Dental implants are synthetic teeth that are used to take the place of missing or damaged teeth. Dental implants are made of metal, generally, titanium as it bonds well biologically with the living bone. Dental implant procedure is the complete end to end process from the first time an individual walks into the dental clinic until the time they walks out of the clinic with their wonderful smile enhanced or restored.
The Complete Dental Implant Procedure is a joint effort between the surgical dentist who is responsible for setting the dental implant in place and the restorative dentist who handles the final restoration of the teeth.
Will the dental implant look natural? Yes, the dental implant replacement tooth should look very natural in your mouth. In fact, unless you tell them, most people will never be able to tell the replacement tooth from your natural teeth. When you have your regular cleanings at your dentist’s clinic, they will clean your dental implants as well. The teeth will blend in naturally in your mouth, and you may even forget you have dental implants!
Dentists often prefer dental implants to the bridge procedure. Why is this? With implants, the health of the surrounding teeth is not endangered. Sometimes with a bridge, neighboring teeth can be damaged by the grinding that is necessary to support the bridge. An implant replaces the root and helps preserve the jawbone; whereas, bridgework can sometimes cause deterioration to the jawbone. Dental implants are also much easier to clean than bridges.
This process of Dental implant is carried out in two different stages. The dental implant surgery itself and the final restoration of your teeth. There is a minimum gap of three months of healing pe
riod between the two stages.
Dental Implant Surgery: For the
dental implant procedure itself, you will be under general anesthesia. The dentist will implant the artificial tooth into your jaw. It will take some months for the implant and the bone to grow together and hold your artificial tooth in place. Sometimes, you may wear a temporary tooth replacement in the implant site. During the healing months, the jaw bone grows around the implant, and the implant connects structurally and functionally with the bone. This process is called Osseointegration.
If you have insufficient jawbone, you may have to undergo bone grafting before the implant procedure. If you have sturdy enough jawbones, the implant procedure may proceed directly. After receiving anesthesia, your gum is opened, and the jawbone is drilled. The implant is then inserted followed by the stitching of the gum opening.
Restoration of the Implant: After the first procedure, a second procedure attaches the extension where your new artificial tooth will be placed. Some dentist’s offices have one stage implant procedures. This will depend on upon your dentist and also your preferences
This stage calls for the restorative dentist who places a crown like an object on top of the implant. Post the healing period; the surgical dentist inspects the status of the jaw bone, and once he is convinced that the implant is firmly held, another hole is punctured right above the implant and a metal cylinder called an abutment is attached. The artificial tooth is built into this abutment. Once the abutment is adjusted in place, the dentist measures and determines the size of the artificial tooth and the details are sent to the dental laboratory for constructing the artificial tooth. Till the final tooth is ready, a temporary implant tooth will be placed on the abutment. Once the reconstructed tooth is ready, the restorative dentist places the new tooth and carries out some final touches if required.
Both the procedures are very simple and common. In the case where the jaw bone is not a suitable candidate to begin with the Dental implant surgery, it is crafted and reshaped by bone grafting or a sinus lift process for it to be able to receive the implant.
The time taken to complete the dental implant procedure may vary from individual to individual depending on the individual’s anatomy, physical condition, and other oral hygiene requirements. However, the greatest time is consumed by Osseointegration or the healing process.
There are cases where the dentists can restore the false tooth right on the day of the surgery. This is called immediate loading and takes less time. This enables the individual to walk home with his smile restored on the very same day.