Posts for tag: dental implants
Close the gaps in your smile with dental implants. Dental implants can be used to hold artificial teeth, such as bridgework or dental crowns, securely in place. Dental implants are sturdy metal posts anchored to the jaw bone that take the place of a natural tooth root. If you have gaps in your smile where teeth are missing, dental implants can help. At Lake Oswego Smiles, Dr. Colin Smith is your dentist for dental implants in Lake Oswego, OR.
Dental Implants Procedure
Dental implants are attached to the jaw bone through a minor surgical procedure. Over time, the dental implant permanently fuses with the jaw bone through a process called osseointegration. The process of osseointegration can take a few months. Once the area has healed and osseointegration is complete, either a dental crown or bridgework can be attached to the dental implant. A dental crown is ideal when only a single tooth needs replacement. Bridgework replaces multiple missing teeth. The dental implant holds both options securely in place.
Benefits of Dental Implants
Dental implants offer several benefits. In addition to serving as anchors for replacement teeth and closing the gaps in your smile, dental implants also restore normal tooth functioning while reducing strain on surrounding teeth that had been compensating for missing ones. Your dentist for dental implants in Lake Oswego can tell you if they are a good option for you. Some of the benefits of dental implants include:
- Closing the gaps in your smile
- Anchoring dental crowns or bridgework in place
- Restoring normal biting and chewing functions
- Reducing the additional strain on other teeth
- Hypoallergenic and durable
You can finally close the gaps in your smile where teeth are missing with dental implants. Dental implants hold artificial teeth permanently in place so there is no worry about slippage or coming loose. For dental implants in Lake Oswego, OR, schedule an appointment with Dr. Smith by calling Lake Oswego Smiles at (503) 635-3653.
Is a dental implant in your future? Dr. Colin Smith, your Lake Oswego, OR dentist, shares a few reasons you should consider this innovative tooth replacement option.
Implants improve your self-esteem
A missing tooth might sound like a relatively minor problem, but it can have a big impact on your self-confidence and self-esteem. When there's a gap in your smile, it's not unusual to feel reluctant to smile or even speak much in front of other people. Dental implants restore your tooth and give your self-esteem a much-needed boost.
Dental implants restore your entire tooth
Dental implants are the only restoration option that replaces the entire tooth. The implant itself takes the place of your tooth roots and permanently fuses to your jawbone. Once fusing occurs, your dentist attaches a crown to the top of the implant. Bridges, the other popular tooth replacement option, only replace the visible portion of teeth.
Root replacement is one of the most important benefits of dental implants. Your new implant offers an exceptionally stable foundation for your crown, which means it won't slip and irritate your gums when you eat. The implant also keeps your jawbone strong and healthy by stimulating the bone.
Implants are a good option no matter how many teeth you've lost
Dental implants aren't just a good solution if you've lost one or two teeth. They can also be used to replace all of your teeth. Just six to eight implants are needed to support an upper or lower implant-supported denture. Since your dentures are firmly attached to the implants, they offer improved comfort and chewing ability.
An implant is probably the less expensive option in Lake Oswego
Cost is definitely a concern when you consider tooth replacement options. Many people are surprised to learn that dental implants are often less expensive than bridges or dentures when long-term costs are considered. You may need new bridges and dentures several times throughout your life, but your Lake Oswego doctor will probably never need to replace your dental implants.
Dental implants are an excellent tooth replacement choice! Call Dr. Smith, your Lake Oswego, OR dentist, at (503) 635-3653 to schedule an appointment to find out if implants are right for you.
Everyone knows that George Washington wore false teeth. Quick, now, what were our first President's dentures made of?
Did you say wood? Along with the cherry tree, that's one of the most persistent myths about the father of our country. In fact, Washington had several sets of dentures — made of gold, hippopotamus tusk, and animal teeth, among other things — but none of them were made of wood.
Washington's dental troubles were well documented, and likely caused some discomfort through much of his life. He began losing teeth at the age of 22, and had only one natural tooth remaining when he took office. (He lost that one before finishing his first term.) Portraits painted several years apart show scars on his cheeks and a decreasing distance between his nose and chin, indicating persistent dental problems.
Dentistry has come a long way in the two-and-a-half centuries since Washington began losing his teeth. Yet edentulism — the complete loss of all permanent teeth — remains a major public health issue. Did you know that 26% of U.S. adults between 65 and 74 years of age have no natural teeth remaining?
Tooth loss leads to loss of the underlying bone in the jaw, making a person seem older and more severe-looking (just look at those later portraits of Washington). But the problems associated with lost teeth aren't limited to cosmetic flaws. Individuals lacking teeth sometimes have trouble getting adequate nutrition, and may be at increased risk for systemic health disorders.
Fortunately, modern dentistry offers a number of ways that the problem of tooth loss can be overcome. One of the most common is still — you guessed it — removable dentures. Prosthetic teeth that are well-designed and properly fitted offer an attractive and practical replacement when the natural teeth can't be saved. Working together with you, our office can provide a set of dentures that feel, fit, and function normally — and look great too.
There are also some state-of-the art methods that can make wearing dentures an even better experience. For example, to increase stability and comfort, the whole lower denture can be supported with just two dental implants placed in the lower jaw. This is referred to as an implant supported overdenture. This approach eliminates the need for dental adhesives, and many people find it boosts their confidence as well.
If you have questions about dentures, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Removable Full Dentures” and “Implant Overdentures for the Lower Jaw.”
Q: I’ve heard about dental implants, but I’m still not sure exactly what they are. Can you explain?
A: It’s no wonder you’ve heard of them: Dental implants have been called the most exciting advance in dentistry in the last 50 years! Essentially, the implant itself is a small, screw-shaped post that is placed in the jaw bone (underneath the gums), and serves as a replacement for the tooth’s roots. It is attached to a lifelike crown (a replacement for the visible part of the tooth) via a sturdy connector called an abutment. Dental implants offer results that can last a lifetime, and have the highest documented success rate of any tooth replacement system — over 95%.
Q: How does a dental implant work?
A: A few decades ago, it was discovered that titanium metal has a unique property: It can actually become fused to living bone tissue in a process called osseointegration. Implants are made of titanium, and take advantage of this feature. Solidly anchored in place by both osseointegration and mechanical forces, dental implants provide a strong and durable base for several different kinds of natural-looking and fully functional replacement teeth.
Q: What are dental implants used for?
A: One dental implant can be used to replace just one missing tooth with a crown that matches your own teeth. Two or more dental implants can be used to support a fixed bridge (a series of three or more replacement teeth) without requiring any work to be done on the adjacent, healthy teeth. Four or more implants can support an entire arch (complete top or bottom set) of replacement teeth that won’t slip and will never need to be removed — a great alternative to traditional removable dentures! Implants can also be used to support some kinds of removable dentures, and in certain orthodontic procedures.
Q: What is the procedure for getting a dental implant?
A: The implant process begins with a consultation, a thorough exam, and a set of diagnostic images. Placing one or more implants involves minor surgery, which is typically performed in the dental office and requires only local anesthesia. After the area has been numbed, a small opening is made in the tissue of gums and jaw bone, and the implant is carefully inserted. In some situations, a temporary replacement tooth may be placed on the implant immediately; otherwise, the implant will be allowed to rest for a period of weeks. In either case, the permanent replacement teeth will be secured to the implants at a subsequent visit.
Q: What are the advantages of an implant over other tooth replacement methods?
A: We already mentioned the high success rate and the long life of dental implants. Another advantage is the fact that implants stop the deterioration of bone in the jaw that inevitably follows tooth loss. Bone loss, a “hidden” consequence of tooth loss, is what tends to make people who are missing teeth look older than they really are. Implants need no special care beyond what you would give your natural teeth, and their longevity can make them a cost-effective investment in the long term. Plus, they look, function and “feel” just like your natural teeth.
If you’d like to find out more about dental implants, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also read the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Dental Implants” and “The Hidden Consequences of Losing Teeth.”
If you’re missing a tooth, you’re not alone; in fact 35 million Americans are missing all of their teeth in at least one jaw! Whether it’s one tooth or many, it’s important to replace what’s missing. Depending on the number of teeth lost, the potential drawbacks to doing nothing may become hard to ignore: impediments to eating, interference with speech, and unaesthetic appearance, for example.
Traditional bridges and dentures are the most affordable options for replacing teeth. Tooth implants — tiny titanium, screw-like substitutes for a tooth’s natural root to which natural-looking dental crowns are attached — are pricier but offer an important extra benefit. In addition to addressing the common problems previously mentioned, by acting like the original tooth root, an implant can maintain or stimulate “remodeling,” of the jawbone below. Without a tooth root to provide stimulation, mature bone cells will continue to be removed, or resorbed, but no new bone cells will regenerate to replace them, leading to a progressive loss of bone width, height and density. The more teeth are lost, and with less bone structure to support it, the whole shape of the face can change.
Unfortunately, when greater numbers of teeth must be replaced, implants can become financially unrealistic for some people. But in appropriate cases there is a third option: a bridge or denture/implant hybrid. In the case of a bridge intended to fill a gap when multiple teeth are missing, an implant can be used on either side of the gap to support the bridge, leaving the natural teeth undisturbed. Strategically placed implants can be used to support a removable denture, too.
If you would like more information about dental implants, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Dental Implants: Your Best Option For Replacing Teeth.”