Your parents may have grown up with dentures, but now you have a great new option: dental implants. Unlike dentures, dental implants won't slip and slide or make noise. Dental implants are false teeth that look exactly like your own teeth, but don’t decay like your own teeth. Dental implants can replace one tooth or several.
Before a dental implant placement, you’ll likely need to have X-rays and 3D images taken to make sure you have enough jawbone to hold the implant, which is literally screwed into the bone. If your jawbone isn't thick enough or is too soft, then you may need a bone graft done before getting a dental implant.
A bone graft creates a strong area for the implant. Once that issue is taken care of, you will be ready for dental implant placement, which is an outpatient treatment that is performed in stages.
For the first stage, an oral surgeon will cut open your gum and drill a hole into the jawbone where the dental implant metal post will be placed. The oral surgeon will give you a painkiller so you should not feel much, if any, pain. The metal implant post will be the new “root” for your future new “tooth” (the implant).
After the metal implant post is put in, you can have a temporary false tooth placed on top while the implant post unites with your jawbone (osseointegration). This process can take several months.
In the second stage, an oral surgeon will attach an abutment to the dental implant metal post. Sometimes, the abutment is attached to the dental implant metal post in the first stage. Either way, the abutment will stick up, just above the gumline, to hold the future implant.
The third stage usually happens about 2-3 weeks later to give your gums time to heal. Your dentist will make an impression of your mouth and nearby teeth to order to make an artificial tooth that fits perfectly in your mouth.
In the fourth stage, the implant (artificial tooth) is tightly screwed into the abutment by a dentist. Your new implant should fit in with your other teeth and match them in size and color.
If you’re missing a tooth or teeth, remember, you do have options. Please contact Dr. Molayem to learn more about dental implant placement and how it can help you have a great smile. Start your new life today!
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