CT-Guided Dental Implant Services
What is a dental implant and how would it help me?
Many people may have heard of dental implants, but this is a common question. It is best explained with an analogy…
If you are rebuilding a house that has been destroyed by a tornado, your first job would be to check the foundation. If the foundation is gone, your first step would be to pour a new foundation. For that first step, you would need solid ground in which to lay the foundation.
Similarly, if a tooth is hopeless, meaning it is decayed and or has cracked roots, it is time to remove that root and put in an artificial root. First, the jaw bone has to be evaluated to make sure it is solid, can reliably support that root (the implant), and the tooth which will be supported by that implant.
So, an implant is sort of an artificial root made up of surgical grade titanium. The implant supports what is called an abutment, which is attached to the implant, which supports the artificial crown of a tooth.
So, your implant is your foundation of your house, your abutment is comparable to the walls that make up the house, and the crown is the roof and shingles covering the house.
Dental implants and Dentures
We can substantially improve your quality of life by replacing your dentures or full or partial plate with replacement teeth. Not only do dental implants look, feel and function like your natural teeth, but they also strengthen the underlying bone support. Being that the resorption that occurs under a denture or removable bridge is what contributes most to the aging facial appearance of denture wearers, implants can make you look and feel younger.
When teeth are lost, removable false teeth, (dentures, plates, partials) can be a replacement. They may look the part, but the people wearing them are most of the time very uncomfortable. Dentures can move around, food gets stuck underneath them, and they may loosen at the most embarrassing times. You have to remove them before going to bed. With today’s technology, no one needs to suffer with the embarrassment of denture adhesives, the instability of teeth that move or the adverse health consequences of inefficient chewing. Properly planned, the transition from a full or partial denture to a fully implant-supported permanent restoration can be seamless. Since there is no need for you to be without your denture at any time throughout the process, even a spouse has no reason to know of the change. With dental implants, you can chew normally and care for your tooth or teeth in the same way you do for your natural teeth.
Another option would be an implant-supported denture or partial denture, which would afford the denture wearer a lot more stability that the typical tissue-borne denture. The implants are placed with attachments on them, which the denture snaps into, resulting in a much more balanced and retentive situation for both chewing and esthetics. Many times we can use your current denture for this process, altering the tissue side of the denture to snap onto the attachments in the implant.
How do dental implants work for single and multiple tooth replacement?
Dental implants function as a permanent replacement for your tooth root. When used to replace a single tooth, a ceramic crown is attached to the implant, acting as your own tooth. The implant itself is a titanium screw that Dr. Jessica Logan will surgically place into your jaw bone, replacing the root of your tooth. Titanium is very strong and bio compatible. The implant fuses with your jaw bone, making it stable and permanent, just like a natural tooth.
Your artificial tooth will be custom crafted to look just like your natural tooth, or better, and to match up perfectly with the opposing tooth. It will be made from dental porcelain, which interacts with light in the same way as natural tooth enamel, so it looks like a real tooth and blends in with surrounding teeth.
How are implants placed? Does it hurt?
Here at Integrated Dental Aesthetics, we start with a comprehensive approach to every implant case. We would like to know all of the facts before starting a treatment plan. We take a Dental CT scan, which we have right here in the office. This new breakthrough 3D technology allows us to plan your implant surgery using a powerful computer program. That’s right, the first part of your surgery takes place on a computer!
So we ask ourselves, where exactly do we want to place the crown? We mark the areas we would like crowns, and now we have the information about your jaw bone in exquisite 3 dimension detail. We can see exactly where your hard and soft tissue is, the height and width, and where all of your vital structures are, including your nerves, blood vessels, and sinuses. We can view everything in relation to where we would like to place the implant, eliminating any guesswork. Once all of our planning is done, this data is used by software to allow a surgical guide to be made, which aligns us every step of the way during placement of the implants. It tells us where exactly the implant should go, how wide, deep and at what angulation it should be placed.
All of the planning is done before the surgery, so the actual day of surgery is fast and anti-climatic, done before you know it!
The surgical guide is placed into your mouth the day of surgery after anesthetizing the area, just like for a filling. Through the guide hole on the surgical guide, a tissue punch is used to take a divot of tissue out, just large enough to place the implant. Then, using the sleeves that are matched to the different surgical drills, the implant hole is made and enlarged to size. The implant is then screwed in to place.
In this method we use, called “surgical guided implant placement”, there is no peeling away of the tissue in order to see the bone, (which is what is usually done), since we already know from our 3D scan where everything is. In this case, there is very little bleeding or pain. Most of our patients go right back to work that day, experiencing little or no post-operative discomfort.
Advantages of Dental Implants
Dental implants have many advantages over other tooth replacement options. The fact that they are permanently fixed in place means that:
- They do not move or slip when you chew or speak
- They are comfortable and do not cause pain
- Food cannot get underneath them
- You do not remove them for cleaning
- They can never get lost
- You will not need to be refitted and replace them over time like dentures and partials
Anchoring a partial to dental implants avoids relying on the surrounding teeth for support, so it does not create the risk of damaging your teeth. Since the implant replaces the tooth root, you do not experience the bone loss and shrinkage that causes facial collapse and premature aging.
Why Integrated Dental Aesthetics?
Dr. Jessica Logan has trained extensively with Dr. Carl Misch at the Misch International Implant Institute in Orlando, Florida, which is recognized as the premier implant training center in the country. She has also achieved fellowship status in the International Congress of Oral Implantologists (FICOI) and is a Misch Implant Fellow (FMIII).
To learn more about how dental implants can improve your quality of life and health, please contact Integrated Dental Aesthetics in the West Milford, New Jersey area, today. Scheduling your complimentary consultation with Dr. Jessica Logan is the first step to looking and feeling better.