The 1-2-3 Of Dental Implants

Posted on Feb 05, 2016 by William J. Claiborne, DDS MS

As dental implants become more mainstream in tooth replacement, people are beginning to better understand what they are, and aren’t. However, for some, there are still some misconceptions. I thought I’d give a basic outline of what they are and how they work.

  1.  Dental Implants are actually replacements for tooth roots. The implanted portion is placed in your jaw bone where a tooth root was once held.
  2. The implant is not the tooth. It will help to hold the tooth (referred to as the ‘restoration’) but its primary function is to serve as the anchor for an attached tooth. By being placed in the jaw bone, just as natural tooth roots, the implant can support the replacement with a firm foundation for optimal stability.
  3. The implant becomes anchored in the jaw bone through a process known as ‘osseo-integration.’ The word ‘osseo’ refers to bone, and the integration process is like a rope tied around a tree branch. In time, the branch grows around the rope. Osseo-integration is like this but occurs at a much more rapid pace.
  4. Once the implant has become secured by the bone, a post is inserted into the center of the implant. The replacement tooth (or teeth) is attached to this post. You are then ready to enjoy a tooth that looks, feels and functions like the natural tooth once positioned there.
  5. An implant is not always necessary for each missing tooth. In some instances, one implant can hold two or a bridge of teeth. Several strategically-placed implants can also support a full arch of teeth in many cases.
  6. Implants CAN fail. If infection sets in and reaches the implanted portion, the implant may need to be removed so treatment can resolve the problem. Clenching or grinding teeth can also lead to implant failure. Smoking complicates and delays the healing process and is also a known contributor to implant failure.
  7. A dental implant is designed to last your lifetime. Made from titanium, this metal bonds to living bone successfully. As a matter of fact, dental implants have one of the highest success rates of any implant-in-bone procedures.
  8. Dental implants do not decay. They will not need root canals. And, with proper care, they’ll last as long as you’re alive.
  9. Dental implants restore the ability to eat with stability, chew comfortably, laugh and speak with confidence and even sneeze without worry!

There are many types of implants, each designed to accommodate specific needs. As a Periodontist, I have extensive and specialized training in the diagnosis and placement of the implant that will work best for you.

Call 828-274-9440 to arrange a consultation. Together, we’ll discuss treatment that will achieve your needs and goals as well as the process and anticipated costs.

Recent Posts