Implants are one of the best innovations made in dental technology. They have allowed thousands of people to regain confidence because they corrected problems with dentures and have replaced missing or damaged teeth. This allows you to smile without worrying about how your poor dental health appears to others.
An implant is a titanium rod that is screwed into your jaw and acts as an anchor for a false tooth. You may have crowns, which are false teeth made of various materials and placed on the remains of the broken or damaged tooth. Implants work in much the same way with the rod acting as the damaged tooth and a crown placed on top of it. So how does it work?
How Does an Implant Work?
When you get an implant, Dr. Cunnington will screw the titanium post into your jawbone. Once in it needs time to heal. During the healing process, the bone from your jaw grows around the implant strengthening its placement. The bone that grows around the implant makes the placement of the implant more secure. This process is called osseointegration which means “combines with the bone.”
This healing and integration process take time, which varies among patients. Everyone’s healing abilities are different. It could take several months before it is completely integrated. Once the implant is integrated, we will place the crown over the rod, and voila, you again have a tooth. Like any crown, the material is matched to the color of the surrounding teeth, and by the time we are finished, you’ll wonder which tooth is real and which one is a crown.
Can Anyone Get a Dental Implant?
For the most part, anyone can get a dental implant. You must be in fairly good health, however, because if you don’t heal well, you may not get a good result from your implant. You also have to have healthy gums and sufficient bone mass to hold the implant. You have to keep in mind that an implant is considered dental surgery so your dentist will have the same concerns about your ability to handle surgery that your primary care physician would have.
We will take into account your allergies, infections, bleeding disorders, existing medical conditions and prescribed medications. Once we determine that the outcome of the implant won’t be adversely affected by any of the above, we can move forward with the implant procedure.
If you are a heavy smoker, you may not be a candidate for an implant. Smoking causes problems with the healing process. If you suffer from diabetes, you may also have problems with an implant because diabetes itself interferes with the healing process. If you have heart disease, you may still be able to get an implant, but your case will be evaluated thoroughly before you get the green light.
Implants experience a high success rate and as with any surgery, there is no 100% guarantee, but if you go to a reputable and experienced dentist such as you find at Cunnington Dental, some of the potential problems will be reduced or eliminated.
Schedule an appointment with us by calling (360) 926-0880 to see if you are a candidate for dental implants.