In the past, dentists would try to keep or replace teeth with treatments such as root canals, bridges, and fixed or removable dentures. Unfortunately, a significant number of root canal treated teeth fail, bridges require that healthy adjacent teeth be cut down and removable dentures can often be unstable and require the use of sticky adhesives. Dental implants are a solution to these problems, and many of the concerns associated with natural teeth are eliminated, including dental decay.

A Single-Tooth Implant

Single-tooth implants can be used in people who are missing one or more teeth. An tooth implant is surgically placed in an opening that is made by your dentist in the jawbone. After the implant integrates (attaches) to your bone, it acts as a new "root" for the crown that will be Evansville Dentist  your missing tooth. A crown (cap), which is made to look like a natural tooth, is attached to the implant and fills the space left in the mouth by the missing tooth.

For this procedure to work, there must be enough bone in the jaw, and the bone has to be strong enough to hold and support the tooth implant. If there is not enough bone, be may need to be added with a procedure called bone augmentation. In addition, natural teeth and supporting tissues near where the implant will be placed must be in good health.

There are plenty of reasons to replace a missing tooth. A gap between your teeth, if obvious when you smile or speak, is a cosmetic concern.

Depending on their location, some missing teeth may affect your speech. A missing molar might not be noticeable when you talk or smile, but its absence can affect chewing.

When a tooth is missing, the biting force on the remaining teeth begins to change. As the bite changes to compensate for the lost tooth, there is a risk of extra pressure on and discomfort in the jaw joints. If a missing tooth is not replaced, the surrounding teeth can shift. Harmful plaque and tartar can collect in new hard-to-reach places created by the shifting teeth. Over time, this may lead to tooth decay and periodontal disease.

What is a Dental Implant?

A dental implant is one option for replacing a tooth. Evansville Dentist  are manufactured devices that are placed surgically in the upper or lower jaw, where they function as anchors for replacement teeth. Implants are made of titanium and other materials that are compatible with the human body.

An implant-restored tooth consists of several parts.

  • The implant, which is made of titanium, is placed in the upper or lower jawbone.
  • The abutment can be made of titanium, gold or porcelain. It is attached to the implant with a screw. This part connects the implant to the crown.
  • The restoration (the part that looks like a tooth) is a crown, usually made of porcelain fused to a metal alloy (PFM), but also could be an all-metal or all-porcelain crown. The crown is attached either to the abutment or directly to the implant. It can be screwed or cemented onto the abutment. If the crown is screwed to the abutment, the screw hole will be covered with restorative material such as tooth-colored filling material (composite).

An implant looks and feels like a natural tooth. It fits securely when you chew and speak. A single-tooth implant is a free-standing unit and does not involve treatment to the adjacent teeth. With a dental implant, the surrounding teeth can remain untouched if they are healthy, and their strength and integrity may be maintained. The implant can stabilize your bite and help prevent problems with the jaw.

What Happens During the Tooth Implant Procedure?

Treatment generally is a three-part process that takes several months. Your dentist may provide the treatment, or you may be referred to a specialist - such as a Dentist Evansville in , a prosthodontistor an oral and maxillofacial surgeon - for all or part of the treatment.

In the first step, the dentist surgically places the implant in the jaw, with the top of the implant slightly above the top of the bone. A screw is inserted into the implant to prevent gum tissue and other debris from entering.

The gum then is secured over the implant, where it will remain covered for approximately three to six months while the implant fuses with the bone, a process called "Osseo integration. "There may be some swelling and/or tenderness for a few days after the surgery, so pain medication usually is prescribed to alleviate the discomfort. A diet of soft foods, cold foods and warm soup often is recommended during the healing process.

In the second step, the implant is uncovered and the dentist attaches an extension, called a "post," to the implant. The gum tissue is allowed to heal around the post. Once healing is complete, the implant and post will serve as the foundation for the new tooth.

In the final step, the dentist makes a custom artificial tooth, called a "dental crown," of a size, shape, color and fit that will blend with the other teeth. Once completed, the crown is attached to the implant post.

And now, maybe most important part.

We'll try to answer if dental implants ae good choice for you.

  • If you are missing a tooth, or teeth you could be an ideal candidate for implants, especially if your smile reveals missing teeth!
  • If you are uncomfortable with the way your dentures fit. Loose dentures can cause sore gums because of friction or food trapped under the bridgework.
  • Loose teeth from gum disease may need support.
  • Dental implants can give you a new base to support new teeth to function and feel like natural teeth.

In these instances, dental implants can help.

Success and failure rates for dental implant procedure.

Dental implant success is related to operator skill, quality and quantity of the bone available at the site, and also to the patient's oral hygiene. Various studies have found the 5 year success rate of implants to be between 75-95%. Patients who smoke experience significantly poorer Dentist Evansville in rates.

Failure of a dental implant is usually related to failure to osseointegrate correctly. A dental implant is considered to be a failure if it is lost, mobile or shows peri-implant bone loss of greater than one mm in the first year after implanting and greater than 0.2mm a year after that.

Dental implants are not susceptible to dental caries but they can develop a periodontal condition called peri-implantitis where correct oral hygiene routines have not been followed. Risk of failure is increased in smokers. For this reason implants are frequently placed only after a patient has stopped smoking as the treatment is very expensive. More rarely, an implant may fail because of poor positioning at the time of surgery, or may be overloaded initially causing failure to integrate.

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