Dental implants are a type of tooth replacement option that involve the surgical placement of small metal posts into the jawbone to support a natural-looking prosthetic. Implants are designed to mimic the look and function of natural teeth, providing patients with a fully restored smile. Dentists can use them to replace one or multiple missing teeth.
A dental implant is made of a biocompatible material, typically titanium, which allows it to naturally fuse with the jawbone over time. This process, known as osseointegration, creates a strong foundation for the custom prosthetic.
The Dental Implant Structure
- Implant Body: The main part of the implant that’s usually made of titanium or a titanium alloy. It’s surgically placed into the jawbone to serve as the foundation for the rest of the implant.
- Abutment: The part that protrudes above the gum line and provides a connection point for the prosthetic tooth. It’s typically made of titanium or a similar material.
- Artificial Tooth: The visible restoration that replaced the tooth. It’s most often a dental crown that can be made of porcelain, ceramic, or acrylic resin.
Types of Dental Implants
Endosteal Dental Implants
The most common implant type is an endosteal dental implant. The post is inserted directly into the jawbone and used for patients who have enough bone structure to support it.
There are various dental implant treatments available today, ensuring that every patient gets the care they need for a beautiful smile. However, each dental office offers its own unique options. At our Staten Island practice, we offer endosteal dental implant treatments including, single-tooth implants, implant-supported dentures, and implant-supported bridges.
Single-Tooth Dental Implants
Single-tooth dental implants replace one missing tooth from root to crown. It involves the placement of a titanium implant into the jawbone, which serves as the foundation for a custom-made prosthetic tooth. Single-tooth dental implant treatment provides patients with a permanent solution for missing or damaged teeth.
Implant-supported dentures are removable dentures anchored to the jaw using dental implants. This option provides a more secure fit and eliminates the need for messy adhesives. Implant-supported dentures are also a more stable option than traditional dentures and can improve overall oral health by providing stimulation to the jaw bone.
Implant-supported bridges are an excellent option for replacing multiple teeth. They use a dental bridge that’s anchored to the jaw using dental implants. The bridge is typically made up of two or more artificial teeth that are connected and attached to the implant abutments. The number of posts needed will vary depending on the size of the bridge.
Mini Dental Implants*
Mini dental implants are a smaller version of traditional implants. They’re a less invasive option typically used to replace a single tooth or stabilize a loose denture. They also require less healing time and have a lower cost. However, they may not be suitable for patients with significant bone loss or those needing to replace multiple teeth.
*mini dental implants aren’t offered at our Staten Island practice.
All-on-four dental implants are a full-arch replacement option. This treatment involves placing four dental implants in the jaw and attaching a full arch of replacement teeth to them. This technique can also be less invasive and completed in one day. All-on-four implants are a good option for those who have lower bone density, as it allows for the replacement of a full arch of teeth while using fewer implant posts.
*all-on-four dental implants aren’t offered at our Staten Island practice.
Immediate-Load “Same Day” Dental Implants*
Immediate-load dental implants, also known as same-day implants, are placed in one appointment. With immediate load implants, the implant and prosthetic tooth are placed at the same time, allowing the patient to leave the dental office with a fully functional replacement tooth.
*immediate-load dental implants aren’t offered at our Staten Island practice.
Zygomatic Dental Implants
Zygomatic dental implants are used to replace missing teeth for patients who don’t have enough jawbone density to support a traditional endosteal implant. While zygomatic implants are still in use, they’re less common today and aren’t utilized by our dentists.
Subperiosteal Dental Implants
Subperiosteal dental implants are placed on top of the jawbone but under the gum tissue. Subperiosteal implants are rarely ever used due to modern technological advancements in the field of implant dentistry.
What’s the Best Treatment Option for You?
When determining the best dental implant treatment for you, it’s important to consider your individual dental needs and smile goals. Factors such as the number of missing teeth, the condition of your jawbone, and your budget will all play a role in determining the best option. When weighing your options, the benefits of dental implants and dental implant costs should also be evaluated. Your dentist or oral surgeon can help you evaluate your options and make a recommendation.
If you’re wondering where to start, find out how to find the best dental implant provider for you and your needs. For those located in the Staten Island area, contact our dentists today. With years of experience in implant dentistry, you can rest assured that our dentists will help you find the best treatment option for your oral health needs.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does a missing tooth need to be replaced?
Yes, a missing tooth should be replaced as soon as possible. By not replacing a lost tooth, you can experience:
- Shifting of surrounding teeth: When a tooth is missing, the surrounding teeth may shift to fill the gap. This can lead to misalignment and bite problems.
- Bone loss: The jawbone needs stimulation from the roots of the teeth to maintain its density. When a tooth is missing, the jawbone may shrink, leading to bone loss.
- Increased risk of gum disease: Missing teeth can create space for bacteria to accumulate, increasing the risk of gum disease.
- Difficulty speaking and eating: A missing tooth can make it difficult to speak clearly and chew food properly.
Replacing a missing tooth with a dental implant can help prevent these issues and restore the function and appearance of your smile.
Who is qualified to place dental implants?
Dental implants can be placed by a variety of dental professionals, including:
- Oral and maxillofacial surgeons: Dentists who have completed additional training and education in the surgical placement of dental implants. They have the most extensive training and experience in implant placement and are often considered the most qualified to place them.
- Periodontists: Dentists who specialize in the treatment of gum disease and the placement of dental implants. They have completed additional training in implant placement and have a good understanding of the underlying bone and tissue structure.
- Prosthodontists: Dentists who specialize in the replacement of missing teeth and the restoration of natural teeth. They’re also qualified to place dental implants.
- General dentists: Many general dentists have completed training in implant placement and are qualified to place them.
Remember that certifications and qualifications vary based on the country, state, or region. Some states or countries may have different laws and regulations regarding who’s qualified to place dental implants. It’s always best to check with your dentist to confirm the qualifications of the practitioner you’re considering.
How long do dental implants last?
On average, dental implants can last for more than 20 years. The longevity of your dental implant depends on various factors, including your oral hygiene routine, the quality of the implant, and the skill of your surgeon.
Will dental implants look natural?
Yes, dental implants will look and act like natural teeth. They’re designed to blend in with your surrounding smile and can be customized to match the shape, size, and color of your natural teeth.
Can dental implants replace multiple teeth?
Yes, dental implants can replace multiple missing teeth at once. Between an implant-retained bridge, All-on-4 dental implants, and implant-supported dentures, there are various options for patients missing multiple teeth. Consult with your dentist, and they’ll discuss the best treatment option for your needs.
Learn More About Your Dental Implants Options Today
Ready to find out if a dental implant treatment is exactly what your smile needs? To learn more about your dental implant treatment options, contact your local dentist today. If you happen to live in the Staten Island, NY, area, contact our dentists today to schedule an appointment and see how we can improve your oral health.
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