Dental Implants

When people think about losing one or more teeth, solutions like dental bridges and dentures typically come to mind. But in recent years, a third option has become available: dental implants. For most people, a dental implant is a superior choice because it offers the look, feel, and function of a natural tooth. If you care for an implant properly, it can be expected to last for a lifetime.

What is a dental implant?

A dental implant is an artificially created structure designed to replace a missing tooth.

Each implant consists of three parts: a metal post, an abutment and a dental crown.

What are the benefits of getting a dental implant?

A dental implant is the superior choice for replacing one or more missing teeth for many patients. Although the procedure is not for everyone, it offers patients the ability to have an almost exact match for an original tooth in terms of both form and function.

Dental Implants:

  • Look, feel, and function just like natural teeth
  • Offer durability and a lifespan that should last for the rest of the patient’s life
  • Anchored firmly within the jawbone itself so that it will not slip or become loose in the mouth

How are dental implants placed?

The process of receiving a dental implant typically requires a few dental appointments. The first is where you take part in a consultation with your dentist to determine if the procedure is right for you.

At your first surgical appointment, which usually quickly follows the consultation, your dentist will place a titanium metal post into your jawbone. In most cases, you would wait anywhere from four to six months to recover and give your jawbone time to fuse around the implanted post.

At your second appointment, your dentist will place an abutment over the metal post. This part of the implant allows for the connection of an eventual dental crown.

At your third surgical appointment, which normally occurs around three weeks after your abutment is placed, your dentist will cap the entire structure with a dental crown to serve as a biting and chewing surface.

What is bone grafting?

In some cases, such as when a patient has gone a long time without addressing a missing tooth, bone

loss will occur at the site of the original tooth. Since a dental implant needs solid bone for proper anchoring, such a patient would need a bone graft to shore up the area so that it can eventually receive a dental implant.

After I receive my new dental implant, how should I care for it?

No different than any of your other teeth. But keep in mind that although the implanted structure is virtually indestructible within your mouth, your gums and jawbone are not. As with your natural teeth, an implant can be undermined by gum disease. So be sure to brush and floss all of your teeth and dental implants so that you keep them for the rest of your life.

Learn More

Schedule a dental implant consultation with our dentist today! Call or request an appointment online.

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If you have questions about Galleria Dental Arts, get in touch with our friendly team today at (703) 368-9777.