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Dental Implants

An option for replacing missing teeth

Are you embarrassed by your smile?  Implants may be the answer!If you are self conscious about missing teeth or wearing dentures, there 's an alternative that may be right for you: dental implants. Dental implants are one option for replacing missing or badly diseased teeth. A dental implant offers comfort and stability and, by virtue of the artificial tooth it supports, is a restoration that is the closest thing to a natural tooth.

What is an Implant?

Implants are manufactured "anchors" that look like cylinders or screws. They are artificial replacements for natural tooth roots. Implants are used in upper and lower jaws. They are made of titanium and other materials that are well suited to the human body. They attach to the jawbone and gum tissue to become a stable base for one or more custom artificial replacement teeth, called dental crowns.

Dental implants have been used for several decades. Patients of all ages have chosen dental implants to replace a single tooth or several teeth or to support partial or full dentures. It's no surprise. Dental implants and their crowns help restore the ability to chew food. They help fill out a face that otherwise could look sunken because of missing teeth. Unlike dentures, implants and crowns are not removed for overnight soaking and cleaning. No adhesives are needed.

The Implant Process

Treatment generally is a three-part process that takes several months.

In the first step, the dentist surgically places the implant in the jaw, with the top of the implant slightly above the top of the bone. A screw is inserted into the implant to prevent gum tissue and other debris from entering. The gum then is secured over the implant. The implant will remain covered for approximately three to six months while it fuses with the bone, a process called "osseointegration." There may be some swelling, tenderness or both for a few days after the surgery, so pain medication usually is prescribed to alleviate the discomfort. A diet of soft foods, cold foods and warm soup is often recommended during the healing process.

In the second step, the implant is uncovered and the dentist attaches an extension, called a post, to the implant. The gum tissue is allowed to heal around the post. Some implants require a second surgical procedure in which a post is attached to connect the replacement teeth. With other implants, the implant and post are a single unit placed in the mouth during the initial surgery. Once healed, the implant and post can serve as the foundation for the new tooth.

In the third and final step, the dentist makes a crown, which has a size, shape, color and fit that will blend with your other teeth. Once completed, the crown is attached to the implant post.

Are Implants Right for You?

Who's a good candidate for implant treatment? You are, if you're in good health and have healthy gums and adequate bone to support an implant. You must be committed to thorough oral hygiene to keep your mouth healthy and to scheduling regular dental visits. Ask your dentist if implants are an option for you.

Types of Dental Implants

Single Tooth Missing

Benefits of an all-ceramic crown on implant:
When both the tooth and the root are damaged, the best permanent replacement is a dental implant in conjunction with a ceramic crown. This solution both looks and functions just like a natural tooth.

In this case, a so-called one-piece implant is used. This means that all components are installed as a single unit, resulting in immediately full functioning teeth, shorter treatment time and minimized pain.

  • Immediately functioning teeth
  • Excellent esthetics result
  • Life long, stable solution

Treatment:
This procedure normally includes four visits to the dentist. You should expect to be able to work the day after having the implant installed.

Course of Treatment

INSTALLING THE NEW TOOTH- STEP- BY- STEP

The course of treatment described here is one of several options available. Consult your dentist to find out what the best solution is for you, given your specific condition.

1. Before the procedure
The dentist makes a first examination and takes one or more x-rays of the area to prepare for the procedure.

2. Installing the implant
The implant is installed. At this time, a temporary tooth is provided that allows you to eat and function like normal almost immediately. The implant will need a few months to integrate with the jawbone before the next step is taken.

3. Attaching the new crown
The final step is the placement of the permanent ceramic tooth. The new tooth is installed for life. No additional treatment is needed.

4. End result
You should expect the new tooth to fit and function just like a natural tooth. Do your usual dental hygiene to keep the tooth and gum around it clean and healthy.

Several Teeth Missing

Benefits with fixed bridge on implant:
In this case, when replacing three teeth in the far back of the mouth, a fixed bridge anchored to dental implants is the only fixed alternative. Traditional dentures can't offer the same stability or function.

Having dental implants replacing your lost back teeth will give you new, unparalleled strength and stability that allows you to eat what you want. It will also preserve your jawbone and facial appearance.

  • The only fixed alternative in this situation.
  • A stable, secure solution that lets you eat what you want
  • Preserve your facial appearance and prevents bone loss

Treatment:
After the initial examination, you can expect 4-5 additional visits until the final fixed bridge is permanently attached. It is normal to experience some minor bruising and swelling in the gum and soft tissue afterwards. Any discomfort is usually treated with an ordinary painkiller. You should expect to be able to work the next day.

Course of Treatment

INSTALLING THE FIXED BRIDGE-STEP-BY-STEP

The course of treatment described here is one of the several options available. Consult your dentist to find out what the best solution is for you, given your specific condition.

1: Before the procedure
Three teeth at back end of the mouth are missing. The only real replacement alternative is installing a fixed bridge. The bridge contains all teeth in one piece and is anchored on dental implants.

2: Installing the implants
First, the implants are installed. This is normally done in a single session. A temporary bridge may be placed at the time, making it possible for you to function like normal almost immediately after leaving the dentist.

3: Attaching the bridge
The implants need to integrate with the jawbone before the permanent bridge is attached. This is normally done 1-2 months after the implant installation. The time will vary, depending on the teeth affected and the esthetical demands.

4: End result
The new bridge will handle all the pressure that your strong, natural back teeth did. You will have a stable and secure solution that allows you to eat what you want.

All Teeth Missing

Benefits with fixed bridges on implants:
When all teeth are missing or in such condition that they need to be replaced, a fixed bridge anchored to dental implants is the best permanent solution.

Before dental implants, there were no fixed solution for people who lost all their teeth. Today, it is possible to replace a full jaw with dental implants and a fixed bridge that results in a permanent, stable and high esthetic solution.

  • Lets you eat and function like having natural teeth
  • A solid, stable solution that will serve you for life
  • Preserve your facial appearance and prevents bone loss

Treatment:
The treatment procedure and number of visits is largely dependent on the specific conditions. With some modern esthetic dentistry the entire treatment can take 4 patient visits. Using a conventional treatment approach, the treatment can take 8-10 visits. Most patients report that they were much more comfortable following the procedure that they had anticipated.

Course of Treatment

INSTALLING THE FIXED BRIDGE-STEP-BY-STEP

The course of treatment described here is one of several options available. Consult your dentist to find out what the best solution is for you, given your specific condition.

1: Before the procedure
The dentist determines what needs to be done and prepares both himself and the patient for the coming treatment procedure.

2: Installing the implants
The first step is installing dental implants to replace the lost tooth roots. In this case, five implants are used. Temporary teeth are attached that enable you eat and function like normal while waiting for the permanent bridge to be installed.

3: Attaching the bridge
The final bridge is securely installed on top of the implants. With a full jaw replacement like this, it normally takes 2-3 visits to have the bridge completely attached.

4: End result
Your new teeth should be hard to tell from natural – both for you and others. People who have had traditional dentures before getting a fixed bridge often describe this as an overwhelming and very positive experience.

 

Product Risk Information

Nobel Biocare Implant and Esthetic Solutions

Nobel Biocare manufactures dental implants from biocompatible titanium. Nobel Biocare implants are supplied with different types of titanium and hydroxy apatite surfaces. Nobel Biocare dental implants are intended for use in either the upper and/or the lower jaw to support prosthetic devices, such as artificial teeth. They function to restore the physical appearance and the chewing function of patients with partial or full tooth loss. Nobel Biocare's dental implants are indicated for integration with the bones of patients. They enable restorations that range from replacement of one single tooth to an entire arch of bridgework or as stabilizing elements for overdenture applications.

Nobel Biocare also manufactures restorative components from ceramics, titanium, polymers and gold alloy. For example, Procera and NobelRondo products are made from biocompatible ceramics, zirconia, alumina, and/or porcelains.

Nobel Biocare's line of Procera products includes crowns, bridges, laminates, and abutments. The Procera products are used in the restoration of existing teeth, the replacement of missing teeth, or the restoration of dental implants. Procera crowns may replace one single tooth or an entire arch of bridgework.

NobelRondo is dental ceramic porcelain used to finish a crown, bridge, or veneer to achieve desired colors and consistency of finish.

Precautions for Restorative Treatment

Prerestorative patient evaluation is necessary to determine any factors that put the patient at risk from the restoration placement procedure itself or factors that may affect healing capacities of the associated soft tissue. Restorative design must accommodate individual patient conditions such as bruxism (grinding or clenching of teeth) or unfavorable jaw relationships to reduce the risk of overload or fatigue failure and treatment is contraindicated if adequate accommodation cannot be accomplished. Please consult your dentist for more information on treatment planning and medical evaluation.

Precautions for Implant Treatment

Nobel Biocare dental implants should not be used in patients who are medically unfit to participate in a general oral surgical procedure. Prior to receiving Nobel Biocare dental implants, patients must undergo a medical evaluation to determine whether the implant placement procedure would pose any health risks, and whether any factors exist, that may affect the healing capacities of either their bones or their associated soft tissues. Patients who have medical or other conditions that may interfere with the healing process of either their bones or soft tissues (e.g., connective tissue disorders, steroid therapy, bone infections, cigarette smoking) must carefully evaluate, with their dentists, the potential risks and benefits of using dental implants.

Nobel Biocare dental implants should not be used in patients that have inadequate amounts of residual bone to permit placement of implants in sufficient size and numbers to support their biomechanical loads. Mechanical failures, including fatigue fracture of implants, prosthetic screws, and/or abutment screws, may occur if dental implants are insufficient in size or number to support their biomechanical loads, or are not properly positioned. To reduce the risk of overload or fatigue failure, dentists must place the implants and design prosthetics to accommodate the physical or medical conditions of their patients, such as bruxism (i.e., grinding or clenching of teeth) or unfavorable jaw relationships. Nobel Biocare dental implants should not be used if dentists cannot adequately accommodate an individual patient's physical or medical conditions. Please consult your dentist for more information on treatment planning and medical evaluation.

 

Common Questions About Dental Implants

What is a dental implant?
A dental implant is a small titanium fixture that serves as the replacement for the root portion of a missing natural tooth. The implant is placed in the upper or lower jaw. It will bond with the bone over time and thus serve as an anchor for the replacement tooth. Dental implants can be used to replace a single lost tooth or many missing teeth.

Are dental implants successful?
With more than three decades of clinical experience and over a million patients treated, statistics confirm a success rate of nearly 95 percent for individual implants*, even higher for the bridges they support. * Results based on implants and bridges remaining and in function over a five-year period.

How much do implants cost?
The fee for tooth replacement with dental implants will depend on several factors, including the number of teeth being replaced and the number of implants required to support your replacement teeth. Some additional procedures may be required prior to the placement of your dental implants to ensure the long-term health of your dental implants. Typically, there is a fee for the surgical procedure and a separate fee for attaching the posts and constructing your replacement teeth. To obtain a specific fee estimate, it is necessary to have a doctor examine your mouth. After a thorough diagnostic examination, your dentist will recommend the treatment that is best for you.

Who is a Candidate

Will dental implants work for me?
Anyone who is missing one or more teeth due to injury, disease or decay may be a candidate for dental implants. The main limitation is the amount of available bone. Your dentist is the best person to evaluate whether dental implants are a viable solution for you.

Is old age a problem?
Occasionally, older patients express concern that their age may prevent them from enjoying the benefits of dental implants. However, health is more of a determining factor than age. If you're healthy enough to have a tooth extracted, you're probably healthy enough to receive dental implants. Certain chronic diseases may contraindicate implant treatment. Your dentist will determine if you are a candidate for dental implants after a careful evaluation of your dental and health history.

Benefits over Traditional Treatment

What are the advantages of dental implants over dentures or a bridge?
 • Improved appearance: When you lose entire tooth - crown and root - shrinkage of the jawbone may cause your face to look older. Dental implants can stop this process. A traditional denture or bridge doesn't.
 • Maintained natural teeth: With traditional practices, two teeth adjacent to a missing tooth must be ground down to anchor a bridge. Dental implants often eliminate the need to modify healthy teeth.
 • Permanent solution: There are no loose parts to worry about. The implant is stable and comfortable. No adjustment is need after installation. Normally, it will serve its owner for life.

Expected Results

How will dental implants affect my life?
Implant-supported replacement teeth look, feel and function like natural teeth. This means that you can eat and drink whatever you are used to. You can continue smoking as well, if you must. But most importantly, dental implants often improve quality of life in a very concrete way. People who have felt embarrassed and worried because of their tooth problems are often overwhelmed by what new permanent teeth can do for their self-esteem.

Will my new teeth look natural?
When dental implants are used in combination with modern restorative dentistry, their appearance, comfort and function are very likely to exceed your expectations.

Will I be able to chew with the same force and pressure I use with my natural teeth?
Yes. Following a brief adaptation period, chewing capacity is comparable to that of natural teeth.

Treatment and Care

How much time is required for an implant placement?
Traditionally, the procedure has been performed in two steps. The dentist began by installing the implant, which was left for from three to six months to heal and integrate with the jawbone. During the healing period, the patient was given a temporary prosthesis until the permanent crown could be put in place.

Today, there is an alternative to the two-step method that allows you to have the implant installed in one whole piece in one single session. This new method has simplified the procedure a lot, both for patients and dentists.

The procedure is chosen depends on several factors, such as the patient's dental health, the number of teeth involved and which teeth are replaced. These factors will also determine the total number of visits to the dentist throughout the treatment period.

Is the treatment painful?
Just as with any surgery, there can be some discomfort. Anesthesia and patient sedation are used to eliminate any discomfort at the time of the procedure. Most patients report that they were much more comfortable following the procedure than they had anticipated. Your doctor will prescribe medications to ease any discomfort that may occur. Ask your dentist to recommend another patient who has already had tooth replacement therapy to assess their personal experience.

How will I feel after the treatment?
It is normal to have some small bruises and swelling in the gum and soft tissues. But usually the discomfort, if any, is treated with an ordinary painkiller. You should expect to be able to work the next day.

How will I care for my implants?
Your new teeth must be cared for and checked regularly, just like your natural teeth. Brush and floss as recommended by your dentist or dental hygienist. See your dentist in every sixth month, or more frequently if so advised.

Read All About It!Dr. Max Buchwald is great with children. Kids love him. Adults too! See the newspaper article in the Dallas Morning News reporting the way Dr. Max works with kids so they are not afraid of the dentist and like to come for check ups. He takes the fear out of going to the dentist.

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