A Patient's Guide to The Dental Implant Procedure

A Patient’s Guide to The Dental Implant Procedure

Team Dental Implants

Dental implants are rapidly gaining popularity as more people are becoming aware of their many benefits. As a tooth replacement option, dental implants are the gold standard. They provide a natural function and appearance, all while improving your oral health and general wellness.

If you’re interested in learning more about dental implants, the patient’s guide to the dental implant procedure will tell you everything you need to know.

What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are artificial tooth roots. These titanium posts are surgically placed in your jaw to take the place of your natural tooth roots. Implants fuse with the bone in your jaw to form a solid bond that provides the same bite and chewing strength as a natural tooth. A dental prosthetic can be attached to the implant to replace the missing tooth or teeth. A single implant can replace one tooth, and multiple implants can replace two or more teeth.

The Dental Implant Placement Procedure

Dental implant tooth replacement is usually performed in stages:

  1. Placing the implant. The first step in the process is to place the implant in the jaw. This is a minor surgical procedure that can be performed with local anesthesia or under light sedation. The gum tissue is opened, the implant is placed.  Depending on the existing bone quality and volume, the implant may be left to integrate into the bone for a period of time before the connection to the tooth replacement is made.  In the right situation, a temporary crown or bridge can actually be connected on the same day.
  2. Attaching the prosthetic. The final step in the process is the attachment of the permanent dental prosthetic. 

Types of Dental Implant Restorations

Dental implants can replace anywhere from one to all of the teeth in your mouth. Restoration options include:

  • Single dental implants. A single dental implant with a crown attached can replace one tooth at a time. If you have one or a few non-adjacent teeth that need to be replaced, single dental implants are ideal.
  • Implant supported bridges. If you have multiple adjacent teeth that need to be replaced, an implant supported bridge requires two dental implants. A bridge consists of crowns on each end and pontics (false or artificial teeth) suspended between them. An implant supported bridge can replace multiple teeth in a row.
  • Implant retained dentures.  When all of the teeth in the upper or lower jaw needs to be replace, two to three implants are used to help retain the denture in place.
  • Implant supported dentures. When all of the teeth in the upper or lower jaw need to be replaced, implant supported dentures can be securely anchored in place with 4 or more dental implants. The implants are strategically placed to provide the strongest support for a full arch denture.

Frequently Asked Questions About Dental Implants

How long does it take to get dental implants?

The procedure to place dental implants may take 1-2 hours for each implant. The entire process to receive your complete dental implant restoration may take anywhere from a few months to a year.

Is a dental implant better than a bridge to replace a single tooth?

When it comes to single tooth replacement, a dental implant has many advantages over a bridge. It is more secure, functions and looks like a natural tooth, and won’t affect the neighboring teeth in any negative way. They are not subject to tooth decay or root canal issues.  They can have greater longevity over conventional bridges with a typical success rate of 95% or more to last 20 years or potentially even longer.

Where Can I Get Dental Implants?

If you need to have one or more teeth replaced, Progressive Periodontics & Implant Dentistry provides dental implant restorations for any number of teeth. The first step is a consultation with Dr. Marc Gordon to discuss implant options and an evaluation to determine your individual needs. Then a treatment plan can be designed to restore your smile.

To learn more, contact us today and schedule an appointment.