When considering what kind of tooth replacement would work for you, give some thought to dental implants. Dental implants are a kind of tooth replacement that most resembles a natural tooth. They are among the most popular forms of tooth replacements for a variety of reasons we will explore in this article.
What is a dental implant?
A dental implant takes the place of a missing tooth or teeth and is generally made of three parts:
- Crown: The actual tooth-like part of the implant is generally made of ceramic or similar material and is shaped to resemble your natural teeth.
- Abutment: Sometimes called a “connector”, the abutment us used to secure the crown to the base, and is often hexagonal or octagonal in shape.
- Base: The base is a screw, most often made of titanium that actually fuses with the bone to profile a safe and stable base for the implant.
What does the process look like?
Getting a dental implant requires oral surgery, and this is usually performed while under sedation and is performed by a certified dental surgeon. The surgery is preceded by an evaluation to see if the jaw is able to accept the implant and if there will be need for a bone graft before the actual implant surgery.
During the implant surgery, the implant dentist will begin by drilling a small hole in the jawbone and then carefully screw the base into the bone. The gum is then placed over the implant so that it can heal. The healing process can take a number of weeks, or months, and while uncomfortable, is necessary in order for there to be a secure fit.
After the site has been thoroughly healed, a second surgery is needed to fit the connector to the hop of the implant. Then the crown is placed, often in the same visit. The crown is connected with a specialized kind of dental cement and a small screw.
The implant will then act very much like a normal tooth, and must be kept clean, just like your natural teeth. Be sure to brush twice daily and floss at least once a day.
What is the difference between the different materials used in the implant?
There are a number of key differences between the many different materials that your implant could be made from. During the consultation, your dentist will help you find the best one for you depending on your health and finances.
The most important thing to consider is that your periodontist is board-certified and well-versed in the most modern implant material options available. There are now over 60 FDA-approved manufacturers of dental implants that vary in sophistication, quality and reliability.
Be sure to do some research into the reliability and track record of the dentist you will have the surgery with. If you want to arrange a free consultation with us at Upland Dental Group & Implant Center in Upland, CA, give us a call at (909) 985-1966 today to arrange an appointment.