What is a dental implant?
A dental implant is an artificial dental root made of pure titanium, entirely biocompatible. It is placed in the area of the lost tooth and its purpose is to hold the artificial prosthetic tooth. The prosthetic tooth (or teeth) is not removable, which allows the patient to talk and eat easily and feel it as their own.
Who is a candidate for Implants?
Anyone who is missing one or several teeth is a candidate for implants. To determine if implants are right for you, a consultation with our specialized dentists is needed. During this appointment, Smile House’s dental professional will thoroughly examine your teeth and gums and evaluate bone density and quantity. This may involve X-rays and computer tomography scans (CT scans) to ensure there is sufficient bone structure for placing the implant(s), and to determine exactly where they should be placed.
1. Placement of the dental implant
– The surgeon begins by exposing the jawbone by making an incision in the gum where the dental implant will be placed.
– The surgeon then prepares a small hole in the bone of the jaw using surgical instruments, while making sure not to affect neighboring nerves and sinuses.
– Subsequently, the dental implant is placed into the site, at the same level as the bone under the gums.
– Then, a period typically ranging from three to six months is necessary for the jawbone to fuse with the implant (osseointegration). During this period, the implant attaches also to the gums that are completing their healing process.
2. Placing the abutment
Once the surgeon has confirmed that the osseointegration is complete, an abutment (the piece where the crown will eventually attach) is placed on each dental implant. The surgeon must first reopen your gum to expose the dental implant
3. Artificial teeth
- Once the healing and osseointegration process is complete, the restorative dentist installs the final artificial prosthesis (crown, bridge or denture) on the abutment of the dental implant.
- The prosthesis is made in the laboratory, using dental models and pictures of the patient.
- Several visits to the restorative dentist may be required to get a perfect fit of the final prosthesis on the abutment.
- Depending on the method used by the surgeon, a temporary prosthesis can sometimes be attached to the implant at the same time as the implant and the abutment are placed. A close cooperation between the surgeon and the restorative dentist is required to coordinate the temporary prosthesis and implant surgery.
- This last stage of the treatment enables the patient to regain normal chewing function as well as a better facial aesthetic.