Dental implants are a natural-looking replacement teeth option, whether you’re missing one or all of your adult teeth.
The team of oral and maxillofacial surgeons at California Oral and Facial Surgery in Alameda, California, can provide customized dental implants to restore your smile and protect your oral health.
Call or schedule a consultation online today.
WHAT IS A DENTAL IMPLANT?
A dental implant is a prosthetic tooth that your surgeon places directly into your jaw. Dental implants consist of artificial tooth roots (a titanium post), a dental crown, and an abutment to connect them.
Your surgeon implants the titanium implant fixture in your jaw, where it acts as a tooth root, both supporting the rest of the device and stimulating healthy bone growth in your jaw.
Dental implant posts are made of titanium because it is biocompatible. This means the metal can bond with your bone in a process called osseointegration to create a stable foundation.
WHAT ARE ALL-ON-4 DENTAL IMPLANTS?
All-on-4 dental implants, also known as hybrid dentures, consist of a full arch of artificial teeth. The arch is secured to your jaw with just four implanted posts.
Hybrid dentures are a good option to replace missing teeth if you have multiple teeth missing, such as when replacing your full set of teeth.
The time it takes to replace a full set is much quicker with All-on-4 dental implants. It may be possible in a single day, whereas it can take several months to replace all your teeth with individual dental implants.
CAN ANYONE GET DENTAL IMPLANTS?
The dental implants procedure will be suitable for you if you are healthy enough to have a dental extraction or any other oral surgery. It’s also important that you have healthy gums and sufficient bone density to secure the implant.
You must be committed to maintaining good oral hygiene and schedule regular dental visits after dental implant surgery.
If you use tobacco products or suffer from uncontrolled chronic disorders, such as diabetes or heart disease, or have had radiation therapy to the head/neck area, then you will need to be evaluated on an individual basis.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF DENTAL IMPLANT?
The dental specialists at California Oral and Facial Surgery recommend dental implant treatment as the number one tooth-replacement procedure.
Consider the following reasons why you should choose dental implants:
Dental implants are made to look exactly like your natural teeth.
The implant screw integrates into the bone structure so your teeth won’t slip forward. Replacement teeth give structure to sagging skin resulting from missing teeth.
A removable denture has the tendency to slip while you’re speaking, causing you to mumble or slur your words. Dental implants don’t move around in your mouth, giving you greater control over your speech.
When removable dentures move around in your mouth, they can become uncomfortable. Dental implants are fixed and, therefore, offer greater comfort.
You can eat crispy or crunchy foods with confidence with dental implants. They have a similar strength to your natural teeth.
Smiling restores confidence, and you can smile confidently with dental implants as they have the appearance of real teeth.
Improved Oral Health
A tooth-supported bridge will often require that you reduce other teeth for the bridge to fit.
A dental implant, on the other hand, will be made to fit in the space. As adjacent teeth are unaffected, a dental implant will bring long-term oral health benefits.
As the dental implant is made to fit, there will be enough space to floss between adjacent teeth, improving oral hygiene.
Most dental implants will not need to be replaced again as the materials are made to last.
Removable dentures require awkward maintenance and cleaning schedules. Dental implants, though, can be cared for just like your natural teeth. That means no more messy adhesives!
Prevents Bone Loss
If you are missing teeth, the underlying jaw bone can weaken due to a lack of stimulation. Dental implants integrate with the surrounding bone, promoting bone growth.
If you would like to enjoy the benefits that dental implants can bring, call the California Oral and Facial Surgery office or book an appointment online.
HOW DO I GET DENTAL IMPLANTS?
Dental implants can take a few months to install from the initial consultation to the end. Considering the benefits, though, they are well worth the wait.
During your first appointment, the surgeon at California Oral and Facial Surgery will take X-rays and scans to check the density of your jawbone and answer any questions you might have. One X-ray that may be performed is called a CBCT scan.
It may be necessary to have a bone graft if your jawbone is not strong enough.
The surgeon will often perform a bone graft when the replacement tooth is to be implanted towards the back of the mouth in the maxilla (upper jaw)
It is usually required there because of the maxillary sinus (air-filled space found in the bones of the face). Your surgeon can provide a small surgical procedure called a sinus lift to raise the sinus floor, and bone is grafted into the sinus.
Your dental specialist may also decide to use small-diameter implants, or mini implants, which require less support from the bone structure.
Next, once the surgeon is happy with the bone density of your jaw, the dental implant is placed into your jawbone.
A hole is drilled in the jawbone and a titanium screw will be placed into the hole. Then the opening in your gums will be stitched shut. After about three to six months your implant will be fully fused to your jawbone.
Once the stabilizing process has finished, you’ll return to the office for your prosthetic – usually a crown or dentures – to be screwed into place. Once this step has been completed, the process is complete and you can start enjoying the many benefits that dental implants bring.
HOW SHOULD I TAKE CARE OF A DENTAL IMPLANT?
After surgery, you will need to be careful that the gum tissue and bone surrounding the implant does not become inflamed. The condition is called peri-implantitis. It is similar to periodontal disease, which affects natural teeth.
Inflammation can be caused either by excessive biting forces on the implant or by bacterial infection. It can become so severe that you could lose your dental implant to peri-implantitis.
To avoid this, you will need to follow a good routine of cleaning at home and follow-up visits at the dental office.
There is nothing special that you need to do. Just brush your teeth and floss as you would your real teeth. This will be enough to keep your implant clean by removing the food particles and plaque.
However, in order to clean all-on-4 dental implants, more steps and tools are needed.
At the dental office, the oral surgeons will examine the soft and hard tissues around the implant site and remove harder calcified deposits.
Your bite alignment can be adjusted if the implant needs protecting from heavy biting forces.
If you’re missing a tooth or several teeth, call California Oral and Facial Surgery or make an appointment online today to find out if implant dentistry is the right way for you to replace your missing teeth.
CAN ALL MY TEETH BE REPLACED WITH DENTAL IMPLANTS?
Dental implants are a great choice when replacing all your teeth. You don’t need to worry about escalating costs.
There is no need to have a single implant for every single missing tooth. Instead, four implants can be used to replace an entire upper or lower set.
Then a hybrid denture or a bridge of crowns can be fixed to these implants, replacing all your teeth. You will save costs but still experience the benefits of dental implants.
ARE ALL DENTAL IMPLANT PROCEDURES SUCCESSFUL?
You can be confident that your dental implant procedure will be successful. Researchers have gathered information over the past 30 years and have seen that the procedure is successful 95% of the time.
What makes dental implants more successful than other types of implants is the use of titanium. It has special properties that allow the metal to be accepted in the body. This is unlike other types of implants, such as soft tissue implants like kidney or liver implants.