Dental Implant Restorations
When you open your mouth to share your smile with your friends and family, what else are you showing them? Is it your quick wit, your great sense of humor, or is it that unsightly gap between your teeth where you lost a tooth due to infection, decay, or injury?
Losing a tooth can not only make you feel shame and embarrassment about the unattractive gaping space it left behind; it can also negatively impact your quality of life. Tooth loss can also lead to pain when you try to eat, a weakened bite force, and even more tooth loss later on down the road. When we here at Sharokina Eshaghi, DMD meet a patient who has lost a tooth, we like to educate them about the many benefits of dental implants to help them restore their smile to all of its beautiful splendor.
What are Dental Implants and What Happens During Implant Surgery?
Dental implants are a type of permanent restoration that we can provide to our patients after they have lost a tooth. Unlike bridges, partials, or dentures, getting a dental implant does require minor outpatient surgery to place it directly into the jawbone. It has an extremely high success rate (at 98 percent) and is quite safe, and if the patient takes good care of it, it can last them the rest of their life.
A dental implant is made up of three main parts. The first part of it is the screw, which is made out of titanium. We use titanium because the body does not reject this metal. Instead, your bone will start to build up over it, making the implant strong and sturdy in your mouth. This process of bone fusing to titanium is called osseointegration. The titanium screw attaches to the abutment, which is the part of the implant that acts as a connector from the screw to the restoration.
The final part of a dental implant is the restoration itself, also known as the crown. The crown is the piece of the implant that resembles a tooth, and it is often made of porcelain. Porcelain is a great choice for the crown because it is not brittle and is not prone to breaking or chipping, and it can be dyed to match your surrounding teeth.
Getting a dental implant placed does require anesthesia. We typically use a combination of local anesthesia (such as lidocaine) and intravenous (IV) anesthesia. This helps to ensure you are relaxed and do not experience any discomfort during the procedure. We will start by placing an incision into the gums directly over the jawbone where we will place the implant. This exposes the jawbone and allows us to drill into it carefully. We will then attach the implant to the jaw. The surgical site will be closed with sutures. Over the next few months, as you heal, osseointegration will occur. Once your implant site is healed, we are then able to attach the abutment and the restoration, giving you a beautiful and natural looking smile.
Want To Learn More?
If you are interested in learning more about dental implants, or you would like to schedule an appointment with us to determine if you are a good candidate for them, please give us here at Sharokina Eshaghi, DMD a call at (209) 248-0100 today!