Dental implants are a fantastic solution to missing teeth and can allow you to return to normality both in terms of feel and appearance and also in terms of function. At Dental Partners of Boston, we have doctors who are well-trained and experienced at placing dental implants.
How Do Dental Implants Work?
Dental implants work by replacing the root of a tooth with a small screw-like metal implant, that then becomes bonded with your jaw.
Once this implant has been bonded, an artificial tooth – or “crown” – is fitted.
With a dental implant, the tooth is remarkably stable and performs just like any other tooth in your mouth. It doesn’t get removed for cleaning, and you won’t be left feeling like there’s a foreign object in your mouth, either.
Why Are Dental Implants the Best Solution for Missing Teeth?
Dental implants are the best solution for missing teeth, first and foremost, because of how natural they are in terms of feel, appearance, and performance.
Many older approaches – such as dentures – involve complex cleaning processes, and have often required significant changes to the lifestyles of the individuals involved.
Dental implants, by contrast, allow you to get on with your life just as you would with your natural teeth. Once the healing process is complete, you can expect to quickly forget about the fact that you have implants in at all.
What Should You Expect from the Process?
Here’s a straightforward rundown of the process of having dental implants fitted.
The first step of the process is an initial consultation with your implant dentist, where you will discuss the various options available and will have impressions and x-rays of your mouth taken, as required.
Dental implant placement
Following your initial consultation, you will have the implant itself fitted in your jaw where your missing tooth would be.
This process is like any other dental surgery, in that it will be performed under anesthetic, and will require some healing and may cause a bit of swelling and bleeding. However, it’s worth keeping in mind that patients frequently find the process to be less painful than they imagined it would be.
Before the process can proceed further, the main part of the implant has to fuse with your jawbone. This happens as a natural part of the healing process and results in a firm base for the tooth.
This process can take up to a few months but is unlikely to interfere much with your everyday life – although you will be on a soft food diet for the first few weeks.
Once the implant has bonded with your jaw, a small connecting element – called an abutment – will be attached to the implant just above the gum line. Your custom-made tooth will later be attached to this abutment.
Customization and attachment of new teeth
Once the abutments have been fitted, custom-made and lifelike teeth will be installed in place, based partly on molds taken from your existing teeth.
When the custom-made teeth have been attached, they will look, feel, and perform just like your real teeth would.
Dental implants don’t decay like real teeth, but they do still require the same cleaning routine, along with regular checkups.
Once the implants have healed and settled, these checkups will be essentially the same as any other dental checkup would – and will tend to occur with the same frequency, too. Give us a call today to schedule a consultation with one of our exceptional doctors to discuss your dental implant options today.