Dental implants are a high-quality and natural-looking alternative for tooth replacement. They have a root portion that is implanted directly into the jawbone, allowing them to function just like your natural teeth. The procedure for placing implants requires local anesthesia at a minimum and sometimes can require general anesthesia, depending upon how many teeth are being replaced.
Implant Surgery – How It Works
An implant procedure begins by placing an artificial root in the jawbone. This requires a surgical procedure in which an incision is made in the gums, and the implant is set into the bone. The implant itself is shaped much like a screw and is made of titanium or a titanium alloy. If you are only having one or two implants placed, your periodontist or implant dentist might recommend local anesthesia or a local combined with sedation, such as nitrous oxide. If you are having several teeth replaced—for example if you need to have all of your top teeth replaced—general anesthetic might be more appropriate to ensure you are comfortable during the surgery.
After the initial surgery, some time must pass to allow the jawbone to bond to the implant. This process, called osseointegration, ensures that the implants remain stationary and that they will help keep your jawbone healthy over time so it will not atrophy. Once this bonding process has completed, the prosthetic teeth are added to the implants.
Benefits of Dental Implants
Dental implants are considered to be the most effective form of tooth replacement. They remain stationary in the mouth, so you can eat any foods you could prior to losing your teeth. This includes foods like apples and corn on the cob, which are difficult to eat with dentures. Implants also help stimulate jawbone growth, which dentures cannot do. This helps to maintain the shape of your face from changing over time. Atrophy of the jawbone is common among people who have lost their teeth and have had them replaced with dentures.
Our team of caring specialists are ready to answer any questions or concerns you have about implant surgery. Call us to schedule an appointment with us today!