Your dental health is an important component to your overall health and wellbeing. For many, dental implants are the best solution for properly restoring broken and/or missing teeth, caused by injury or decay. They are a secure, stable and natural-looking replacement that should last the rest of your life.
The best candidates for dental implants are generally in good health, have healthy gums and do not use tobacco. Following the procedures, our patients enjoy being able to eat anything, speak naturally and sport a smile that is supported by the bone structure nature intended.
Dental implants—a three-part process
Unlike the implications of some advertisements, the true dental implant process takes more than a day. It consists of three parts:
- Step one is to evaluate the quality and health of the bone the implant is to be placed in. Dr. Duffy or the specialist will take a 3D scan of your jaw, and if needed, grow new bone in the area to provide a solid, healthy foundation. This step may require several months of healing prior to implant placement but is not always required.
- The actual “implant” is a titanium or zirconia screw which is placed surgically into the jaw bone. The screw acts as the replacement root for your new teeth. You may have one or several of these implants placed into your jaws, depending upon if you require single tooth for tooth replacements, or support for a longer multi-tooth solution. Surgical healing from this process takes approximately four to six months because your bone needs to grow around the screw and heal enough to hold the implant in place. (Scientific evidence has shown that titanium and bone have a unique ability to fuse together, creating a strong foundation.)
- In the final stage, we develop your new crown or bridge which will be permanently attached to your implants, or the adaptation of your new or existing denture to them. These require an “abutment” at the top of each implant screw. The abutments will shape the gums for better health and appearance, and connect to and hold the crowns, bridges, or dentures in place. So the “dental implant” is itself also three parts: implant, abutment, and restoration.
Schedule a consultation to learn more.
If you are considering dental implants, talk to us about the process of learning more about whether dental implants are right for you. Dr. Duffy will explain what to expect, review any risks, and answer any further questions. Depending upon your final decision we may refer you to a periodontal specialist for the seating of the implants. After all, it is an investment in time, energy and financial resource. Our priority for you is that you love your results!