Would you believe that nearly 178 million Americans are missing one or more teeth? When you’re missing a tooth, you may have difficulty eating or speaking, which can also make you self-conscious about your smile. 

Here’s the good news: getting dental implants is one of the most effective ways to restore your smile! Dental implants are safe, effective, and indistinguishable from your natural teeth. 

If you’ve found yourself thinking, “I need teeth implants,” but don’t know where to begin, then read on. We’ll break down what to know before getting dental implants, including the steps for getting dental implants and what to expect throughout the tooth extraction and dental implant procedure.  

What Are Dental Implants, And How Do They Work

There are a variety of reasons why you might need to get a tooth implant. For some, jawbone deterioration may make it difficult to wear dentures. For others, missing teeth can cause structure and alignment issues. Trauma, genetics, and medical conditions can also create a need for dental implants. 

No matter why you need an implant, it’s essential to get answers to the questions, “What are dental implants, and how do they work?”

What Are Dental Implants? 

Dental implants are oral prostheses that dentists use to replace missing teeth. They require permanent attachment to the jawbone and consist of three parts:  

  1. Implant body: a post made from titanium that fits into your bone like a screw. The implant helps anchor a crown, bridge, or denture in place. 
  2. Abutment: a connector between the implant and the replacement tooth or dental crown.
  3. Crown, bridge, or denture: these are the visible pieces that fill in the gaps where you lost one or more teeth.

Once the appliance is in place, it looks identical to that of a natural tooth.  

How Do Dental Implants Work? 

Once a dental implant is in place, a process called “osseointegration” takes place. This is when the implant fuses with your jawbone and becomes a permanent part of your body. While the surgical implant placement procedure is often fairly quick, the osseointegration process can take several months. 

How well do dental implants work? The materials of a dental implant are compatible with your body, so they’re safe to use long-term. When done correctly, dental implants can last the rest of your life. This makes implants an excellent solution for replacing missing teeth! 

What To Know Before Getting Dental Implants 

Knowing what occurs throughout the process is key when you’re told it’s time to get a tooth implant. Let’s break down the tooth extraction and dental implant procedure so you know what you’ll experience when you tell your dentist, “I need teeth implants!” and they confirm that you’re a good candidate. Otherwise, they may recommend alternative options.

Initial Consultation

The process begins with an initial consultation with a dental expert. During this appointment, the dentist will evaluate your oral health, examine the condition of your teeth and gums, and assess whether dental implants are a suitable option for you. They will also perform a CBCT scan to check that the jawbone is healthy enough to regrow around the implant and secure it.

Treatment Planning

Once they’ve determined that you’re a good candidate for dental implants, the next step is treatment planning. This involves creating a customized treatment plan based on your specific needs and goals. The dentist will consider factors such as the number of missing teeth, the condition of the jawbone, and any additional procedures that may be required, such as bone grafting or tooth extractions.

Tooth Extraction (if necessary)

If there are damaged or decayed teeth that need to be replaced with dental implants, a tooth extraction may be required. The extraction process involves numbing the area with local anesthesia and removing the damaged tooth from its socket. In some cases, the dentist may need to perform a surgical extraction. After the extraction, a bone graft is necessary to fill in the socket so the implant has something to hold onto.

Dental Implant Placement

Dental implant placement is typically performed in multiple stages. In the first stage, the dentist will surgically place the dental implant post into the jawbone. This post serves as the artificial root for the replacement tooth. After the implant is placed, the area is allowed to heal for a period of several weeks to several months. During this healing phase, the implant fuses with the jawbone in a process called osseointegration.

Abutment Placement

Once the implant has fully integrated with the jawbone, a minor surgical procedure is performed to attach an abutment to the implant post. The abutment serves as a connector between the implant and the replacement tooth or dental crown.

Dental Crown or Prosthesis Placement

After the abutment is placed, impressions or digital scans are taken to create a custom-made dental crown or prosthesis. This replacement tooth is designed to match the color, shape, and size of your natural teeth, ensuring a natural-looking result. The dental crown or prosthesis is then attached to the abutment, completing the dental implant restoration.

Follow-up and Maintenance

Once the dental implant procedure is complete, you’ll be provided with post-operative instructions and scheduled for follow-up appointments to monitor the healing process and ensure the success of the implant. Regular dental check-ups and good oral hygiene practices, including brushing, flossing, and professional cleanings, are essential to maintain the health and longevity of your dental implant.

It’s important to note that the timeline and specific steps may vary based on individual factors, such as the complexity of the case. Consulting with a qualified dental implant dentist will provide you with a personalized treatment plan and a better understanding of the process based on your unique situation.

Replace Your Missing Teeth At Northside Dental Co 

If you’re saying, “I need teeth implants,” call Northside Dental Co.

Although it might seem daunting, getting dental implants is a relatively easy procedure with many advantages. Knowing what to expect, from your initial consultation to post-operative care, can help ease your anxiety and excite you about the end results. 

Our team of experienced dentists can help you understand all the options available for replacing your missing teeth. Contact Northside Dental Co to get started on your journey to achieving a healthy and gorgeous smile.