Lady Lake Dental Implants
Traditionally, patients in need of tooth replacement expected to receive solutions that only restored the top half of their lost tooth. These types of replacement teeth offered patients significantly improved appearance and minimally restored function, but this repair came at a cost for remaining healthy oral structures. Dental implants are custom designed titanium posts that mimic the root structures of lost teeth providing a solid foundation for a replacement tooth without placing unnecessary strain on healthy dental structures. If you’re interested in finding out whether dental implants are the right solution to replace your missing teeth, contact our team at New Frontier Oral Surgery to schedule a dental implant consultation. Before your consultation, we invite you to consider the following commonly asked dental implant questions.
What Exactly is a Dental Implant?
Dental implants are small posts that resemble a screw. We typically use titanium as this material is highly biocompatible, and has been proven to create the most natural bond with supportive gum and alveolar bone tissue. In fact, research into the bonding process of titanium with bone showed that this metal completely fuses with natural tissue. We then insert attachments known as abutments that connect replacement teeth to the dental implant mimicking the natural supportive structure of the root systems of teeth.
How are Implants Placed?
The dental implant placement process will vary depending on the number and location of missing teeth, but in most cases, there are two main surgical components. First is the actual placement of the dental implant post below the gum line. We’ll make a small incision. Then, the dentist inserts the implant post below the gum line, and covers it with a protective cap. Over the course of three to six months, the implant post fuses with the jawbone and creates a stable, natural support for the replacement tooth or teeth. In most cases, patients receive a temporary prosthetic to wear until the process is complete.
About midway through the healing process, patients exchange their healing cap for a healing abutment. This temporary attachment piece makes sure that the gum tissue heals around the post in the right shape to accommodate the restoration. Following these two procedures, patients simply need to come in to place their permanent abutment and dental restoration.
Do I Need Tooth Extraction or Bone Grafting?
In some situations, we may need to extract one or more teeth that are damaged or weakened prior to placing implants. We want patients to keep any healthy teeth, but sometimes they cannot be preserved. In most cases, we’re able to extract teeth on the same day that we place implants, but we schedule these procedures to ensure patient safety and minimize healing time.
Patients who would like to receive dental implant supported tooth replacement may need to undergo a preparatory procedure known as bone grafting in order to ensure there is adequate jawbone density to successfully support the implant post. There are many types of bone grafting procedures, but the technique remains the same. Using bone harvested from other areas of the jaw or body, bone from a tissue bank, or synthetic bone material, the doctor attaches the bone to the area where the implant is to be placed. Over the course of a few weeks or months, the additional bone fuses with the existing bone to offer increased density. Bone grafting procedures make it possible for more patients than ever before to receive dental implant supported tooth replacement.
Who Places and Restores my Implants?
Dr. Mark Karpovck surgically places the dental implants and abutments. Some patients prefer to return to their own general dental office for the restoration process. Our team is happy to partner with these general dentistry practices, and we are also happy to create custom dental crowns, bridges, and overdentures. Dr. Karpovck has performed countless dental implant placement and restoration procedures, and has the advanced training to offer safe, predictable results for those patients he treats.
What Types of Tooth Replacement Options do I Have?
Dental implants are the most versatile solution to replacing lost teeth, and they can be positioned to support any type of dental restoration including:
- Single tooth – one dental implant is attached to a single dental crown
- Two to four consecutive teeth – for two consecutive teeth, two crowns fused together can usually be supported by one dental implant, but for three or four consecutive teeth, we will place a dental implant at either end of the fixed bridge (series of connected dental crowns)
- Multiple teeth – more extensive tooth loss may require a removable or fixed partial denture be connected to three or more dental implants strategically placed to provide optimal support
- Full arch – patients missing all of the teeth along an arch have three options
o Removable dentures – these full arch prosthetics connect a gum colored base to metal balls or bars attached to implants allowing patients to remove their denture
o Fixed dentures – these dentures are connected directly to the implants and can only be removed by a dentist
o Bridges – a series of fixed bridges connected directly to dental implants without the base between
What are the Benefits of Dental Implant Tooth Replacement?
- More natural as they replace the entire tooth roots and crowns
- Improved stability allowing patients, especially those with extensive tooth loss, to enjoy a more varied diet
- More conservative as surrounding teeth and supportive structures are not damaged to support the replacement tooth or teeth
- Improved self-confidence as you no longer need to worry about replacement teeth being loose or slipping
Am I Candidate for Dental Implants?
No treatment is right for every patient, but with the innovations in dental implant techniques, materials, and technologies, more patients than ever are able to successfully replace teeth with dental implants. We’ll evaluate your success rate by reviewing your oral health, the density of your jawbone, and your past health and surgical history. When we have a complete picture of your health, we’ll work with you to decide whether implants are the best option to replace your lost teeth.