Good oral health is a reflection of your overall health. Problems in your mouth are bound to affect your entire body, and taking care of your oral health is a part of taking care of your overall well being. A smile is an essential thing for many people as it is a reflection of how well a person is feeling from within. With missing or decayed teeth, a beautiful smile is not possible. That is why at Northridge Dental Implant Center, we offer an excellent solution for your missing teeth that will not only give your mouth back its full functionality but also restore your beautiful smile. Our dental implants surgery services are a vital link between your oral health and overall health, therefore take advantage of them.

What are Dental Implants?

Dental Implants are artificial tooth roots that are placed into a person’s jaw to offer support to replacement teeth or bridges. They are an excellent option for people who have lost teeth due to injury, periodontal disease, or any other reason. Dental Implants are the closest a person will get to natural teeth that look and feel healthy. When a person loses a tooth or teeth, they may feel embarrassed to smile or even socialize. But implants give you another chance to live your life fully. After their installation, the person can confidentially laugh, smile, eat, kiss, and enjoy their everyday life without worrying about the look and nature of their teeth.

Dental implants are artificial roots for your teeth. They are just like the natural tooth roots in shape, screws, and everything. When the installation of implants into a person’s jawbone happens, they bond with the natural bone to provide a steady base for supporting artificial teeth, which are also called dental crowns. Dental implants have a connector called the abutment, which is placed at the top of the implant to support and hold the dental crowns. Dental crowns are usually custom-made, so they can match your natural teeth and also fit perfectly in your mouth.

The modern dental implants have been around for over 30 years now. They are strong enough to support replacement teeth as well as allow your new teeth to look, feel, and function just like natural teeth. You only need to work with a well-trained and experienced dental implant specialist for this. The good thing is that dental implants surgery is a very safe and predictable dental procedure.

Advantages of Dental Implants

There are many advantages of dental implants, with the most common ones being:

  • They improve a person’s general appearance: It is because they feel and look just like regular teeth and are designed to fuse with your bones, thereby becoming permanent
  • They improve a person’s speech: If dentures are poorly-fitted, they can slip out of the mouth when a person is talking, causing them to slur or mumble their words. Dental implants are different and will allow the person to speak without worrying about their teeth slipping out
  • Implants are very comfortable: It is because, after installation, they become a part of the person. Again, the use of implants eliminates any discomfort that comes with removable dentures
  • Easy to eat with: When compared to dentures, chewing is much easier when a person has implants. As mentioned above, implants function just as healthy teeth. they will, therefore, allow the person to eat and chew all their favorite foods without any discomfort or pain
  • They improve a person’s self-esteem: If you are worried about your look after losing a tooth or teeth, dental implants are a sure way to restore your self-confidence. with implants, you can smile again, feel better about yourself and go back to your usual happy life in no time
  • It is an excellent way to improve your oral health: Dental implants do not interfere with your other teeth. They only enhance your overall look. Since all your other natural teeth remain untouched, it is a great way to improve your overall oral health. Again, it is easy to access between teeth with implants for improved oral hygiene.
  • Dental implants are durable: Once you lose a tooth or teeth, installing dental implants will give you a more permanent solution to your problem. an implant can last for many years and more years with proper care

Dental Implants Surgery

Implant surgery is a dental procedure that aims at replacing the roots of a tooth with a screw-like metal post that looks and functions just like the natural root so that a person will be able to have their missing or damaged tooth replaced with an artificial one that looks and works like a real tooth. Implant surgery is an excellent alternative to bridgework and dentures that do not always fit well. They are a great option when the patient lacks natural roots, which will not allow them to build a bridgework or denture tooth replacement.

Dental implants surgery can be performed in different ways, depending on the kind of implant a patient needs and the state of their jawbone. The procedures involved are many too. The main advantage of undergoing this surgery is the reliable support that the implants provide your new teeth. The dentist performs surgery in such a way that the bone heals tightly about the implant. However, since bone healing takes a long time, the entire process could take several months.

Dental implants surgery is only done by a professional dentist who is well trained and experienced in dental implantation. To complete the process, the dentist places dental implants surgically in a patient’s jawbone, where the implants will work as the supports or roots of the missing tooth/teeth. The titanium of the dental implants is designed to fuse with a person’s jawbone. This way, the implants will not slip out of the mouth, make sound, or even cause any damage to the parson’s jawbone. Again, the use of quality materials ensures that they do not decay, the same way the person’s teeth that supports traditional bridgework can. It leaves you with ideally looking/feeling teeth for a very long time.

Dentists recommend dental implants surgery to the following list of people:

  • Those who have missing tooth/teeth
  • Those whose jawbone has attained full growth
  • Those who have an adequate jawbone that can hold the implants, or those that can support bone grafting
  • Those people whose oral tissues are in perfect health
  • Those who do not have any conditions that could affect the healing of the jawbone
  • People who are unwilling or unable to wear removable dentures
  • Those people who would like to improve their speech
  • Those who are ready to obligate several months of their time to this dental process
  • Those who do not smoke tobacco

Are There Risks in Dental Implants Surgery?

If performed by a well-trained and experienced dental surgeon, dental implants surgery can be the safest and most effective dental procedures. Patients can enjoy strong support for their teeth replacement as well as a better appearance. Moreover, the function of their teeth is restored, as well as stimulated bone growth under the replaced teeth. However, there are exceptions, and these could include several complications and risks associated with dental implants surgery that should not be ignored.

Just like every other surgery, the installation of dental implants could pose some health threats to the patient. Although these issues are rare, they can significantly affect the health of the patient. That is why they should be anticipated and treated immediately they occur. Some of these risks include:

  • Infections at the place where there was the installation of the implant
  • Damage or injuries to the surrounding structures. These could be blood vessels or other teeth around the implant site
  • Nerve damage- This could cause pain, tingling or numbness in the other natural teeth, lips, chin or gums
  • Sinus problems- These could occur if the installation of the implants in the upper jaw project into one or more of the patient’s sinuses cavities

Preparing for Dental Implants Surgery

Dental implants surgery is not a simple procedure; therefore, it will need the approval of several specialists. Some of these include the following:

  • A doctor whose specialization is in the issues regarding the jaw, mouth, and face. Also, a maxillofacial surgeon
  • A dentist whose area of specialization is in the treatment of structures that provide support for the teeth, also called a periodontist. Such structures are, for instance, bones and gums.
  • A dentist who is in charge of designing and fitting artificial teeth also called a prosthodontist
  • Sometimes there will be a need for a review by an ENT specialist, whose areas of specialization are the nose, ears, and throat

The reason why the patient will need proper examination by these specialists is that sometimes the installation of dental implants involves more than one procedure. For that reason, he/she will require a detailed evaluation in preparation for the procedure. Some of the necessary procedures needed during preparation for surgery include:

  • A complete dental examination: This could include dental 3D images and X-rays. Your dentist will also require models of your jaw and teeth made
  • An evaluation of your health history: You will be required to tell your dentist about any health condition you might have and all the medicines you take. These could include all prescriptions as well as supplements and drugs bought over the counter, which you might be taking at that moment. In case you have a particular orthopedic implant or a heart condition, your doctor will prescribe some antibiotics before the surgery begins to prevent any infection
  • A treatment plan: You will also be required to have a treatment plan that is tailored to suit your exact situation. The plan will take into consideration such factors as the state of your bone, the number of teeth you may want to have replaced, plus the state of the remaining teeth.

In addition to the above procedures, the patient will need to know in advance about the anesthesia options available that will help control the pain. They may include sedation, general anesthesia, or local anesthesia. You may want to speak to your doctor in advance about your most preferred option. Once everything is in place, your dentist will give you instructions about drinking and eating before the procedure. The basis for this is the kind of anesthesia option for which you will go.

The Procedure for Dental Implants Surgery

Installation of dental implants is an outpatient surgical operation that is conducted in several stages, with some healing time provided in between the procedures. Before the implants are permanently placed on the space left by the missing tooth/teeth, there are several steps that your dentist will take you through. They include:

  • Removal of the damaged tooth/teeth, if there are any that need replacement
  • Preparing the jawbone if required, through grafting
  • Placement of the dental implants
  • Growth of the jawbone and healing
  • Placement of abutment
  • Installation of the artificial youth/teeth

This whole process will take several months, with much of the time dedicated to the healing and to wait for a new jawbone to grow. Sometimes specific steps can be combined, but this all depends on the patient’s situation, the particular procedure that is being done, and the kinds of materials that are used.

Jawbone grafting will be required if your dentist realizes that your bone is not dense enough or that it is very soft and cannot support the surgery. This problem with the jawbone comes because of the high pressure a person exerts on it while chewing. When the bone is too soft or not thick enough, it will not be able to support implants, and the surgery may fail eventually. With bone grafting, your dentist will have a more firm basis for the implants.

Several materials could be used for grafting to reconstruct a patient’s jawbone for the operation. You can opt for a natural graft, in which case the content will be removed from a different location in the body. There is also synthetic grafting, whereby a bone-substitute is used to provide a support structure for the growth of new bone. The latter will take time as it can take more than a few months for a bone that has been transplanted to develop enough to support an implant.

However, there are instances when only minor grafting is needed, in which case it could be completed in the same period as the surgery. The only important thing to note is that it is the state of your bone that will determine the speed at which the procedure will begin.

Installation of Dental Implants

Once the state of your bone is considered to be okay, your dentist will install the dental implants. It is done by cutting open the patient’s gum and exposing their jawbone. After that, some holes are bored into the jawbone to create a place where metal posts for dental implants will be installed. The post will act as the root of the tooth, which is why it must be rooted deep into the jawbone.

After this process, the patient will still be having a gap where his/her teeth are missing. If you are worried about that, your dentist could place a temporary denture into that space to improve your appearance. The denture can be removed when the person is sleeping or cleaning their teeth.

When the metal post has been placed in the jawbone, the process called osseointegration will begin. It is the process through which the bone grows and joins with the external part of the implant. The process is long and could take some months. The healing will give a strong base for the patient’s new teeth, just the same as the roots of their natural teeth.

Placement of the Abutment

Once the healing process has been completed, the patient may require more surgery for the installation of the abutment. This is the part where dental crowns will ultimately be attached. The surgery is a minor operation that is usually performed with local anesthesia and in outpatient settings. The following will be done to install the abutment:

  • Your doctor will reopen your gums once again to uncover the installed implant
  • The abutment will then be attached to the installed implants
  • The gum tissues will then be closed all round but not above the abutment

There are instances when a dental surgeon opts to attach the abutment to dental implants after the metal posts have been implanted. What this means is that there will be no need for additional surgery. After its installation, the abutment will be visible because it extends past the gum-line. It is only visible when the patient opens their mouth and will remain like that until the dentist finishes the dental prosthesis. Some patients will not be comfortable with that, in which case the dentist can have the installation done in a different procedure.

Once the abutment has been installed, the patient will have to give his/her gums some time to settle for around two weeks, and then the artificial teeth can be attached.

How to Choose Your New Teeth

When your gums have healed completely, it is time to have the artificial teeth installed. Your dentist will make more impressions of your mouth as well as the remaining teeth, to make crowns. Crowns are the natural-looking but false teeth. Note that the new crowns will not be installed until your dentist is sure that your bone is sturdy enough to back the use of a new tooth. In the meantime, you can sit down and agree on the nature and color of your new teeth. There are three options to choose from on the kind of artificial teeth: fixed, removable, and a blend of both.

Fixed artificial teeth are those that will be permanently cemented or screwed on each implant abutment that you got. Once they are installed, you will not be able to remove any of those teeth when sleeping or cleaning. In most cases, every crown is placed in an individual dental implant. But since implants are solid, more than one tooth can be installed in one dental implant if they are bridged together.

Removable artificial teeth, on the other hand, are just the same as the removable dentures. They could either be a full or partial denture. What you get is an artificial white tooth that is surrounded by pink plastic gum. It is mounted on the metal frame that has been attached to the implant abutment, whereby it snaps tightly into place. Artificial teeth can be removed when sleeping, for repair, and when doing your daily cleaning.

Caring For Your Dental Implants

Dental implants need proper care and maintenance for them to serve you well and for a long time. Proper dental care will also take care of the remaining teeth and ensure that your oral health is good at all times. There are several things that you can do at home to achieve this:

  • You should practice good oral hygiene every day: just the same way you care for your regular teeth, your dental implants, gum tissue, and artificial teeth need proper care. It is done through daily cleaning. Some brushes have been specially designed to achieve the best results when cleaning your teeth. These brushes can clean the entire area surrounding your teeth, metal posts and gums.
  • Visit your dentist regularly: dental checkups are essential as they help detect a problem before it worsens. Regular dental checkups will ensure that your dental implants remain healthy and functional. you will also receive additional advice and tips on how to professionally clean them
  • Avoid any damaging habits that could not only affect your new teeth but your remaining natural teeth as well. These habits are, for instance, chewing on hard things such as hard candy or ice. These may break your dental crowns and your regular teeth. You should also avoid caffeine products and tobacco as they might stain and weaken your teeth. If you are fond of grinding your teeth, get medical help immediately.

Find a Northridge Dental Implant Center Near Me

If you have a missing tooth, dental implants are the way to go for a more natural and permanent look. What you need is a well-trained and experienced dentist to take you through the process. Dental implant surgery may seem like a long and complicated process, but it gets more comfortable when you have the right dentist by your side. At Northridge Dental Implant Center, we have excellent dental implants surgery services that will ensure that your smile is restored once again. Call us at 818-925-9181 , and let us help restore your beauty.