Of all the ways modern dentistry has to replace missing teeth, dental implants are by far the best. There’s no tooth-replacement option that will give you a longer-lasting and natural-looking result. Dental implants look and feel like your own teeth, and because they are designed to fuse with bone, they become permanent. Moreover, implants have a documented success rate of 97%, which is significantly higher than any other tooth-replacement option.
What are Dental Implants?
A dental implant is an artificial tooth root that is placed into your jaw to hold a replacement tooth. A dental implant post is a replacement for your missing tooth’s root. Not only does it fuse with your bone like a root, but it also stimulates and preserves your bone structure. Dental implants are an option for people who have lost one or more teeth due to periodontal disease, an injury, or other reasons.
Dental implants typically have three parts:
- The implant: A screw that serves as a root for your new teeth and permanently attaches to your jaw.
- The abutment: A connector that supports and holds the replacement tooth or set of teeth.
- The crown or replacement tooth.
Who is a Good Candidate for Permanent Tooth Replacements?
Anyone with healthy gums and enough bone to hold the implant is a good candidate for teeth implants. If your jawbone is too soft or isn’t thick enough, you may need bone grafting before having dental implant surgery. A bone graft can create a more solid base for the implant. Your gums must also be free of periodontal disease.
How Long Do Teeth Implants Last?
With regular brushing and flossing and regular dental check-ups every 6 months, the implant screw itself can last a lifetime. However, the crown usually lasts about 10 to 15 years before it may need a replacement due to wear and tear.
Types of Implants
There are two common types of dental implants that you can choose from:
- Endosteal implant: Endosteal is the most commonly used type of dental implant. They are placeholder posts shaped like screws inserted deep into the jawbone, where they take the place of tooth roots.
- Subperiosteal implant: This type of implant is used in patients with insufficient bone height. Subperiosteal implants are placed on top of the jaw and beneath the gums, with the metal framework’s posts protruding through the gum to hold the prosthesis.
Teeth Implant Procedure
The dental implant procedure at Washington Court House Dental is usually an outpatient procedure and may be done under local anesthesia, IV sedation, or general anesthesia. The entire process can take several months from start to finish, with much of that time devoted to healing and waiting for the growth of new bone in your jaw.
- Exam: The first step in the implant procedure is a comprehensive evaluation of your mouth, including teeth, gums, and jawbone, to determine whether you have enough healthy jawbone to maintain the implant. Our dentists, Dr. Michael Pappas and Dr. Taylor Landgraf, will develop a customized treatment plan that addresses your specific needs.
- Placing the implant: During surgery to place the implant, we will cut the gum, exposing the jawbone underneath. If you have an endosteal implant placed, holes will be drilled into the bone where the dental implant metal post will be placed. Since the post will serve as the tooth root, it’s implanted deep into the bone. A healing cap is placed over the implant, and the gum is stitched. For a subperiosteal implant, your jawbone won’t be drilled, and the implant will be placed on or above the bone. We typically place a temporary denture over the gap for aesthetic purposes.
- Healing: Healing time is usually anywhere from two to six months. During this time, the implant becomes integrated with the bone, a process known as osseointegration. It’s important to avoid putting force or stress on the dental implant as it heals.
- Placing the crown: Once the implant has bonded to the jawbone, we will attach an abutment to the implant to securely hold the crown. We’ll take impressions of your teeth to make a natural-looking crown. The crown is either cemented on or secured with a screw to the abutment. Because the implant is secured within the jawbone, the replacement teeth look, feel, and function like natural teeth.
Cost of Dental Implants
Dental implant costs vary depending on the number of teeth you’re replacing and the complexity of the procedure. Generally, each implant will cost around $2,000-$4,500. However, insurance may pay a portion of the dental implant cost, so be sure to check your coverage with your insurance carrier.
Restore Your Smile With Dental Implants Today!
Dental implants are strong and long-lasting tooth replacement options, giving you a solution that will let you eat, talk, and smile with ease for decades to come. At Washington Court House Dental, we help our patients transform their smiles with teeth implants. Our dentists are committed to the quality of your dental results and the quality of your experience while under our care. We’re dedicated to helping you receive a personalized, streamlined, and comfortable dental implant experience – from start to finish. Contact us today to schedule your appointment!