Dental implants are a permanent and appealing solution to replace missing or extracted teeth. They are better than other alternatives like bridges because no additional teeth need to be altered to place the new tooth.
The entire implant process is performed over the course of a few months. The first part of the process is to install the implant itself, where the actual implant base is placed into the bone, replacing the root of the tooth. An incision is made in the gums so that the implant can be inserted. Multiple implants can be placed at once if necessary. After the implants are placed the gums are sutured, and the implant is covered.
The implant must be allowed about 3-6 months to heal, and during this time the bone will form around the implant in a process called osseointegration. During this healing time you can have temporary crowns installed so that you can eat and speak normally and maintain a proper aesthetic appearance for your smile.
After the implant has healed, it is time to place an abutment on the implant. The abutment serves as the base for your new tooth. One this is placed, an impression of the abutment is taken and is used to create your permanent restoration. Once the restoration is completed you can return to the office to attach the restoration permanently. Your smile will look just like it used to, and after a short period of getting used to the implant it will feel just like one of your own teeth.
Our office will refer you to a specialist who will place your implant, and then you will return to our office for the placement of the abutment and the final restoration.