A NEW WAY OF LIVING
SOLUTION TO A TROUBLESOME PROBLEM
pleasures can cause problems and pain for the millions of adults
who suffer from permanent tooth loss. Men and women of all ages
are self-conscious about their dentures, bridges or missing teeth.
Some have difficulty speaking because their dentures slip or click.
For others, the irritation and pain caused by dentures are constant
reminders of the limitations they feel. Many are concerned about
their appearance and may feel that their tooth loss has "aged
them" before their time. Some regularly decline invitations
to social events because they are unwilling to face the uncertainties
of eating, speaking and laughing in public. Many can no longer
enjoy their favorite foods, nor the social interaction with family
and friends that accompanies special meals.
and more people are putting an end to these problems by choosing
dental implants, a revolutionary way to replace missing teeth.
Dental implants offer an excellent alternative to the limitations
of conventional dentures, bridges and missing teeth. Dental implants
are changing the way people live. With them, people are rediscovering
the comfort and confidence to eat, speak, laugh and enjoy life.
WHY ARE PEOPLE CHOOSING DENTAL IMPLANTS?
survey of oral and maxillofacial surgeons found that patient interest
and demand has grown significantly.
implant use has nearly tripled since 1986 and is expected
to continue to rise rapidly.
of all ages are turning to dental implants to replace a single
tooth, several teeth or a full set of dentures
reasons cited for choosing dental implants are:
restore normal eating and speaking abilities
enhance facial appearance and confidence
increase denture retention
to the survey, the reasons for the increased demand are:
public awareness of the significant functional and aesthetic
advantages of dental implants over conventional dentures and
availability of data on the long-term success of dental implants
predict that the demand for the procedure will continue
to grow as people become more familiar with the benefits
of dental implants.
AN ALTERNATIVE TO NATURAL TEETH
are a great option for patients missing natural teeth, because
they act as a secure anchor for artificial replacement teeth and
eliminate the instability associated with surface adhesives and
removable bridges. Your natural teeth absorb biting pressure of
up to 540 lbs. per square inch. Long-time denture-wearers can
often absorb no more than 50 lbs. per square inch. Dental implants,
when properly placed, can withstand 450 lbs. per square inch of
biting pressure. Dental implants are made of materials that are
compatible with human bone and tissue. The implants are surgically
placed directly into or on top of the jawbone. Small posts are
then attached to the implants which protrude through the gums.
These posts provide stable anchors for artificial replacement
Implants Fit Patient Needs
on patient needs, a single tooth, a partial bridge or a full set
of replacement teeth are fitted to the implants and lock in place
over the protruding posts. In appearance and in function, implants
are the closest thing to natural teeth and a good alternative
to conventional dentures. Implants eliminate the day-to-day frustrations
and pain of ill-fitting dentures. They allow people to enjoy a
healthy and varied diet without the restrictions many denture-wearers
face. With a sense of renewed self-confidence, many people rediscover
the excitement of an active life-style shared with family and
friends and the chance to speak dearly and comfortably with co-workers.
For all these reasons, people with dental implants often say they
feel better ... they look better ... they live better.
WHAT TO EXPECT
An oral and
maxillofacial surgeon can determine if you are a candidate for
dental implants. You will be evaluated based upon a number of
things including dental health, life-style, jawbone quality and
oral hygiene habits. In close consultation with your own dentist,
the oral and maxillofacial surgeon can plan your dental implant
surgery is often done in an oral and maxillofacial surgeon's office.
In some cases, the procedure is done in a hospital or ambulatory
surgery center. In any event, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon
can determine the most appropriate setting based on your individual
For most patients, the placement of dental implants involves two
surgical procedures. First, the implants are surgically placed
into or on top of your jawbone. These small devices make up the
framework needed to securely hold replacement teeth. For the first
three to six months following surgery, the implants are beneath
the surface of the gums, gradually bonding with the jawbone. During
this time, you should be able to wear temporary dentures and eat
a soft diet.
patients do report minor pain and swelling immediately after the
procedure but most experience no change in their daily routines.
While the implants are bonding with the jawbone, new replacement
teeth are fashioned by your dentist The replacement teeth must
clip onto the implants, fit securely in the mouth and withstand
the day-to-day movement and pressure created by chewing and speaking.
So, it is important that they are created by a dentist with proper
training in restorative techniques.
Once the implants
have bonded to the jawbone, the second phase of the procedure
begins. At this time, the oral and maxillofacial surgeon uncovers
the implants and attaches small posts which will act as anchors
for the artificial teeth. The posts protrude through the gumline
but are not visible when artificial teeth are attached.
The entire Process, from evaluation to completion, generally takes
six to eight months. During this time, most patients do not experience
any disruption in their normal business and social activities.
Because dental implants are made of materials that are compatible
with human bone, there is little chance for an allergic reaction
in the body. However, implants can fail when proper oral hygiene
techniques are not used. Dental implants require special individual
care. Proper brushing, flossing, rinsing and regular check-ups
are critical to the long-term success of your implants.
A TEAM EFFORT
implants are a relatively simple procedure, they generally warrant
the expertise of two dental professionals - an oral and maxillofacial
surgeon and a restorative dentist.
a team, the oral and maxillofacial surgeon and restorative dentist
can determine if you are a candidate for implants and design an
appropriate treatment plan. A restorative dentist, with training
in dental implants, creates the replacement teeth. He or she prepares
the necessary molds and works with a dental laboratory to make
sure that the denture or bridge will meet the particular needs
of each patient. Additionally, dental implant patients should
see a dentist for routine follow-up care and maintenance.
An oral and
maxillofacial surgeon is a dental specialist who surgically treats
the mouth and jaw area. Following dental school, an oral and maxillofacial
surgeon completes several additional years of training in a hospital
residency program and is trained to administer and monitor all
types of anesthesia needed for oral surgery procedures.
START A NEW WAY OF LIVING TODAY
If you are
among the millions of Americans who suffer from permanent tooth
loss, you can eliminate the problems and pain caused by dentures,
bridges or missing teeth. You can begin to rediscover the joy
of eating healthy, speaking clearly and laughing comfortably.
Take the first step. Get the facts about dental implants. See
your dentist or a member of the American Association of Oral and
Maxillofacial Surgeons. With their training and expertise, they
can determine if dental implants are right for you.