A dental implant acts as a replacement for a missing tooth. These tooth posts are made of metal and are replaced with an artificial tooth that looks and functions exactly like your natural tooth. Dental implant surgery is the best alternative to dentures or bridgework that may not fit well. Dental implants are the most feasible alternative if your natural tooth roots don't allow dentures or bridges.
Purpose of a Dental Implant
A dental implant replaces the root of a missing natural tooth lost to decay, gum disease, or an injury. A dental implant is the best treatment option for you if you:
- Have missing tooth/teeth
- Have a fully grown jawbone
- Have healthy tissues and appropriate bone to secure implant
- Are seeking an alternative to dentures
Dental Implants Procedure
Dental implant surgery is performed in various steps. It usually depends on the type of implant and the health of your jawbone.
- Initial Evaluation
Our oral surgeon will first do a comprehensive examination of your dental condition to suggest the best dental implant procedure. The initial assessment includes:
- Taking digital impressions of the mouth
- Matching the color to make the implant look completely natural
- Tooth Extraction
If a remnant tooth needs to be replaced, our dentist will first remove it before implant insertion. It doesn't take too long to remove the tooth. Our dentist uses local anesthesia to numb your oral tissues and prevent pain or discomfort.
- Inserting the Implant
In general, there are two types of implants that are either inserted under the gumline or into your jawbone. If your jawbone is dense and strong, it can better protect the implant, and there is no need to add a bone graft. We will extract healthy bone tissues from a different part of the body, such as the femur, and graft them to the receded region of the jawbone.
In case you have a graft, we will let the bone heal first before adding the implant. After the bone heals, our surgeon will place the implant in your jawbone. The jawbone will then grow around the implant, making it part of your natural gum line. This procedure usually varies for individuals and can take anywhere between 3 to 9 months.
- Abutment Placement
Once the implant becomes stable, our surgeon will position an abutment on top of it that will connect the implant to your dental crown. The abutment is tightened well to keep it in place. We will also place a healing cap to keep the bone and tissue from growing over the abutment.
- Adding the Permanent Crown
Once your gums heal completely, our dentist will add a permanent crown on it and secure it firmly using dental adhesives. We will take a bite test to ensure your natural bite isn't affected and polish the crown as required.
Please reach out to our dental practice in Salida, CA, to have a consultation with our dentists. Please call us at (209) 732-1123 or schedule an online consultation, and we'll guide you further.