Dental implants are often regarded as the ideal replacement for lost teeth. They offer the strength, support, and health benefits of a natural tooth, while providing multiple options for future restorations. While implants are offered by a majority of dentists and oral surgeons, not every professional has the same experience and knowledge of implant types or their surgical nuances. And because implants require a months-long recovery process, sometimes failing due to a number of factors, it is important for every facet of the process to be performed correctly.
When you come to our Bolingbrook oral surgery and implant center, you can rest assured that you will receive top-of-the-line treatment from a team of implant experts. We understand how different implant types may affect a patient’s results, and we aim to share this information with our patients, whether they are simply looking into their treatment options or are expecting implant surgery in the near future.
TYPES OF IMPLANTS
Determining one’s candidacy for implants in only the first step. Once the process has begun, we must then determine what type of implant will be most successful. This involves choosing the implant’s size, surface, and manner of implantation. Here are just a few considerations the oral surgeon must make:
- Implant size: Implant size must be chosen so that the implant provides the greatest amount of support for the restoration while minimizing the chance of implant failure. Consideration must also be given to the amount of space between teeth and mass of the underlying jawbone. After taking X-ray images of your mouth and jaw, we will carefully match an implant size to your individual needs.
- Implant surface: Implants are often thought of as screws, since they share similar aesthetics and even work in a similar manner. However, not all implants are designed to fuse with bone in the same way. Some surfaces are more porous than others, while others are rough or coated. Your implant’s surface should be chosen to complement your jawbone in its structure, space, and density.
- Single–stage vs. two-stage: Implants essentially comprise two parts. The implant itself is the screw-like portion that is inserted into the jaw to serve as the tooth’s roots. Above this part is an abutment, which connects the implant to the restoration. These two parts can be attached immediately after the first procedure, or the abutment can be attached once the implant has fused with the jaw. The single- or two-stage process should be decided between you and your dentist.
RESTORATIONS USED WITH IMPLANTS
While all implants require a similar surgical process and recovery, it is worth considering how implants may be used for multiple forms of tooth loss. For single tooth loss, an implant can be inserted directly in its place, effectively preventing bone loss and shifting teeth. A crown is then placed over the abutment, usually made of porcelain, which is chosen and shaped to match the original tooth. When implants are used for individual teeth, the results are highly comparable to the function and form of natural teeth.
For multiple tooth loss, implants can be used to support dental bridges or dentures. For bridges, an implant can be inserted on either end, which in turn supports and holds the bridge in place. This is particularly useful for patients who do not have enough healthy teeth to support the bridge via crowns, or who do not wish to sacrifice their remaining teeth for the bridge.
Similarly, implants can serve as an effective anchor for dentures. Rather than letting dentures simply sit atop gums, they can be securely fastened to the implant abutments. This ensures that dentures fit perfectly every time and benefit from a tighter hold. Accordingly, dentures feel and act more similarly to natural teeth, and patients may continue eating, speaking, and smiling with greater confidence.
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF A NEW SMILE
Our practice uses only the highest quality of dental implants, made from titanium and manufactured by trusted brands such as Nobel Biocare®, Straumann®, and OCO Biomedical. For more information on the implant process and how it may benefit you, call or email our team for a prompt and helpful response.