How do Dental Implants Work?

The number of adults with missing teeth can be surprising.  3.75 percent of adults 20 to 64 have no remaining teeth. Older adults and current smokers are more likely to have no remaining teeth.

Whether the result came from tooth decay or injury, you may be a possible candidate for dental implants to replace those missing teeth.

With the proper care and expertise needed, dental implants can restore your smile for a potential lifetime. In certain offices the procedure is done by many different team members including the dentist, gum specialist, oral surgeon. At West Bowmanville Family Dental, we provide the dental implant procedure in Bowmanville start to finish at our office.

An examination is required to see if you are a good candidate for dental implant replacements. Some patients may not be a good candidate if they do not have sufficient jaw bone for dental implants, have uncontrolled diabetes, radiation therapy to the head and neck or are suffering from autoimmune diseases or are on medications that may compromise healing. Patients that are smokers may still be candidates for dental implant procedures, however it has been shown that the success rate of dental implants in smokers is lower.

Once the examination is complete, we will often get an approval letter from your Medical Doctor to advise them that you will be undergoing the dental implant procedure. We often get asked by patients how we can determine the number of dental implants needed and how the dental implants stay in their mouth.

First phase of dental implant procedure

The majority of dental implant procedures are done in two stages. The first stage involves the dentist placing the root portion of the dental implant into the jaw bone with a small incision into the gums. The implant is placed precisely in the location of a former tooth that was lost or if the implants are used as retentive snap ins for a potential denture then the best available jaw bone sites will be chosen.

The dentists at West Bowmanville Family Dental will place sutures (stitches) into the area. Within a week to ten days, the sutures will be removed and the area evaluated by the dentist.

It typically takes three to four months for healing of the jawbone and new jawbone formation around the dental implant. This process also known as osseointegration is in essence new jaw formation around the dental implant which keeps it firm and locked in place. Often we have to wait a longer period of time if there has been substantial jawbone being rebuilt or if the area is a soft area of jaw bone density such as in the back of the upper jaw. The dentist will inform you of your typical healing period as each case is unique.

Second phase of dental implant procedure

Once the dental implant has fused to the jawbone, the implant area is checked with an x-ray, and tested for stability prior to loading the implant with a new tooth crown (cap). The dentist will then administer local anesthetic and remove the protective cover that is around the dental implant. A longer healing cover is placed on the top of the dental implant to allow space for the gum tissue where the new tooth will be located.

In certain situations, some dentists prefer to perform the first and second stages together. Although this is possible, we have found higher success rates in staging the dental implant procedure in order to give the area the best chance for ideal healing.

For more information on what would work best for your mouth, contact our office for your free dental implant consultation!

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