If you’re missing a tooth you might think your only option for replacement is a bridge or dentures. Fortunately, the team at Estudillo Oral Surgery located in San Leandro, California, provides dental implant procedures to replace your missing tooth. Our provider is an expert in implantology and offers the tooth replacement option you are looking for. Call the office today or request an appointment online.
WHAT ARE DENTAL IMPLANTS?
Dental implants are a revolutionary tooth replacement option. Prior to dental implants, your only options for replacing teeth were bridges or dentures. The problem with these options is that they sometimes slip around your mouth and need to be replaced every few years. However, following optimal oral care, dental implants can last a lifetime.
ARE DENTAL IMPLANTS WORTH IT?
There are a number of advantages to having dental implants over other prosthetic tooth options. Unlike other options, dental implants mimic natural teeth, so you can continue enjoying the benefits.
Firstly, there are great advantages to your oral health. Normally, when you are missing a tooth, the bone density in your jaw can diminish. This is because the jaw bone needs stimulation from the tooth and its root to promote and replace old bone cells. Prosthetic options such as bridges and dentures don’t provide this simulation and your jaw bone can weaken and reduce in size. This can cause existing teeth to move out of place or even fall out. Dental implants provide the needed stimulation contributing to good jaw bone strength.
Looking after your dental implants is easy too. There are no special cleaning routines or sticky glues to deal with. Once they are in, you just need to brush your teeth and floss as normal. Though they won’t decay like normal teeth, regular cleaning is important in caring for the health of your gums.
Another benefit dental implants have over dentures is that they provide greater comfort. They won’t slip around and you can eat all the foods you ate when you had your natural teeth without fear of them breaking or falling out. Dental implants also look great, restoring your smile with full confidence.
WHO IS A GOOD CANDIDATE FOR DENTAL IMPLANTS?
If you have generally good overall oral health and don’t smoke you are likely a good candidate for dental implants. You just need to have enough strength in your jawbone to support them.
When you arrive for your dental implant consultation, your provider will take panoramic X-rays of your mouth and jaw. If your jawbone is deemed dense enough to support the implants you can move forward in the process.
If your jaw doesn’t have the strength, you aren’t out of luck. Your surgeon can perform a bone grafting procedure to add strength and encourage growth in your jaw.
WHAT IS THE PROCESS OF GETTING DENTAL IMPLANTS?
It takes a few months to a year to complete the dental implant process. That might seem like a long time, but the benefits of dental implants are well worth the wait. And once the implant is placed, it can last a lifetime.
Once your jaw is deemed strong enough to support the implant, your surgeon will begin the process. First, a small titanium threaded rod is drilled into your jawbone followed with a cover screw that will only be placed temporarily until your final step. Once secured, your surgeon will sew your gums shut with dissolvable sutures.
A follow-up appointment will be scheduled a week after your implant surgery procedure to ensure that the area is healing properly. It can take anywhere from three to six months for your implant to fuse firmly into your jawbone. Once the implant is secured, you will return to the Estudillo Oral Surgery office for the final step. The cover screw will be replaced with a healing abutment for your restorative dentist to place a tooth that will be secured to your implant. A crown is typically used for one tooth or an implant-supported bridge or dentures for multiple teeth.