Dental Implants- The Ultimate Tooth Replacement

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What is a Dental Implant?

A Dental Implant is a surgical device that is placed in the jaw to allow the attachment of an artificial tooth or teeth. There are basically 3 types of dental implants. The root-form endosseous implant is the one most commonly used today. It is a titanium cylinder that looks similar to a tooth root and is placed inside the bone. The blade endosseous implant is an older type of implant that is placed in the bone with a flat blade sticking up. The last type of implant is a subperiosteal implant, which is placed on top of the bone but under the gum line. Since the advent of root form implants, the other two types are used very infrequently.

Who is a candidate for a Dental Implant?

Anyone who has lost one or more teeth and has healthy bone tissue can get a dental implant. The success rate for root-form implants is about 95%. People who are questionable candidates are smokers, heavy drinkers and diabetics. Also, patient with uncontrolled gum disease are high risk.

What is the procedure for a Dental Implant?

The first appointment consists of a treatment planning appointment with the general dentist and the surgeon. The type of implant, number of Implants, and type of restoration to replace the missing tooth or teeth will be determined. Special x-rays and even a cat scan may be necessary. Once a plan has been outlined, the next appointment is scheduled. This is the actual surgical appointment. An incision is made in the gums and the implants are placed in the bone tissue. The gums are closed and the patient is sent home. After a healing period of 4-6 months, the implants are uncovered and impressions are taken. From these impressions the laboratory will fabricate the new teeth.

How painful are Dental Implants?

Most patients prefer to be sedated when having implants placed. The recovery time is usually only about 1-3 days and the majority of patients don’t need anything stronger than Advil or Tylenol.


Article by
Beverly Hills Dentist