Dentistry has made many attempts to restore and replace missing teeth. Removable partial and complete dentures are of the earliest attempts. Although practical for the time but proved to be difficult for patients to get used, while they never feel and function like natural teeth. Additionally, teeth loss has been associated with degeneration of the maxilla and mandible (bone loss) that occurs upon removal of teeth. This process although slow, can result in irreversible damage to jawbone. All the mentioned problems have been solved with modern implant dentistry.
Dental implants have been around for decades and have evolved greatly. Material used in dental implants have not changed, however, surgical technique, implant design, prosthesis design has changed immensely over the past decades. Today’s dental implants are safe, and effective treatment options, with high success rate. They are comfortable in the mouth, appear natural, feel and function like natural teeth.
Before implant surgery
Process of implant at Dental Atelier begins with a comprehensive analysis of patient’s medical history. Because implant placement is a surgical procedure, all necessary precautions must be taken to reduce the chance for intra-operative and or post-operative complications. Additionally, select medical and dental conditions make implant placement unfavorable that. Therefore they must be identified and dealt with prior to implant placement. For example, uncontrolled diabetes is a contraindication to implant placement due to slowed rate of healing in diabetic patients. That is not to say we cannot place implants on diabetic patients. Other factors include:
- Active uncontrolled periodontal disease
- Bleeding disorders
- Recent history of heart problem or stroke
Implants placement surgery is a meticulous process that involved thorough radiographic examination of the surgery site, and bone density to select the correct height and diameter of the implant to be used. In some cases, we must create, or repair bone height and density via additional surgical procedures that will most commonly be done at the same time as the implant surgery itself.
After implant placement
Post implant surgery recovery period is very important to success rate of the implant surgery. Implants become most unstable two weeks post placement. At the end of implant surgery, patients are sent home with antibiotics, and pain medication. Patients are refrained from chewing on the side of implant surgery for up to 72 hours, followed by chewing only soft food for the following two weeks. Follow ups with patients are done on routine basis for total of 4 follow ups in the span of 4 month. Upon completions of healing of the implant which on average takes about 4-month, final restoration is placed, and the treatment is finished. Average bone height and density around the finished implant are measured upon every semi-annual visit and home care instructions are tailored for each patient accordingly.
Advantages of dental implants
Dental implants have many advantages. They most closely resemble natural teeth in appearance, feel and function. They act like a natural tooth once placed in the bone and maintain bone height and density if the implant is in healthy state. They are easy to maintain and easy to repair in case of failure of the prosthesis. There are numerous reasons as to why dental implants are the golden standard in dentistry in replacing missing teeth as they continue to improve in technology.