WHAT IS A DENTAL IMPLANT?
Dental implants replicate the appearance and function of your original teeth. In the past, creating normal-looking teeth was hard to accomplish using dentures, bridge replacements and other dental procedures. However, dental implants have helped solve that problem and are an effective alternative if you’re looking to perfect your smile.
Stated simply, a dental implant is a titanium artificial root surgically implanted and secured to the jawbone where it acts the way your root structure would for your natural tooth. Once the implant is firmly attached, it can hold a crown, bridge or over-denture in place much as the original root would have done.
UNDERSTANDING THE IMPLANT PROCESS
Please understand, the implant restoration process can be complicated and lengthy, depending on the patient and their general oral health, and is not an “instant fix.” First, Dr. Silva will examine your teeth, take 3-dimensional x-rays and determine if restoration is right for you. If you’re eligible, he’ll assess whether enough bone mass is available for the implant to fuse to the jawbone, a process called Osseointegration.
When we lose our teeth, our jawbone recedes, which can eventually lead to facial collapse. Implant restoration is the only solution that prevents recession of the jawbone. If Dr. Silva’s examination shows that you do not have adequate bone mass for the implant procedure, you will first have to undergo a bone grafting procedure.
After you’ve fully healed, we’ll surgically secure the implant post to the jaw and attach a metal abutment to the implant. Again, you’ll be sent home to heal and will return once the swelling in the gums has dissipated and the implant has fully fused to the bone.
Finally, a digital scan will be taken of your mouth and sent to a lab where your customized artificial tooth, or teeth, will be built. When the lab is done, Dr. Silva will attach the restoration to the abutment, and we’ll be done! Your implant should last about 30 years.
The entire process can take several months, but we’re confident that you’ll be satisfied with your new smile.
There’s no reason to delay. Email or call us today at 314.878.9808 to schedule your initial consultation and let us give you that smile you’ve always wanted.