Single Tooth Replacement
The best solution for replacing a missing tooth is a dental implant. A dental implant is either a ceramic or metal screw that is fused to the jawbone. An artificial tooth is then attached to the screw to give the illusion of a natural tooth.
If you decide that a dental implant is not right for you, you can also get a tooth-supported fixed bridge, a removable partial denture, or a resin-bonded bridge.
Why Get A Dental Implant
The benefits of choosing an implant restoration far out-weigh the negatives. Implants are permanent, they prevent bone loss, and are aesthetically pleasing. An implant functions almost exactly as a natural tooth would. Some patients report not being able to distinguish the difference. More importantly, restorations will not negatively impact the health of adjacent teeth or gum tissue, and if cared for properly, will last you upwards of thirty years.
What Is A Dental Implant
A dental implant is either a ceramic or metal screw or post that is secured to the jaw. The term restoration refers to the crown or artificial tooth that is then attached to an abutment, which connects the restoration to the implant.
Understanding the Dental Implant Process
The implant restoration process can be complicated and lengthy, depending upon the patient and their pre-existing oral health. Before you begin the process, Dr. Flint will examine you, take x-rays, and determine if implant restoration is right for you. If you are eligible, Dr. Flint will assess whether or not enough bone mass is available for the implant to fuse itself to in 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 you do not exhibit adequate bone mass than you will have to undergo a bone grafting procedure.
After you have fully recovered, we will surgically secure the implant post into the jaw, and attach a metal abutment to the implant. You will again be sent home to heal. You will return once the inflammation in the gums from surgery has dissipated, and the implant has fully fused to the bone. Impressions will be taken of your mouth and sent to a lab where your customized artificial tooth will be built. When the lab is done, Dr. Flint will attach the restoration to the metal abutment.
The whole process can take upwards of a year, but the results are exceptional!