Dental Implant Placement
You can have missing teeth rebuilt following the placement of a dental implant. This is different from other tooth restorations because it’s about more than a tooth, it begins with the jawbone. Having a tooth rebuilt is better for your bone health and your oral health. Our team at Alexandra Garcia, DDS, MS can help you have a healthier, beautiful smile.
Tooth loss is problematic and ignoring it will only allow the problem to grow. Missing teeth causes:
||Changes in How You Chew: Patients with missing teeth will alter how they chew their food. They may chew on the other side, or omit otherwise typical foods from their diet altogether. Chewing primarily on one side of your mouth will cause uneven wear. Altering your diet can cause negative effects on your health.
||Changes to Your Facial Shape: What we often think of as an older facial appearance is actually the loss of bone structure. Missing teeth leads to a loss of bone as it atrophies causing a sunken, smaller, and older appearance.
We can improve both your function and your appearance with the placement of a dental implant. The process of placing dental implants can vary depending on how many implants are being placed and the prosthetic being used, we recommend scheduling a consultation to discuss your specific treatment plan.
Most dental implant treatment plans begin with increasing the size and bulk of the bone that will be supporting the implant. When a tooth is lost, the bone responds immediately with sorption. This means that the bone cells pull back the resources to keep that part of bone refreshed because it deems the area to no longer be needed. Bone is continuously refreshing and will shrink in areas that are not being worked. We can help the bone renew with a simple bone graft procedure.
Bone Graft Before Implant Placement
A bone graft is completed in our office often with just a local anesthetic. Though a bone graft sounds like an intimidating process, we accomplish it by simply adding tiny bone fragments to your bone at the location that we want bone to grow. We obtain these fragments from either a different area of your body, often the chin, or we can use synthetic bone or donated bone material. The fragments are placed in your bone and then the tissue is sutured closed. Soft tissue will heal within a few days, but it can take months for new bone tissue to grow.
The Placement of Your Dental Implant
With the bone bulked up, we now have a good place to insert the implant. The placement of a dental implant is often completed in our office with a local anesthetic, though we also offer various conscious sedation options if needed. We begin with ensuring your comfort.
Placing the implant involves opening the tissue to expose the bone material. We then use a dental drill to create a space in the bone and then embed the implant into the bone. The implant is designed with threads, similar to a screw, to capture a lot of bone material and increase the surface area making contact with the bone. The soft tissue is then sutured closed. As the bone heals from surgery, it will grow up and around the implanted device fusing the two firmly together. Once the implant is permanently secured, we can then top the implant with a tooth prosthetic including a dental crown, bridge, or denture.
For more information on dental implants, tooth implants, the All-on-4® Treatment Concept, or more, contact our Houston office at (346) 250-2930.