What is a Dental Implant?
Dental implants are titanium screws used to replace tooth roots.
Implants are placed in the gap left by a lost tooth and may have a crown or bridge affixed to them. Implants can also support dentures, improving their fit and retention.
Dental implants may replace a lost tooth or many missing teeth. They can:
- Address bite or joint pain issues
- Prevent surrounding teeth from shifting
- Improve chewing, speaking and digestion
- Prevent bite and jaw joint problems caused by teeth shifting
- Restore the 'sunken face' look associated with missing teeth
At Valley Dental, we typically refer patients to a local dental surgeon for dental implants.
How Does a Dental Implant Work?
To perform dental implant procedures, your dentist will use 3 different pieces, placing them in your mouth at 2 appointments: the screw, the abutment and the dental restoration that will be affixed to the top like a crown or bridge.
First, the metal root will be surgically placed into the jaw bone. Generally, it will take 4 to 6 months for the surgical implant to heal before the artificial tooth or teeth can be placed.
Once your implant has healed, your dentist will attach the abutment and tooth replacement to the metal root. This mimics the functionality of a natural tooth
Dental Implant FAQs
The following are some of the most commonly asked questions about dental implants.
- Are implant procedures typically successful?
The implant procedure is successful for many patients.
However, with dental implants, as with any procedure, there is some risk of complications arising.
- Will the dental implant procedure be painful?
You aren't likely to experience major discomfort during and after a procedure. Your dentist will review anesthesia options with you and plan your procedure accordingly.
Dental implant placements general are conducted under local anesthesia.
- Will I be able to chew normally?
Following treatment using a dental implant, your ability to chew should significantly improve when compared with your ability before receiving an implant.
After some time with your new implant, many patients find they can chew almost just as well as they could with a full jaw of natural teeth.
- How long will my dental implants last?
With proper care, there is no time limit on how long dental implants can last and dental implant systems continue to improve.