Implants have been a part of dentistry in this country since the 1980s, yet some mystery remains. As a Board-certified Doctor of Dental Surgery, Dr. Sameet Koppikar is well-qualified to answer questions about dental implants, putting his Phoenix patients at ease about this tremendous advance in tooth replacement.
What is an implant?
A tooth has a root that extends into jawbone, stabilizing the crown, which is visible above the gum line. A dental implant replaces the root of a missing tooth. An implant restoration is a dental crown attached to the implant. These two parts fully restore the look and function of a natural tooth.
Is the procedure painful?
Treatment is well-tolerated. Although implantation is an oral surgery, meticulous, computerized preplanning allows it to be completed quickly and precisely. The mouth is thoroughly numbed, and Biltmore Dental Center offers the option of sedation in the care of a Board-certified dental anesthesiologist. This can be a good choice for the patient having an implant placed at the time of extraction, multiple implants, or anyone who is nervous about the surgery.
Placement of an implant requires only a small soft tissue incision, which Dr. Koppikar may close with sutures. It typically heals within a day or two. Over several months’ time, bone fuses with the implant, forming a solid base for the restoration. There is normally no discomfort during this part of the healing process.
When it is time to place the restoration, the doctor creates a tiny soft tissue opening and inserts an abutment into the implant. The crown is cemented to this post for support. Again, a bit of numbing makes this final step non-traumatic.
Do dental implants look natural?
Absolutely! No other tooth replacement method – a partial denture or a dental crown – looks more like your own tooth. With CEREC technology on site, Dr. Koppikar may be able to fabricate the restoration from a solid block of dental ceramic material. In some cases, the crown is fabricated from porcelain at an off-site lab. In either case, the shape, shade, and luster are indistinguishable from your other teeth.
How is treatment beneficial?
- Looks like your own tooth.
- Restores ability to chew foods efficiently.
- Allows clear speech.
- Easy to care for – simply brush and floss normally, and keep up with regular checkups at Biltmore Dental Center.
- The implant can last a lifetime with good oral hygiene.
- Should you ever damage the restoration, a new crown can easily be made to replace it.
- A denture or bridge sits on top of gum tissue. Because the implant becomes part of your body, it replicates an important function of the tooth root – bone stimulation. Each time you bite down, the implant signals the body to preserve strong, dense bone. This maintains healthy oral structure, preventing bone from dissolving. That helps to keep facial features full and youthful, and reduces skin wrinkling on the lower portion of the face.
Do you have more questions about dental implants? Schedule a consultation at our Phoenix office. The number is (602) 954-8200.