If one or more of your teeth are missing, there are a number of ways to replace them. An alternative to bridges, partials, or complete dentures may be dental implants. Implants are used to replace missing roots and support artificial replacement teeth. They are comfortable and look like natural teeth.
A dental implant is an artificial root made of titanium. It is inserted into the jawbone to replace the natural tooth’s roots. The implant acts as an anchor to hold the replacement tooth in place.
Dental implants might be right for you if you are in good general health, have healthy gums, and have enough bone in the jaw to hold an implant. However, if your jawbone has shrunk or has not developed normally, you may be able to have a bone graft to build up the bone. Your dentist will tell you if bone grafting can be done.
Dr. Lawrence Chong will carefully examine your mouth and take x-rays of your head, jaw, and teeth to determine if dental implants are right for you.
During the first stage of surgery, your dentist will put a dental implant into your jawbone beneath the gum tissue. The gum tissue is then stitched back into place. As the tissue heals, the implant will bond with the bone and attach to the gum. It can take several months to heal.
During the second stage of surgery, your dentist will attach an abutment to the implant once the tissue is healed. An abutment is a post that connects the replacement tooth to the implant. In some cases, your dentist will attach the abutment to the implant in one procedure.
An artificial replacement tooth is made, and your dentist attaches it to the abutment. It may take several appointments to fit the replacement tooth to the abutment properly.
A fixed bridge is anchored to your dental implants when replacing several teeth or all of your teeth. A bridge is a dental restoration that replaces one or more missing teeth by spanning an area that with teeth. The bridge is held firmly in place by dental implants on each side of the missing tooth or teeth