In general, the best way to replace a missing tooth (or teeth) is with dental implants. Dental implants are replacements for your natural teeth. These root-shaped metallic devices are designed to allow your bone to fuse with their surface. The resulting bond allows strong tooth replacements (crowns, bridges, etc.) to be attached to the implant. You can have single or multiple teeth replaced in this way.
The current generation of dental implants, those that fuse to bone, were first placed in the 1960s. These devices allow us to improve your aesthetics and function in ways not previously possible.
The implants we use have a special surface that encourages rapid and strong fusion of bone and implant. In most cases this allows us to replace missing teeth much more rapidly than previously possible. In some cases teeth can be removed and implants can be placed the same day.
To have successful implants you need adequate bone. In areas where you do not have adequate bone, advanced techniques usually allow us to re-grow needed bone either prior to or along with implant placement. In many cases, special x-rays will help us determine the amount of bone before therapy starts.
The sequence of therapy normally goes as follows: a planning stage, placement of the implant(s), restoration of the implant(s) by your regular dentist, and maintenance.
The planning stage usually includes appropriate x-rays, clinical examinations, and consultations with a restorative dentist.
Placing the implant in optimal position is usually enhanced by a specially fabricated surgical guide. This guide is fabricated before the placement stage either by our office or a restorative dentist and increases the chances of optimal placement of the implant thereby increasing the probability of an excellent esthetic outcome.
Restoration of your implants may occur the day of placement, a few weeks, or several months after placement. The timing of the restoration is determined by multiple factors which include the size and stability of the implant(s) at the time of placement, the number of implants placed, the position of the implants, and multiple other factors. The final restoration of your implant(s) will be performed by a restorative dentist.
Few implants fail. Those that fail usually do so because of infection or excess forces. Once your implant(s) is restored, periodic evaluation and possibly cleaning of that implant and its restoration are important. To reduce the probability of infection effective daily oral hygiene is important. If you clench or grind your teeth at night we suggest the fabrication and wearing of a protective device worn while sleeping to reduce the amount of pressure on your implants.
Call Dallas Office Phone Number 214-691-2404 to schedule a consultation.
FAQs about dental implants
1. Does placing the implants hurt?
During the surgical procedure appropriate anesthetics are used to keep you comfortable. Following implant placement most patients feel the need for medication designed to relieve discomfort the day of the surgery. Few patients need this type of medication for more than 24-48 hours.
2. Are implants expensive?
Yes, if done correctly. The time it takes to properly plan the case, place, and restore the implant(s) is greater than that required for most other dental procedures. This means that the average implant may be more expensive than the average fixed bridge. One should consider, however, that the average implant lasts far longer than the average bridge and that implants add back the strength lost when a tooth is removed. Other forms of restorations do not.
3. How long will it take until I can get my teeth?
This depends on your situation. Some implants can be put into function the day they are placed; some require several months before they can be put into function.
4. Will my implants set off a metal detector at an airport?
5. Will I have to go without my front teeth while the implants heal?
No. A temporary tooth or teeth can be fabricated and worn while your implants are healing.