The loss of even one tooth can seriously impact both the function of your bite and your confidence in your appearance. Adjacent teeth can be compromised by the gap left by a missing tooth, shifting position or becoming more vulnerable to chips and cracking. Dental implants offer a permanent and proven solution to missing teeth. The implant process involves attaching a custom-made, artificial tooth to an anchor post surgically implanted in the jawbone. This post integrates into the bone, providing a firm anchor on which natural-looking, custom-made restorations can be placed. A dental implant is a “root” device, usually made of titanium, used in dentistry to support restorations that resemble a tooth or group of teeth to replace missing teeth. Virtually all dental implants placed today are root-form endosseous implants, i.e., they appear similar to an actual tooth root and are placed within the bone. Dental implants can be used to support a number of dental prostheses, including crowns, implant-supported bridges or dentures.
Before dental implant surgery, bone grafting is sometimes necessary to supplement the bone mass of patient’s jaw so that the implants can be anchored firmly.
When is Bone Grafting Necessary?
Loss of bone volume can be caused by a variety of factors, including infection, trauma, and periodontal (gum) disease. If a patient lost a tooth long ago and is just now looking into dental implant surgery, it’s likely that the bone around the lost tooth has degenerated to some degree and needs to be augmented before it can support an implant.
A patient’s need for bone grafting may become apparent at the time of their pre-surgery X-ray. Sometimes, inadequate bone volume is not discovered until the dentist actually begins dental implant surgery. In this case the dental implant procedure will be halted and bone grafting will take place, after the patient has agreed to the procedure.
How long after bone grafting can I get my dental implant?
It takes several months for the grafted material to fuse with your existing bone. Therefore, dentists typically wait 4 to 6 months to place dental implants after the bone grafting procedure. After your dental bone grafting procedure, our dentists will monitor your healing and keep you updated on when the dental implants can likely be placed.
Is a surgical procedure performed by an appropriately trained dentist or dental specialist to increase the amount of bone in the posterior maxilla, or upper jawbone. The maxillary sinus is a hollow chamber, which lies above the upper posterior teeth (molars and premolars). It has no important biologic function and serves merely as one of many chambers in which air circulates and is humidified. The maxillary sinus increases in size and volume as one ages. When the teeth beneath it are lost, the sinus may increase even further in size, occupying most of the area where the teeth had been. Often, there is not enough bone remaining in these areas in order to place dental implants. Current research shows a remarkable implant survival rate of over 92% in these grafted sinus areas – the same success rate as seen in non-grafted sites. There are two different methods by which grafts are placed into the maxillary sinus: If the area to be grafted is relatively small and the anatomy of the sinus is favorable, a minimally invasive localized procedure is performed in which the graft material is advanced into the sinus by an instrument through a small opening made through the gums and bone in the site of the missing tooth. This is called an Osteotome Sinus Lift procedure For larger areas, a Lateral Window Sinus Lift procedure can be performed. In this procedure, a “window” is made through the bone on the side of the sinus in the area above the missing teeth and the graft material is placed directly into the sinus space. These two predictable procedures provide an alternative to dentures for the replacement of the back teeth. While there may be a number of reasons for wanting a greater volume of bone in the posterior maxilla, the most common reason in contemporary dental treatment planning is to prepare the site for the future placement of dental implants.
Sometimes called either porcelain veneers or dental porcelain laminates, dental veneers are ultra-thin custom-made shells of tooth-colored ceramic materials that are bonded to the front of teeth in order to cover worn tooth enamel, teeth that are discolored, cracked or chipped and teeth that have uneven spacing, are out of alignment or worn down. Dental veneers look natural, are stain resistant and can make dark teeth appear whiter. They give you an attractive, natural smile by creating teeth that are bright, white, aligned and shapely. Dental veneers are a more conservative alternative to dental crowns and, other than normal brushing and flossing, no special care is required.
Made to look like your own tooth, a crown is a dental restoration used to rebuild decayed or broken teeth that are not candidates for fillings. Also known as caps, crowns encase the entire visible surface of the teeth that have been reshaped (prepared) by the dentist. The crown is held onto the tooth by strong permanent cement. A crown can protect a fractured tooth and preserve the functionality of a damaged tooth by restoring its shape and strength. A crown may also be used simply to improve the cosmetic appearance of a tooth.