“What are Dental Implants … and How Do They Work?”

Today implants are a common procedure. Implants are used to replace one or more missing teeth, to support non-removable permanent bridges for multiple teeth, or to better support a full or partial denture with clasps or retention bars. Because they also help maintain bone, they can help prevent additional tooth loss and a sunken facial appearance.

Three separate pieces are involved: the implant (which fuses to your bone), an abutment that screws on the implant, and a crown that is cemented or screwed on the abutment.

Once the implant, made from titanium, is surgically placed in the bone, it takes about four months for it to become integrated into the jaw. A life-like ceramic porcelain tooth restoration is then matched to the original tooth color and attached to the implant abutment. These feel more natural than conventional replacement bridges or dentures.

To be a candidate for implants, you must be reasonably healthy and have enough bone to support the implants. If you do not have adequate bone, then there are other options, which can be discussed at a consultation.

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