Most people only think about the cosmetic implications of missing teeth. Though there is no doubt that a gap in your smile can make it hard to feel confident, missing teeth also have serious dental health ramifications.
Each of your natural teeth is anchored directly into the underlying bone tissue. When you bite or chew, you stimulate that bone, keeping it healthy and strong. Losing a tooth means losing that stimulation, which can cause your bone tissue to wear away in a process called resorption.
That can weaken the connection between your jaw bone tissue and remaining natural teeth, eventually causing additional tooth loss.
Most types of dental implants replace both the visible portion of your tooth as well as the root. These implants consist of a metal post placed directly within your bone tissue, which serves as an artificial root to keep your bone strong. The visible portion of an implant is attached to the post either directly or with a piece called an abutment.
A different type of dental implant called a plate form implant is a good fit if your jaw bone cannot support an implanted post. These implants place a flat, long implant piece on top of your jaw bone. Your bone tissue will eventually fuse to the implant to help secure it in place.
A subperiosteal implant is placed beneath the gum line and on top of the jaw bone. The special frame of the implant will fuse to your bone tissue, and small posts attach the crowns once the healing process is complete.
Other options can replace an entire upper or lower span of teeth using just four implanted posts in the upper or lower jaw.
The planning stage is perhaps the most important part of getting dental implants. Dr. Lebovics uses digital imaging to create an overview of your teeth and bone tissue, as well as the alignment of your teeth.
For single endosteal implants, the process begins by creating an incision in your gums to gain access to the underlying bone. You’ll receive numbing medication to ensure you remain comfortable from start to finish.
A small pilot hole is made to guide the placement of the implant post. Once it is securely in place, Dr. Lebovics closes the gum tissue around it and a period of healing begins. When your bone has fused to the implanted post, you’ll return to have the crown portion installed, completing the restoration.
When you’re ready to learn more about dental implants, call the office to set up a visit, or book online in just moments.