What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are rapidly becoming the restoration of choice following the loss of a tooth. With this technique, we can replace a tooth by rebuilding the lost root. Once the process is complete, the surgeon you are working with at Westlake Oral and Plastic Surgery will have done more than provide a false tooth; our team will have recreated a permanent tooth, protecting the health of your jaw bone, without the reliance or alteration of neighboring teeth. Working with our staff at Westlake Oral and Plastic Surgery, we can show you the difference that a dental implant can make in replacing a single or even multiple teeth. Beginning with a dental exam, we can create a treatment plan that is specific to your needs.
A dental implant is not a false tooth; it is a metal device that is surgically embedded into the jaw. Visually, the implant appears very similar to a screw in size and shape. The main difference is the metal that is used, implants are made using titanium, and in the head of the implant. The head is designed to have an abutment or dental crown fitted onto it. This design sets an implant apart from other restorations. An implant is the only restoration that fully and independently restores a missing tooth. Other devices such as a bridge, partial denture or full denture, on their own, are only able to attach with the assistance of other teeth, or suction, although implants can also be used in tandem with these other devices.
The size of the implant used, including the length and width, is determined by some factors including the number of teeth we are replacing, the health of the patient’s bone, and the prosthetic device that is being attached. The oral surgeon that is handling your care will review with you a wide variety of options available and can help you decide the best course of treatment for your specific needs.
How do dental implants work?
Once a treatment plan has been designed, the basic concept of a dental implant is the same. Decades of research has proven that titanium is extremely biocompatible with our bone tissue. This compatibility allows your bone to be able to successfully heal around the metal device, creating tissue attachments that bond the bone and metal together. This healing process is known as osseointegration, which in medical terms means the bringing into the bone. Once the bone has healed around the implant, the two are bonded together for a firm hold. The healing of bone is a longer process than the healing of soft tissues; the process can take months.
Once the bone and implant are fused together a dental crown can be placed over the implant, fully restoring the tooth. This is often done by your referring dentist. In some cases, this same implant may be used as a solid base for another prosthetic, including a bridge or denture. The implant is a solid post that allows a dentist to attach the necessary device allowing for restoration.
The placement of a dental implant is a permanent solution, in most cases lasting the patient a lifetime. If you would like more information on dental implants, and how they can make a difference in your oral health, contact our staff at Westlake Oral and Plastic Surgery. They can assist you in scheduling appointments and answer your questions. (805) 267-9766
Dental implants and All-on-4® Treatment Concept has literally transformed millions of lives. Why not see what they can do for you or someone you love? Want to know more?
Call us at (805) 267-9766 to schedule a consultation, to see if dental implants are right for you.
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