates for dental implants.
There are varying types of implants that are available but the basic definition is that it is a device, or fixture, that is surgically placed into the jaw bone to replace one or several lost roots of teeth. Dental implants are designed to replace the root of a tooth. Implants are the surgically placed part which goes either into, or sits on top of the jawbone, while the actual tooth or teeth that go on top of the implant(s) are referred to as the prosthesis.
Anesthesia techniques can make it easy to perform surgery without too much discomfort. Typically, local anesthesia blocks pain.
Many oral surgeons are equipped with a computerized tomography (CT) program called SIMPLANT, which analyzes the three dimensional images of a CT scan for implant patients. The analysis allows them to measure bone density, height, and width and select the most suitable implant for each case.
According to oral surgeon, Dr. Bijan Afar, “If you are thinking about having a dental implant, you need to know that there are several parts to this process: 1) the device or fixture; 2) an attachment (abutment) with a screw; and 3) the crown (tooth) or prosthesis. Patients need to be aware of several different sequences of events that take place during the implant process, or reconstruction as it’s often called.
There are basically two distinct phases including a surgical phase, and a prosthetic phase. The surgical phase includes all that’s concerned with getting the implant into or onto the bone and getting it ready for the prosthetic phase. The prosthetic phase includes putting a single tooth or teeth on top of the implant(s). After the implant is placed into the jaw bone, a process that is called “osseointegration” allows the bone to grow and tighten around it. This process takes a few months, but after it has integrated with the bone successfully, the next phase can begin.
The second procedure includes a metal attachment that is placed to the implant onto which the final restoration replaces the missing tooth. The analysis measures bone density, height, and width and allows them to select the most suitable implant for each case.
If you are missing one or more of your natural teeth, no matter what age you are, dental implants may be your best solution. They are a long-lasting and pleasing alternative to missing teeth.