What are dental implants?
Dental Implants are titanium screws placed into your jawbone that replace the natural root of your tooth. There is a required healing time, during which your surrounding bone should grow around the implant, giving it additional support. After the root is settled, a crown will be placed on top to mimic your missing tooth. Once in place it will look and feel just like your natural tooth.
When to use dental implants
Single missing tooth
If you are replacing one tooth, you have two good options: a dental implant, or a dental bridge. Placing a bridge involves two more teeth. You’ll not only be placing a prosthetic in place of the missing tooth, but the two adjacent teeth will need crowns. The lab will construct them as a single piece, with your false tooth between the two crowns.
There are advantages and disadvantages to a bridge. One disadvantage occurs if either of the adjacent teeth needs work done. There is always the possibility the entire bridge will then have to be redone. With an implant, on the other hand, the dentist only has to worry about the tooth directly affected. Because the root is implanted directly into the bone, this leaves all surrounding teeth independent. The main advantage to a bridge is time. A bridge can be placed in two appointments that are only 1-2 weeks apart. Implants require a healing period of months before the prosthetic can be placed.
A Full Set of Teeth
If you are missing your entire set of teeth, dental implants are the safest and best option. While some people will opt for removable dentures, there some important considerations to think about.
The most serious issue is facial collapse. When all your teeth are extracted, your jawbone begins to shrink. After tooth loss, your body begins to absorb your lower jaw and mandible. The result in twenty years will be a shrunken jaw. In some cases, this can get so severe as to eliminate the possibility of wearing dentures at all.
Another consideration is comfort— both physical and social. Dentures move around, not only irritating your gums and mouth, but allowing food to get underneath. There is also the worry that they will fall out in public. Dental Implants avoids these problems by giving your jaw a new support system, anchoring your new teeth securely to your gums.
The Procedure for Dental Implants
This procedure is divided into two parts. The first part is done surgically. A titanium implant is anchored to the jawbone. Many dentists have to outsource this part of the procedure. However, Dr. Burgess completed a 9-month implant continuum with the Triangle Dental Institute and is able to place the implants himself. This is an important advantage. Many times complications arise from miscommunication between the dentist and oral surgeon in exactly where and how to place the implants. Because Dr. Burgess can do the surgery himself it eliminates that contingency.
After the surgery is completed, you will need to allow your jaw some time to heal. During the healing process, the goal is for the bone to grow around the implant. After this procedure is completed the second stage takes place. Your new replacement teeth are attached to the roots. You will have a beautiful, natural smile, and will be able to eat anything you were able to when you had your own set of natural teeth.
Dr. Burgess prefers to use Straumann Dental Implants. They’ve had years of tested quality and clinical excellence. He wants his patients to have the best, giving them years of comfort and peace of mind about their tooth replacement.
Dr. Burgess has been restoring implants since 1987 and has a high standard for patient care. Even with all his years of experience, he continues to push himself further in his continuing education. Taking five times the amount of courses required by the state, he shows a level of commitment to his patients that sets him apart from your average dentist. As of May of 2013. he will be a fellow with the ICOI (International College of Oral Implantologists). If you would like to know if you’re a candidate for dental implants, Dr. Burgess would be happy to have you come in for a complimentary consultation to ask some questions. Please call (910) 762-1402 or visit our make an appointment page.