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R e s t o r i n g
N a t u r a l l y,
If you have experienced tooth loss, you are not alone. According to the American Dental Association, more than 20 million people in the United States are missing all of their natural teeth, and more than 100 million are missing from 11 to 15 teeth. In 1997, dental professionals performed more than 500,000 dental implant procedures worldwide.
Dental Implants offer a permanent solution to missing teeth. For over 30 years, dental implants have brought naturally beautiful, confident smiles to patients. A dental implant is a small titanium screw or cylinder which is surgically placed in the upper or lower jawbone. The implant replaces the root of the missing tooth, providing . an anchor for your new tooth/teeth. Many patients choose dental implants over other procedures, because the result is a natural appearance which is permanent.
another way I can have a tooth replaced other than a bridge?
Yes. Dental implants can provide artificial teeth that look natural and feel secure. Dental implants can also be used to attach full or partial dentures. Implants, however, are not an option for everyone. Because implants require surgery, patients must be in good health, have healthy gums, have adequate bone to support the implant and be committed to meticulous oral hygiene and regular dental visits. If you are considering implants, a thorough evaluation by your dentist will help determine if you would be a good candidate.
What is involved in placing implants?First, surgery is performed to place the anchor. Surgery can take up to several hours, and up to six months may be required for the bone to grow around the anchor and firmly hold it in place. Some implants require a second surgery in which a post is attached to connect the anchor to the replacement teeth. With other implants, the anchor and post are already attached and are placed at the same time.
After the gums have had several weeks to heal, the next step is begun. The artificial teeth are made and fitted to the post portion of the anchor. Because several fittings may be required, this step can take one to two months to complete.
Implant surgery can be done either in a dental office or in a hospital, depending upon a number of factors. A local or general anesthetic may be used. Usually pain medications and, when necessary, antibiotics are prescribed. Your dentist will give you instructions on diet and oral hygiene.