Benefits of implants

An implant and crown is practically indistinguishable from your natural teeth, and it fits so securely that you won’t even notice it when you chew and speak. When we place an implant, it’s not necessary for us to alter the structure of the adjacent teeth, so their strength and integrity is maintained. Also, an implant replaces the roots of a missing tooth, which helps lessen the bone loss that occurs when a tooth is missing. In essence, an implant is the next big thing to your natural tooth.

Do implants work for everyone?

Start-to-finish, the procedure may require several months to complete because it can take about four to six months for the implant to fuse to your bone tissue through a process called osseointegration. An implant wonÕt work if you aren’t in good general health. Your gums and jawbone must be healthy enough to support the implant, and you must be meticulous about your daily homecare routine. YouÕll also need to visit us up to four times a year for cleanings.

We won’t recommend an implant if you suffer from a chronic illness such a diabetes, as this can interfere with healing. And if you’re a smoker, you may not be a good candidate for an implant. Smokers are at a greater risk for gum disease, and gum disease weakens the bone and soft tissue needed to support an implant.

If you’re interested in replacing a missing tooth with an implant, we will perform a thorough evaluation to determine whether your health and lifestyle make you a good candidate for this kind of restoration.

Single tooth implants

Why replace a missing tooth?

When you lose a tooth, the biting forces change on the teeth next to the space, causing them to shift. Opposing teeth may even begin to extrude out of the socket, which mean they too could eventually be lost.  As your bite changes, it gets more difficult to chew your food, and you may suffer damage to your jaw point. It’s also much harder to clean teeth that have shifter; harmful plaque and tartar collect in the new hard-to-reach places created by shifting, causing tooth decay and periodontal disease.

For all these reasons, it’s critical that we replace a lost tooth. An excellent option for replacing a missing tooth is an artificial tooth secured by a dental implant. Implants are titanium cylinders that res surgically placed in your jaw to serve as artificial tooth roots. Attaching a replacement tooth to an implant allows us to avoid placing a bridge. Bridges require that we prepare the adjacent natural teeth, and that weakens them substantially

Mini Implants

Mini implants are small, less expensive implants which are used for stabilizing dentures and allowing for a much better functioning denture.

Bone grafting

When you’ve lost bone from your jaw, we can often restore it by performing a surgical procedure called bone grafting. Bone grafting techniques and technology enable us to restore the health and strength of the bone that supports your teeth.

Why is bone grafting used?

The area from which the bone was lost, often called a bony defect, may be a result of periodontal disease, removal of a tooth, trauma, a cyst, or long term tooth loss. Though your body can’t normally grow new bone on its own, with bone grafting, we can help your body replace lost or missing bone, fill in pocket of bone loss, and stimulate new bone and soft tissue growth.

The procedure

  • First we select the bone grafting material. We may use your own natural bone, bone tissue from another source, or artificial bone.

  • To place the bone graft, we begin by making sure the area is completely numb, and then we gently separate the gums from the bone or tooth. If a tooth is present in the grafting site, we’ll use a process called root planning to remove all of the plaque or tartar from the root surfaces of the tooth. This ensures that the area is free from harmful bacteria.

  • We then sculpt the surrounding bone to the desired shape and place the grafting material into the bony defect. 

  • Sometimes, we’ll take another step, called guided tissue regeneration. In this procedure, a special membrane is placed over the graft site to prevent unwanted tissue from growing into the graft site, and to enhance normal bone growth.

  • After the graft is placed, your gums are the repositioned over the graft site, and several sutures are placed.

  • Over the course of three to nine months, your body works to repair the grafted site, growing new soft tissue and bone. This new bone growth strengthens the area by connecting your existing bone with the bone material we placed during the procedure.