A dental implant is a tiny post that is surgically placed in gum tissue where one or more teeth have been lost. One of the primary concerns when considering dental implants is whether the gum tissue is healthy enough and has sufficient bone strength to make the implant process successful.
Patients that have lost one or more teeth due to periodontal disease may have an uphill battle when determining how to replace lost teeth. When periodontal (gum) disease results in tooth loss, the bone in the gum tissue needed to fuse to the implant may already have been compromised lessening the chances for a positive outcome.
There are options to consider such as placement of natural or synthetic bone material in the hopes that bone strength becomes solid enough for implant. A sinus lift may help as it adds bone to your upper jaw making it taller; of course this only helps with implants in the upper arch.
Once the dental implant has been placed, the patient must be diligent about maintaining the surgical area by brushing and flossing daily. Although a protective cover has been placed over the implant, keeping the area as bacteria free as possible will help prevent infection, a primary cause of implant failure.
The final cosmetic restoration is affixed to the implant once your dentist has determined healing is completed and bone has fused to the implant sufficiently to provide a secure fit.
The restoration itself is often made with porcelain, a strong and stain resistant material. Dental decay is the result of bacteria permeating the enamel of a biological tooth … since your implanted tooth is now made from a non-biological material, the concern for decay no longer exists for the restored tooth.
However, concern about gum disease remains. The patient must be diligent about the daily oral hygiene routine of brushing and flossing; an anti-bacterial rinse may be recommended; regular dental visits allow your dentist to monitor the area for signs of a problem.
A dental implant can last a lifetime if the proper care is administered. Ideally keeping our natural teeth forever should be everyone’s goal; but it is a comfort to know that if one or more teeth are lost, there is a process available to replace the tooth that looks and feels like our original teeth.
To learn more about your tooth replacement options, contact the office of Dr. Philip Kozlow at 972-458-2464 and schedule your informative consultation today.