If you have missing teeth due to injury, decay or disease, but your gums are healthy, your oral health is generally good, and you have sufficient bone mass in your jaw, you could be an ideal candidate for dental implants. Implants are simply synthetic teeth that, unlike a bridge, does not require adjacent teeth for support and stability.
With dental implants, you can chew comfortably and never run the risk of the types of embarrassment that can be associated with removable teeth. Implants feel, look and perform exactly like your own natural teeth, and with proper care, they will last forever.
The two types of dental implants are endosteal and subperiosteal.
Endosteal, or “in the bone”, implants are the most common. They’re anchored surgically in the jawbone, and consist of screws, blades or cylinders. Each implant serves at least one prosthetic tooth. Endosteal implants are an alternative to dentures or bridges.
Subperiosteal, or “on the bone” implants, are placed atop the jaw, with the posts of the metal framework protruding through the gums in order to hold the prosthetic teeth.
Patients who have minimal bone height and cannot wear conventional dentures benefit from this type of implant.
Your dentist and a periodontist will work together to determine whether implants are an appropriate course of treatment for you. Periodontists are experts who specialize in the gum tissues and bone structure in your mouth.
If you are missing just one tooth, one implant along with a crown will be all the treatment that is needed. If several teeth are missing, you will probably require implant-supported bridges. All of your teeth can be replaced using an implant-supported full bridge.
If implants are needed for the upper back jaw, you may require sinus augmentation. This is because there often is insufficient bone, or poor-quality bone, close to the sinus area. With sinus augmentation, the sinus floor is raised so that implants can be more effectively placed.
If there are deformities in the lower or upper jaw, the bone may be inadequate for placing implants. A ridge modification can correct this problem. With this procedure, the gum is lifted away from the ridge, exposing the inadequate bone. The defective area is then filled either with bone, or with a bone substitute, building up the ridge in order to increase the potential for successful implants.
Following your implant surgery, your dentist and periodontist will work with you to develop a treatment plan. You can expect that it will be much like what you are already used to – you know that in order to maintain a beautiful smile, your natural teeth have always required good oral care and regular checkups. Dental implants are no different – they look and feel just like your own teeth, and they require the same type of care. You will still have to brush and floss regularly.
Contact us at Tribeca Smiles today to discuss the ways in which dental implants can improve your oral health and give you a dazzling smile.