Posts for tag: Dental Implant
How implants from your dentist in Salisbury, MD can give you back your smile.
If you are missing teeth, you’ve probably looked into dental implants. The truth is, dental implants are the closest to having your natural teeth, in both appearance and how they function. There are different ways to restore a dental implant too.
Dr. Kathleen M. Geipe in Salisbury, MD offers a wide variety of dental services, including dental implants and dental implant restorations, and she can give you back your smile.
Dental implant treatment begins with placing the dental implant screw, during a simple in-office procedure. During the healing period, bone will fill in around the dental implant, locking it firmly in place.
After the area has healed, and the dental implant screw is firmly embedded, it’s time for the dental implant restoration to be placed. Common restorations include:
- A single tooth restoration, which is typically a single, high-grade dental ceramic crown
- A dental bridge restoration, which can replace more than one missing tooth; prosthetic teeth fill in the space of the missing teeth, and the dental implants, on both sides of the prosthetic teeth, receive dental implant crowns.
- An implant-supported denture, which replaces an entire arch of missing teeth; the denture is snapped in place over four to six implant screws.
Dental implants provide benefits that can’t be matched by other tooth replacement options. Consider that dental implants are:
- Virtually indistinguishable from natural teeth
- Completely stable so they won’t move around
- Conservative and help to maintain the bone in your jaw
- Easy to clean because you simply brush and floss them just like natural teeth
Consider also that dental implant restorations are made of materials that reflect light, so they look just like natural tooth enamel.
The dental implant screws are made of titanium, which is a biocompatible material that your body won’t reject. In fact, dental implants boast a success rate of over 95 percent, according to the American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons.
If you want your smile back, look no further than dental implants! To find out more about this amazing tooth replacement option, call Dr. Kathleen M. Geipe in Salisbury, MD at (410) 543-0599. Call today.
What a difference forty years can make: Dental bridges once occupied the top spot for choices to replace missing teeth until the arrival of dental implants in the 1980s. Today, dental implants are the gold standard for dental restoration.
But although bridgework may have lost “first chair” in the orchestra of restorations, it's still a viable option. In fact, it can be the best option in certain situations.
Bridges consist of a series of porcelain crowns fused together like fence pickets. The center crowns, known as the pontics, “bridge” the gap left by a missing tooth or teeth. The crowns on each end, the abutment teeth, crown the natural teeth on either side of the gap to support the bridge.
Bridges are effective and durable, but with a major downside: To accommodate the abutment crowns, we must reduce the size of the natural teeth to which they'll be attached. This alteration can weaken those teeth's structure and require them from then on to have some form of restoration. They're also at higher risk for tooth decay.
Implants, on the other hand, don't require this alteration, and may also be more durable than bridges. Why then consider a bridge?
Price can be a factor: Implants may be more expensive, especially involving multiple teeth. Keep in mind, though, that this only compares the initial cost: Because implants have a 95% or more ten-year success rate, with further evidence they could potentially last for decades, they may actually cost less in the long-run than bridge restorations that have a higher chance of being replaced sooner.
But the prime reason is that some dental situations aren't suitable for dental implants. For instance, implants require a certain amount of bone for proper placement, so people with extensive bone loss may not be able to acquire them. Health conditions like uncontrolled diabetes or a compromised immune system can also complicate implant installation. A bridge in these cases may represent a better alternative.
With the help of your dentist, you'll need to consider your individual situation, dental and financial, in deciding between an implant or a bridge. And, if a dental bridge is your best option, it will be a solid choice for restoring your missing teeth and your smile.
If you would like more information on various dental restoration methods, 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 “Crowns & Bridgework.”
What happens when you lose a tooth? In the short-run, it can certainly undermine your appearance and ability to efficiently chew and digest food. But a chain of events could also be set in motion that may cause the most harm to your appearance and health—and it all has to do with bone loss.
Our bones aren't just rigid structures providing a frame for our bodies. They're living tissue with other purposes like producing blood cells and regulating the endocrine system. Bone tissue is constantly replenishing itself as older cells die and newer ones take their place.
In the jawbone, the pressure generated by the teeth while biting and chewing travels through the roots to stimulate the growth of new bone. If a tooth goes missing, however, the bone around the tooth also loses this growth stimulus.
This can cause normal bone growth to slow so that dying bone cells aren't sufficiently replaced. The bone may then diminish at an alarming rate—a decrease in width of about 25% in the first year after a tooth loss and several millimeters in height after only a few years.
This bone loss can continue to advance, especially if multiple teeth are lost, until the jaw structure as a whole loses significant height. The bite may then collapse, forcing the front teeth to push forward. In this state, a person may not be able to adequately bite or chew food. It can also damage their appearance—their smile suffers, of course, but their entire face may also appear shrunken.
You may be able to avoid this scenario if you replace missing teeth with dental implants. In addition to their life-likeness and durability, implants can also stop or slow bone loss. This is because titanium, the principle metal used in an implant, has a strong affinity with bone: Bone cells readily grow and attach to the titanium surface and foster new growth.
But don't wait: Bone loss could eventually extend beyond what an implant can accommodate—you may then need grafting to build up the bone or consider a different type of restoration. So, speak with your dentist as soon as possible about an implant restoration for a lost tooth to help avoid significant bone loss.
If you would like more information on how tooth loss can affect your life, 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 “The Hidden Consequences of Losing Teeth.”
Dental implants are revolutionary tooth replacements because they reside in the jaw bone just as your natural tooth roots once did. But, as with any restorative work, wear takes its toll. At the Salisbury, MD, office of your dentist, Dr. Kathleen Geipe, she places and maintains implants so your smile stays complete and strong. If your dental implant crown is failing, she can fix it.
The components of a single-tooth implant
The typical dental implant has three basic parts:
- A titanium metal screw which your dentist Salisbury inserts into the jaw bone during a brief oral surgery at her Salisbury PA office
- A metal abutment or extension post
- A porcelain crown which looks and acts just like a real tooth
The titanium screw bonds with your jaw bone through a process known as osseointegration. As bone cells wrap around the implant, they create a virtually inseparable bond. Only an infection called peri-implantitis, which is similar to gum disease, or a blow to the mouth can dislodge an implant and cause it to fail.
What can happen to the implant crown
Just like a crown placed over a natural tooth, an implant crown may loosen due to oral trauma (you fall and strike your face, for example) or because of excessive forces exerted by teeth clenching (bruxism) or chewing very hard foods.
Of course, time is a factor too. All crowns, no matter their use, eventually wear out. In all these situations, your dentist Salisbury can replace the crown with a new one.
Additionally, some people experience a wobbly abutment post. This post screws into the dental implant itself and may, though rarely, loosen due to normal use or bruxism. If this occurs, your dentist can remove the crown, replace the screw, and re-mount the same crown or a new one as needed.
You can have confidence in the strength and longevity of the titanium metal implant itself. These artificial tooth roots have a high success rate--up to 98 percent, says the Institute for Dental Implant Awareness (IDIA). Plus, you should retain that implant for the rest of your life when you practice good oral hygiene habits at home and get your routine cleanings and check-ups with Dr. Geipe and her team.
Dental implants are the most reliable and effective tooth replacements available. If you have any kind of problem with yours, or if you wish to pursue the placement of a new dental implant, please contact your dentist, Dr. Kathleen Geipe, in her Salisbury MD office. Call (410) 543-0599.