Who is a Candidate for Dental Implants?
The American Dental Association estimates that millions of Americans are missing a tooth. If you are one of them, you do not have to feel alone and there are multiple options available to you. A dental implant may be a good tooth replacement option for you. There are a few important factors that will determine if you are a good candidate for dental implants. Our team at O'Sullivan, DeLuca & Ressel Dental Care will help you determine what options are available for you, and possibly, which dental implant may work for your needs.
Most People Are Considered to Be Good Candidates
When it comes to dental implants, most people are relatively good candidates for the procedures involved. Dental implants can replace one, several, or a full set of teeth and there are three different implant procedures you can undergo to fix your smile. During your preliminary exam, our staff will look at several different factors. First, we check to see if you have healthy gum tissue, which is imperative to a successful dental implant. Without viable gum tissue, the procedure will likely fail, at least partially, depending on the severity and where your gums are most weakened. We also check to make sure your jawbone is not only in good health, but that it has also stopped growing. This makes sure there is a strong, stable bone to hold the anchor in place. If you are experiencing bone loss, do not worry. We may recommend dental implants to prevent bone loss. During a dental implant treatment, we can rebuild your bone through bone grafting first, before setting the implants into place.
The Different Dental Implant Procedures
There are three types of surgeries you may be recommended. The first dental procedure is known as an endosteal implant, also referred to as a traditional implant. This procedure is the most invasive of the three surgeries and requires more time and anchors in your mouth. We place a strong anchor, usually titanium, into the area where the missing tooth is located. If you have several missing teeth or an entire set missing, you will have to have an anchor placed where each tooth would normally be located. This anchor acts as the root of the tooth and naturally fuses with your jawbone over a several month period. A crown is then attached to the anchor, usually through cementing. These teeth are typically made of porcelain but may be made of other materials. An endosteal surgery takes a longer recovery time than other methods.
The second type of dental implant available is an All-on-4® implant. This utilizes a similar method to an endosteal implant, using anchors to place a set of dentures into your mouth. However, we only use four to six anchors in your mouth during this procedure, making it significantly less taxing and giving you shorter recovery time. This is best if you have ever suffered from severe tooth decay or periodontitis. This procedure is only viable if you are missing an entire set of teeth.
While technically not an implant, a dental bridge is a viable option we may recommend as a permanent solution. Dental bridges use the adjacent teeth as support to form the bridge. We glue the crowns directly to your nearby teeth to hold and stabilize the crowns. This procedure only works if you are missing a single tooth or a few in a row. So, if you are missing an entire set of teeth, the other two options are the only viable option for you.
While missing teeth can be embarrassing, there are several easy fixes available to you. Our staff at O'Sullivan, DeLuca & Ressel Dental Care will help you make an informed decision on the best dental implant for your case. Contact us today at (352) 666-9898.