Dental Implants

There’s a reason why 3 million Americans have dental implants -- and that those numbers are growing by 500,000 each year. The experienced team at MediDental Care dental clinic in Astoria, New York, offers the most advanced treatments for missing teeth, like dental implants. For permanent tooth replacement in Queens, call MediDental Care or schedule an appointment online today to learn more about dental implants

The dental implant is an effective solution when a tooth is missing.

What is a dental implant?

A dental implant is a biocompatible root that replaces the root of a tooth and supports a crown, bridge or removable prosthesis.

An implant is usually conical, made of titanium or zirconia, with a connection at the gum line to allow the attachment of crowns and bridges or a snap fastener...

Titanium is recognized as a material with high biocompatibility (no releases by the body and has, for this reason, many other applications, in addition to those dental). Many studies have shown that titanium not only is biocompatible but also facilitates the process of integrating artificial support with bone tissue, the so-called osteointegration.

Much more than aesthetic, the implant ensures better chewing, avoids the development of cavities and prevents loosening and displacement of the teeth.

The different types of dental implants

Dental implants are classified into 3 categories:

Classic implant

The classic dental implant is named after it because it is the type of implant that is placed in more than 9 out of 10 cases. This implant is 10 to 20 mm long and 1 to 3 mm in diameter. It is often conical in shape with a wider base and a rounded point tip. The implant has a thread like any screw, which gives it stability in the jaw bone. This thread can be more or less pronounced depending on the brand and model.

Short implant

A short implant is an implant whose length is less than 10 mm. These implants are used in cases where the patient does not have sufficient bone volume to place a conventional implant or in order to avoid a bone graft or sinus filling. On average, for the upper jaw, one in two patients requires a bone graft with a conventional implant and in the majority of these cases, a short implant avoids the need for bone graft . Short implants are sometimes wider or have a more pronounced thread.

Short implants are just as safe and solid as conventional implants, they hold just as well in the long term. Indeed, the solidity of an implant is not linked to its length but rather to its diameter and the implant / bone contact surface.

Short implants allow some patients to avoid bone grafting or sometimes a small bone graft is still necessary but it is then much less important. Instead of an invasive external sinus lift, a much simpler internal sinus lift may suffice.

Basal implant

Another type of implant is the basal implant, which aims to eliminate the need for bone grafting. It is not shorter, but much longer than a conventional implant, which allows it to be inserted into the bone in depth. This type of implant is sometimes 5 centimeters long. The basal implant presents certain additional risks due to its length: surgery is much more invasive and it cannot be removed easily in the event of complications. For these two reasons, this type of implant is only used as a last resort. There are quite a few surgeons who use this technique.

Who can receive a dental implant?

Dental implants are like natural teeth, even superior because they cannot be affected by cavities or an abscess of the nerve. In addition, once installed, the implants prevent bone loss and, therefore, aging of the face. The implant integration rate (success rate) depends on the quantity and quality of bone existing at the time of implantation. Statistics show a very satisfactory success rate; 85 to 90% for the upper jaw and the rear part of the lower jaw and 95 to 100% for the front part of the lower jaw. This success rate decreases by 10% for smokers.

When is an implant placed?

The surgical procedure is often simple and painless. It is done under local anesthesia in most cases as for the treatment of cavities.

The final prosthesis is made after the integration of the implant at the bone level (within 2 to 6 months). Under certain conditions, a temporary prosthesis can be put in place immediately after the placement of the implant.

The steps for placing this implant

The installation of a dental implant involves several stages:

  • The dental surgery phase: the practitioner opens the jaw and places the implant.
  • The healing phase: for several weeks, the bone will colonize the implant.
  • The prosthetic phase: the practitioner places a screw, takes a dental impression and then places a crown.

Several implants can also be placed to stabilize a complete device.

Benefits of dental implants

The dental implant has many advantages:

  • Preservation of teeth: there is no need, as in the dental bridge technique, to "decay" adjacent teeth.
  • Preservation of the bone: even if only one tooth is missing, the jaw bone shrinks. The establishment of a dental implant, therefore, preserves the bone capital of the jaw.
  • Aesthetics: a dental prosthesis placed on an implant offers the best aesthetic result compared to a natural tooth. With ceramic crown heads, there is more risk of seeing a “gray line” appear at the edge of the gum over the years.
  • Restored chewing function:
    • Each tooth has a specific function: the incisors cut, the canines tear, the premolars and the molars crush. When one or more teeth are missing, the masticatory forces are transferred to the other teeth. These stressed teeth are not always suitable and will wear out prematurely.
    • In addition, digestion will not be done properly, and it is the general state of health that will be weakened.
  • Safety: the technique for placing dental implants is well developed in the USA. The success rate of the intervention is 95%.

Indications and Contraindications

To place an implant, the volume and quality of the jaw bone must be sufficient. These parameters are in some cases evaluated using a scanner. However, it is also possible to increase bone volume using a bone graft. It is also important that the neighboring teeth and gum are healthy.

Absolute contraindications are rare: it mainly involves irradiation of the face or high risk of infectious endocarditis (infection of a valve of the heart by bacteria from the mouth).

Relative contraindications are more frequent: poor hygiene, smoking, unbalanced diabetes ...

Our advice

  • The implant replaces one or more teeth without affecting the other teeth and provides a prosthesis that is both fixed and comfortable.
  • Implants have a lifespan of several decades.
  • If you are affected, you must, like all implant holders, observe extremely strict dental hygiene and carry out checks very regularly.

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