What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel, and function like natural teeth. The person who has lost teeth regains the ability to eat and can smile with confidence, knowing that teeth appear natural and that facial contours will be preserved. Implants are tiny titanium posts that are placed into the jaw bone where teeth are missing. The implant essentially replaces the root of the missing tooth. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. Dental implants can also help preserve facial structure, preventing the bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are missing.
Dental implants are changing the way people live! With this type of tooth replacement, people are rediscovering the comfort and confidence to eat, speak, laugh, and enjoy life.
How Do We Evaluate the Need for Dental Implants?
If, like many others, you feel implant dentistry is the choice for you, we ask that you undergo a dental/radiographic examination and health history. During these consultation visits, your specific needs and considerations will be addressed by either Dr. Foley or Dr. Jacobson or by an implant specialist referred by our practice. Your questions and concerns are important to us and our team will work with you very closely to help make your procedure a success.
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How Are Implants Placed in the Mouth?
Dental implants are metal anchors that act as tooth root substitutes. They are surgically placed into the jaw bone. Small posts are then attached to the implant, which protrude through the gums. These posts provide stable anchors for artificial replacement teeth.
For most patients, the placement of dental implants involves two surgical procedures. First, dental implants are placed within your jaw bone. For the first three to six months following surgery, the implants are hidden beneath the surface of the gums, gradually bonding with the jaw bone.
After the dental implant has bonded to the jaw bone, the second phase begins. The surgeon will uncover the implants and attach a small healing collar. Drs. Foley or Jacobson can then start making the new teeth. First, an impression must be taken in our office. We send the impression and additional information (like a bite registration and the shade) to our lab, and they fabricate the new tooth or teeth that will be screwed into the implant. The entire procedure usually takes four to six months, depending on the number of teeth to be replaced and the overall health of the patient. Most patients do not experience any disruption in their daily life.