Posts for tag: Dental Implants
Losing teeth can make it more difficult to eat, not to mention the effect it can have on your smile. But that could be just the beginning of your problems. Missing teeth can contribute to extensive bone loss within your jaws and face. Here's why.
Bone is like any other living tissue—cells develop, function and eventually die, and new cells take their place. Forces generated during chewing stimulate this new growth, helping the jawbone maintain its normal volume and density.
But you lose this stimulus when you lose teeth. This can cause a slowdown in bone cell regrowth that can eventually diminish bone volume. And it can happen relatively quickly: you could lose a quarter or more of jawbone width around a missing tooth within a year.
As this loss continues, especially in cases of multiple missing teeth, the bone can eventually erode to its base level. This loss of dental function can make chewing more difficult, place more pressure on the remaining teeth and adversely affect facial appearance. It could also prevent an implant restoration to replace missing teeth.
Dentures and other forms of dental restoration can replace missing teeth, but not the chewing stimulus. Dentures in particular will accelerate bone loss, because they can irritate the bony gum ridges they rest upon.
Dental implants, on the other hand, can slow or even stop bone loss. Implants consist of a metal post, typically made of titanium, imbedded into the jawbone at the site of the missing tooth with a life-like crown attached. Titanium also has a strong affinity with bone so that bone cells naturally grow and adhere to the implant's surface. This can produce enough growth to slow, stop or even reverse bone loss.
This effect may also work when implants are combined with other restorations, including dentures. These enhanced dentures no longer rest on the gums, but connect to implants. This adds support and takes the pressure off of the bony ridge, as well as contributes to better bone health.
If you've lost a tooth, it's important to either replace it promptly or have a bone graft installed to help forestall any bone loss in the interim. And when it's time to replace those missing teeth, dental implants could provide you not only a life-like solution, but a way to protect your bone health.
If you would like more information on dental implants, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “The Hidden Consequences of Losing Teeth.”
Restore Your Smile With Dental Implants.
You have a variety of options when it comes to restoring your smile if you've lost a tooth. But of the available options, you'll find that dental implants can provide a very natural appearance, stronger support, and longer-lasting results. Learn more about the procedure by reaching out to your Charleston, SC, Dr. Denise Stone of Stone Family Dentistry.
Why Restoration is Important
When you have a gap in your smile what happens is that the surrounding teeth will often shift to occupy the empty space. This causes a ripple effect with other teeth in the row, which may cause problems with spacing and may alter your bite.
Unlike a dental bridge, dental implants do not require the reshaping of your healthy teeth in order to support your new tooth. Dental implants are instead supported in a similar way to your natural teeth. But instead of a root, a titanium post is bonded directly onto the bone of your jaw, and this will serve to support a crown.
The process through which the titanium post bonds to bone is called osseointegration integration. It's a process where bone cells grow around the post to permanently secure it. The end result can last a lifetime given proper care, only the crown may need to be replaced but even that can last a very long time. Another upside is that a dental implant also cannot suffer decay, but the soft tissue that surrounds it and the rest of your smile very much can so it's important to maintain good dental health habits.
Restoring Multiple Teeth
To restore multiple teeth dental implant-supported dentures can be an improved option to traditional removable dentures. These can combat many of the common complaints regarding removable dentures, such as shifting and slipping as you eat or speak. They can do so because they are held in place by dental implants. You can restore a full set of teeth with fewer implants than the number of teeth they are restoring, and are available as both full and partial.
Dental Implants in Charleston, SC
Not everyone may be a candidate for dental implants so it's important to come in to find out if you can become one, and if dental implants are the best solution for you. So schedule a consultation with Dr. Stone of Stone Family Dentistry in Charleston, SC, by dialing (843) 556-6566.
It's a common practice among people slowly losing their teeth to have their remaining teeth removed. They find dentures to be less costly than replacing one tooth at a time or caring for those that remain. On the other hand, it's usually healthier for the mouth to preserve remaining teeth as long as possible, replacing them only as necessary.
This latter strategy has up to now been difficult and expensive to achieve. But dental implants are changing that—using these imbedded titanium metal devices with a variety of restorations, we're able to better plan and implement staged tooth replacement.
Most people associate implants with single tooth replacements of a life-like crown cemented or screwed into an abutment attached to the implant post. This can play an early role in a staged replacement plan, but at some point, multiple single-tooth implants can become quite expensive.
Implants, however, have a much broader range of use. A few strategically placed implants can support a variety of restorations, including bridges and removable or fixed dentures. Four to eight implants, for example, can secure a fixed denture replacing all teeth on a jaw, far fewer than the number needed to replace the teeth individually.
Implants may also improve the function of traditional restorations. For instance, dentures can't stop the bone loss that often results from tooth loss—in fact, they will accelerate it as they rub and irritate the bony ridges of the jaw. By contrast, implants stimulate bone growth, slowing or even stopping the process of bone loss.
In a traditional bridge, the outer crowns of the restoration are bonded to the teeth on either side of the missing tooth gap (the middle crowns fill the gap). These support teeth must be permanently altered to accommodate the crowns. But an implant-supported bridge doesn't depend on other teeth for support, thus eliminating the need to permanently alter any teeth.
More importantly, previously placed implants often become part of the next stages of tooth replacement, like building on an addition onto an existing house. All in all, including implants in your ongoing dental restoration can help you enjoy the benefits of preserving your natural teeth for much longer.
If you would like more information on dental restoration options, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Replacing All Teeth but Not All at Once.”
The Benefits of Dental Implants
If you take care of your smile, it can last a lifetime, but unfortunately, sometimes dental issues arise that require a tooth extraction, or you may lose teeth due to an injury or aging. In these cases, the best thing to do is get your missing teeth replaced as soon as possible. Dental implants provide a great solution for missing teeth. Dr. Denise Stone is a dentist at Stone Family Dentistry in Charleston, SC. She specializes in dental implant surgery.
Why Dental Implants are a Good Idea
Having missing teeth is not only an embarrassment, but it can also be bad for your oral health because, if left untreated, your gums will begin to deteriorate rapidly. Charleston dental patients have been replacing missing teeth with dental implants for more than 50 years. Here are the benefits:
- Improving your appearance: One of the main benefits of dental implants is that they restore your facial structure. When many or most of your teeth are missing, your face tends to sag, causing wrinkles around your mouth and making your look older. Dental implants remove the collapsed look and make you look at least ten years younger.
- Restore your confidence: Because dental implants look and feel like natural teeth, no one will be able to tell the difference. You can smile with confidence and no longer have your life dictated by missing teeth.
- Avoid bone loss: When you have missing teeth, because there is no root to stimulate jawbone regrowth, the bone will gradually erode. Because dental implants are the closest thing to natural teeth, they prevent the degradation of your bone.
- Maintain the health of existing teeth: When you have implants in the spaces between your natural teeth, this will help protect them and reduce their risk o falling out.
If you are a Charleston resident and you would like to find out more about dental implants, call Dr. Stone at (843) 556-6566 to request a consultation.
You’ve decided to obtain dental implants for your missing teeth. It’s a good choice — they provide the closest restoration to the function and appearance of natural teeth. You will, however, need to undergo a surgical procedure to imbed the implants’ threaded titanium posts into supporting bone.
It’s understandable if you’re a little apprehensive about undergoing surgery. We’re here, though, to set your mind at ease: implantation is a relatively minor procedure carefully planned in advance. Most patients experience no discomfort during the procedure and very little afterward.
We begin by completely numbing the surgical site with a local anesthetic. If you have a high level of anxiety, we can also administer a sedative or similar medication to help you relax. We then access the underlying bone through a series of incisions that create a flap in the gum tissue that we’ll later suture closed.
It’s quite common to have prepared a surgical guide or template beforehand. The template placed in the mouth marks the exact site for a small channel (or hole) we create in the bone. We then incrementally increase the size of the hole by drilling until it matches precisely the implant’s size and shape. This takes time to avoid overheating and damaging the bone.
We then remove the implant from its sterile packaging and insert it into the opening. We’ll also take x-rays to ensure correct positioning, which is critical for achieving an attractive result. We then suture the gum flap in place using stitches that will eventually dissolve. The implant will then integrate with the bone for a few weeks to create a strong, durable hold before we continue with the restoration.
Most patients can manage any post-surgical discomfort with mild anti-inflammatory pain relievers like aspirin or ibuprofen, although we can prescribe something stronger if you need it. We may also prescribe a mouthrinse with an anti-bacterial agent like chlorhexidine for you to use while the gums are healing to reduce the risk of infection.
Implant surgery is part of a long process that will eventually result in regaining the function of your lost teeth. What’s more, undergoing this minor procedure will also help you regain something just as important — a beautiful smile.
If you would like more information on dental implant restoration, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Dental Implant Surgery.”