A dental implant is a technique used to replace lost teeth permanently. Various reasons can result in a person losing a single or several teeth. A severe periodontal disease, an accident, or aging are some of the common reasons a person can lose their teeth. A person’s confidence can get seen through their smile, but when one cannot smile because they feel embarrassed, it can be disheartening. Fortunately, whether you want to replace a single tooth or all your teeth, dental implants are the best option. If in need of dental implants for your whole mouth, you need to identify a qualified dentist to do the procedure. At Northridge Dental Implant Center, we have successfully performed dental implants for a full mouth to many happy patients.

Benefits of a Full Mouth Treatment with Dental Implants

There are many procedures used in replacing missing teeth. However, when these procedures get compared to dental implants, various advantages of implants supersede the use of other methods. Some of the benefits of using dental implants for your full mouth treatment include:

Dental Implants Offer a Lasting Solution

Compared to dentures that one has to remove daily or crowns and bridges that require periodic replacement and maintenance, dental implants get permanently fitted in a patient’s mouth. A periodontist will install the screws used in implants onto the patient’s jaw bone. After that, crowns are mounted onto the implants securely, giving the patient a natural-looking smile. With implants, a patient will not need to use glue or remove their implants at any time.

Implants Offer Comfort and Stability

Compared to other procedures of replacing missing teeth, implants are more stable and comfortable. The screws used, get securely fitted on to the bone, meaning the patient will never worry about them coming out or shaking. Implants are the closest thing to natural teeth. They are comfortable to have on because they mimic the way natural teeth have roots and a crown. For this reason, they become the most logical choice when a person needs a full mouth treatment that is long-term.

Better Bones

According to the American Academy of Periodontology (APP), full mouth treatment with dental implants enhances dental and bone health compared to the use of dentures. They further warn that the use of dentures can result in the deterioration of the jaw bone resulting in the collapse of the mouth. On the other hand, dental implants are integrated into the patient’s jawbone, preserving their bone health. The overall smile of the patient is also improved.

Easy to Maintain

Dental implants are fitted directly to the jaw bone, so they do not require to get removed for cleaning. With regular or routine oral health practices, a patient may never need to have them repaired or maintained. When fitted with implants, the daily flossing and brushing after meals and periodic dental checkups should be sufficient.

With these advantages, if you require teeth replacement, visiting a periodontist to examine your dental health is essential. Your periodontist will advise you on the best option for you, depending on your situation.

Understanding Full Mouth Treatment

When it comes to full mouth treatment, it means replacing all the teeth in your entire mouth. This is one of the most challenging dental treatments. Your periodontist has to be precise to ensure success. Most doctors that perform this procedure undergo extensive training to ensure they get well versed with the technique.

The use of dental implants is the best and most effective way of restoring a person’s appearance, their comfort, and the function of their teeth. This is said to be the next best option to natural teeth. Treatment for a full mouth will generally entail:

  • The planning and diagnostic stages that take a few weeks. The procedures carried out here include taking mouth CT scans, X-rays, smile design, diagnostic mock-ups, and virtual planning, among others.

  • The fixing of dental implants on the upper jawbone. These are typically between six and eight implants

  • Fixing of between four and six dental implants on the lower jawbone

  • Fabricating of a temporary fixed bridge

  • The fitting of natural-looking crowns or teeth on the implants using screws or dental cement.

Understanding Dental Implants and How they Work

Dental implants resemble metal frames or posts that get surgically fitted on a patient’s jawbone, below their gums. Once they are well secured, they allow the mounting of replacement teeth on them by your periodontist.

When the implants get fitted on the jaw bone, they begin to fuse naturally on to the patient’s bone to offer secure support for prosthetic teeth. This means that the teeth get securely supported and will not slip off when a person is talking or eating. Implants can get used to secure bridges or dentures too.

Most people, however, prefer implants because they offer a permanent solution as well as comfort and stability. Before a doctor, however, fixes implants on you, they carry out an exam on your health. A potential patient must have excellent oral hygiene and sufficient bone to carry the implant securely. Maintaining excellent dental health routine and periodic visits to your dentist are essential in ensuring your implants are successful and last long.

It is essential to understand that dental implants are more expensive compared to other methods of replacing teeth. Most insurance policies do not cover them, and those that do, carry a small percentage.

When you visit your periodontist to replace your teeth with implants, he or she will discuss with you the types of implants available. Depending on the outcome of the medical examination or the patient’s preference, the doctor can recommend the ideal kind of implant. These types are:

  • Subperiosteal Implants – they are made from a metallic frame that gets fixed on the patient’s jawbone, beneath the gum. During the healing of the gum, the frame attaches itself to the jawbone. The frame is made with some posts designed to come out through the gums. The prosthetic teeth or crowns get fitted on the protruding posts.

  • Endosteal Implants – the dental implants are fixed to the jawbone directly through a surgical procedure. After the healing of the gum tissue surrounding the implant, another surgical procedure takes place. This is usually to connect the post that will hold the crown to the implant. After the second surgery, artificial teeth get fitted on the posts.

The Surgical Procedure

Before the implants are fixed, your periodontist will carry out a comprehensive evaluation of your mouth. Aside from the CT scans and X-rays, among other procedures, a mold of your teeth is taken. This is important in ensuring that the teeth fitted will match what your original teeth would look like.

The doctor will also check to see how healthy your jawbone is and if you have sufficient bone to support the implants. This is a detailed process that could see other dental professionals work together with your dentist. Your periodontist will also ask you questions to know if you suffer from any medical condition or are taking any form of medication. In case you have orthopaedic implants or heart conditions, your doctor may find it necessary to prescribe particular antibiotics to take before the surgery. This is necessary for preventing any infections from coming up.

During this time, your periodontist will also discuss the options available for surgical anesthesia and which one is suitable for you. You will then be given several things you can do or to do and not to do before the surgical procedure.

The surgery to fit dental implants gets done in various stages. This is required to allow the healing of the jawbone before the next procedure gets carried out. Some of the things that will get done before your full mouth treatment include:

  • Removal of any remaining weak or damaged teeth

  • Preparing the jawbone for surgery. If the doctor discovers that you do not have sufficient bone to support implants, he or she may perform bone grafting to correct the situation.

  • Once the bone gets healed, the periodontist inserts the implants

  • Again, time is given to allow the healing of the jaw. Afterward, the abutment, which is like a metallic protrusion, is fitted on the installed implant. The abutment is the place where the crown or tooth is attached, making the process complete.

Fixing dental implants can take a few months to complete. The various stages that allow the jaw to heal in between lengthening the process. The process is made even longer when there is a need for bone grafting to create sufficient support for the implants.

Bone Grafting

Your periodontist may discover the mass of your bone is not sufficient to support dental implants, or it may be very soft. The pressure from chewing requires for the bones to be reliable. Additionally, for the protection of the implant, the bone needs to be stable and sufficient as well. Sometimes a patient will require an additional bone to be fitted onto their jawbone for the implant to be well supported.

Adding an extra piece of bone on to a patient’s jawbone is achieved through a procedure known as bone grafting. This involves transplanting bone from a different part of your body to create the support required.

Your doctor will examine the state of your bone and determine whether to allow the bone to heal before fixing the implants, or the implants can be fitted together with the bone grafting.

As your gums go through the healing process after the fixing of the implants, your periodontist will issue you with temporary dentures to keep the mouth appearing full. You must, however, take extra precautions in caring for your dentures to avoid an infection. When you need to clean them, you will remove them and use warm water to remove any particles trapped between them.

After the grafting of the bone, a process known as osseointegration begins to happen. This is when the bone starts to grow and attach to the implant surface. This makes it part of the natural gum line. This whole process usually takes between three and nine months, depending on the patient.

How the Abutment is Fitted

Once the osseointegration and healing process is complete, you will get an appointment to have the abutment fixed. This, as earlier mentioned, is a metallic piece that gets screwed onto the implant. The abutment is the part that protrudes from the implant where the crown or prosthetic teeth get attached. The procedure is simple and does not require the patient to stay overnight in the hospital. Local anesthesia gets used during the process.

Sometimes, your doctor can attach the abutment to the dental implant at the first implantation stage. However, the patient may not like the look of protrusions from the gum and will prefer another procedure to install it.

The periodontist will create an incision on your gums to attach the abutment. The incision is meant to expose the dental implant to allow for the fixing. The tissue around the incision is closed and left to heal for a few weeks.

Picking your New Teeth

After your gums get healed, your dentist will take more impressions of your mouth to be used in making of the crowns or your teeth. You will be able to choose from two types of teeth. These are the removable ones or fixed ones.

Removable crowns are similar to having removable dentures that get fixed on the metal frame secured in place by the implants and abutment. These removable prosthetics are easy to remove to allow cleaning and replacement when needed. It is a more affordable choice for many as well.

On the other hand, fixed implants mean the teeth cannot get removed; neither can they be easily replaced. This choice of fixed prosthetics is preferred by many because it is long-lasting and appears like your natural teeth.

Following the Surgery, What Happens

After the surgery, you will experience some discomfort. This is normal and natural for any body part that goes through surgery. You will likely experience:

  • Bruising of the skin or gum tissue around where the implant is fixed

  • Your face and gums may swell as a result

  • You will experience pain where the incision was made and implant fixed

  • Some patients may experience minor bleeding.

These symptoms should last for a few days. However, if they persist, you need to make an appointment to see your doctor to eliminate any significant issues due to the surgery. To help with the healing, your periodontist may suggest a soft foods diet and compressing the swollen areas with ice packs.

Most dental surgeries and procedures are successful, but sometimes complications may arise. Some of these may involve challenges where the bone refuses to infuse with the implant. In avoiding some of these complications, the patient will get advised to:

  • Avoid smoking or using any products with tobacco because they increase the possibility of developing infections and cause discoloration of teeth.

  • Practicing excellent oral hygiene. Ensure to brush your teeth at least two times a day and make sure to floss to remove any trapped food particles

  • Make sure you regularly visit your dentist for checkups and maintaining your dental health.

  • Stay away from practices that are damaging to your teeth, such as chewing on hard candies or ice. These habits frequently harm both the implants and teeth.

Why Dental Implants get Preferred for Full Mouth Treatment

As earlier discussed, replacing your lost teeth can be achieved using various procedures. When a person wants more natural-looking and long-lasting or permanent replacement, dental implants are the best choice. There are multiple advantages to opting for this method for your full mouth treatment. They include:

  • Dental implants help prevent bone loss. When a person loses teeth, they almost always lose bone on their jaw. For the bone to start growing back again, it needs stimulation. Dental implants are ideal for stimulating the jaw to begin regenerating the lost bone mass and help prevent further bone loss.

  • Dental implants typically match the original teeth of the patient to give them a natural look. Dental implants are in many sizes and shapes. Your dentist will ensure to design prosthetics that match the color of your original teeth, and that will fit securely in your mouth. Dental implants are very advanced such that it is almost impossible for people to know they are not your natural teeth.

  • Dental implants usually restore the bite force as it would be with your natural teeth. Because of how they get fixed to your jawbone, they give them stable support like roots do to teeth. This will enable you to enjoy eating the same things you were before you lost all your teeth.

  • Installing dental implants help maintain your facial features. Teeth naturally support the structure of your face. When you lose them, your face changes its shape, and for most people, they look older than they are. When a person gets fitted with dental implants, the new teeth will offer the same support to their facial structure as the natural teeth did.

  • Some other options of replacing lost teeth, such as dentures, can affect the patient’s speech. This means how they pronounce certain words or speak changes. However, with dental implants, there is no risk of that. Dental implants feel, look, and function like natural teeth. This makes it easier for a person that gets a full mouth treatment to keep talking as naturally and efficiently as they previously did.

  • When a patient has dental implants, they do not have the risk of developing cavities. This does not mean that one should not take care of their teeth. However, the material used in making implants cannot get subjected to decay, meaning the patient will never worry about cavities.

  • Dental implants are also easier to care for compared to other procedures of replacing lost teeth. Just as a person would floss and brush their teeth after meals, having a full mouth of dental implants will require the same care. There are no unique products to care for them or routine. All that is needed is regular toothpaste and mouthwash for cleaning and flossing at least once a day.

  • Dental implants will never cause a patient to get embarrassed compared to those with dentures. Dentures can slip when talking or eating, causing the wearer embarrassment. Dental implants are securely fitted in a person’s mouth, meaning there is no risk of them slipping or falling out.

  • Dental implants are also preferred because they offer a permanent solution to a person that has lost teeth. Permanent, in this case, means that the person will not have to keep removing and putting them back; neither will they need replacing.

Caring for your Dental Implants

When you have a full mouth of dental implants, it is as if you have a full mouth of teeth. Dental implants are the closest replacements to natural teeth. When you have these implants, you need to care for them like you would your natural teeth. Below are tips to help you in caring for your implants:

  • Clean your implants after meals using a toothbrush with soft bristles and your regular toothpaste. A toothbrush made from soft bristles is gentle to your gums and will not cause any bleeding. Brushing with a toothbrush that has hard bristles does not result in better removal of tartar and plaque. Soft-bristled toothbrushes are equally effective and gentler for you.

  • Ensure to brush your teeth after every meal or at least twice in a day. When you brush your teeth in the morning, you eliminate the bacteria that accumulated through the night and bad breath. Brushing at bedtime also removes bacteria accumulated during the day and reduces the building of more plaque and tartar.

  • Use dental floss at least once a day to remove food particles stuck between your teeth. When these particles are trapped, they encourage the buildup of bacteria that can result in gum infections.

  • Use a gentle toothbrush when brushing your teeth. Some toothpaste has harsh ingredients that can damage your crowns. There are kinds of toothpaste that are designed for people with dental crowns. Use them instead to avoid wearing down your teeth.

Find a Northridge Dental Implant Near Me

Losing your teeth can be a traumatic experience. Fortunately, you can have your mouth fully restored with dental implants and bring your confidence back. Dental implants are the most popular natural-looking teeth replacement option available today. Whether you need one tooth, several, or a full mouth treatment, you must consider dental implants. Not every dentist is, however, qualified to perform the procedure of fixing dental implants.

For this reason, you must be cautious about whom you decide to fix your lost teeth. At Northridge Dental Implant Center, we have a team of professionals qualified and experienced to carry out dental implant procedures. Book an appointment with us at 818-925-9181 and let us restore your smile.