Dental implants are one of the most exciting advances in modern dentistry today. Before dental implants, dentists were limited in their options to replace missing teeth. Today, implants can be used to replace single teeth, spans of missing teeth and even entire arches!
In 1953 it was discovered that the human body does not recognize titanium as foreign material and that, when placed in bone, the hard and soft tissue will heal around it resulting in what we term as “osseointegration”. Since the mid 1960s, dental implants have been used to replace teeth in humans. Over the years the technology has advanced considerably and studies today now show that the 5 year success rate is consistently high with one study showing them to be as high as 98.6%*
* Jung, R. E., etc, Clinical Oral Implants Research 19, 2008
How they work…
Implants consist of three parts. The actual implant is the titanium screw that is placed into the bone of your jaw. After your body has healed around the implant and it is secured, a metal abutment is screwed into place in the implant and a dental crown is cemented on to the abutment. The result is a replacement that looks and feels very much like a real tooth.
The benefits of implants start with a quality of life improvement. Missing teeth can lead to issues such as decreased confidence and a poor diet. Additionally, when teeth are missing for a long period of time, bone loss will occur. In many denture wearers, without implants, the bone can become so thin that jaw fractures can become a major concern. With dental implants, bone loss is significantly shortened if not halted in most patients. Unlike bridges, dental implants do not require modifying or reducing neighboring teeth for support. Additionally, dental implants allow for restorations to be fixed in the mouth and do not require the patient to remove their appliances nightly. To learn more, please contact us to schedule an appointment.