Natural-looking Enhancements for Your Smile
Replicating the natural function and appearance of lost teeth can be a difficult task. In the past, dentists gave dentures or bridges as their only option for restorations as replacements which resulted in limited success. However, restoring your smile permanently is no longer an unachievable goal with the emergence of dental implant dentistry.
Dental implants are natural-looking replacements for missing teeth. They are able to provide the same function as your natural tooth root. Dentists often use them in conjunction with dental crowns, dental bridges, or dentures to provide an aesthetic solution that also restores the function of your smile.
Candidates with healthy gums and adequate bone support may consider receiving dental implants. At the Williamsburg Center for Dental Health, we provide dental implants for one or many of the following reasons:
- Replace one or more teeth
- To provide support for a partial denture
- Enhance chewing comfort and confidence
- To improve the look of your smile
You may have thought that only an oral surgeon can do implants, however at our dental practice, we have done hundreds. We use safe CBCT imaging, modern tools, and software to identify any problems or challenges that need attention. For example, we can see precisely where to put the implant without issue.
Dental Implant Process
Dental implants in our Williamsburg, VA office restore missing teeth at the root. A screw comprised of titanium metal that is attached to the jawbone. Attaching the restoration at the jawbone reduces the risk of further bone loss and deterioration. After this procedure we let the area heal while the titanium post fuses to the jawbone, during a process called osseointegration. This takes about three to six months. While you are healing a temporary restoration may be placed.
Once the titanium post has healed and fused to the jawbone, you come back to our office for the second phase of treatment. During this phase we will attach an abatement to your jawbone. The abutment is what your permanent restoration will be attached to. During this appointment we will also take impressions, that will be sent to a dental lab to create your permanent restoration. This restoration may be dentures, a dental crown, or a bridge depending on patient needs.
We let your gums heal for about two weeks after the abutment is attached, after which you come back into our office to attach your restoration. At this point the process for dental implants is complete, and you will have a newly restored smile. After they receive their restoration many of our patients report that they experience an increase in self confidence, as they feel comfortable smiling, speaking, and chewing again.
Dental Implants FAQs
As your trusted dentist in Williamsburg, VA, Dr. Stacey Hall is here to help you choose the appropriate option for your restorative dentistry treatment. Our team is happy to speak with you regarding this option. Our dental implants offer several benefits to patients looking to replace one or more teeth. Continue reading to find answers to common questions regarding dental implants.
What is a dental implant?
A dental implant consists of three parts. The first part of your dental implant is a titanium post. Your dentist will surgically implant this metal post so it fuses together with your jawbone. This post will give your restoration the functionality of tooth roots.
After your mouth heals over the post, your dentist will add an abutment to it. The abutment will connect the post to your dental crown. Finally, our dentist will place a dental crown on top of the abutment. We will fully restore the look and functionality of your tooth.
What are some of the benefits of dental implants?
Dental implants are the premier method of tooth replacement. When you choose dental implants for your tooth restoration, you get to enjoy toothroot functionality. This means no dietary restrictions or extra steps in your oral hygiene routine. Your dental implant will look, feel, and function like your natural tooth without compromising your surrounding teeth as a dental bridge does.
Will my implant blend in with my smile?
Yes. One of the best aspects of dental implants is their ability to blend in seamlessly with the rest of your smile. You get to enjoy natural tooth aesthetics with dental implants. The dentist caps it off with a dental crown that is custom to your smile. The crown will match the rest of your teeth for a seamless look.
What is the difference between a dental bridge and a dental implant?
When considering a tooth restoration, dental bridges and dental implants are common suggestions. Dentists do not surgically implant dental bridges like they do with dental implants. This means that they require the support of your surrounding teeth to hold the prosthetic tooth in place.
Because dental bridges are external, you will need to add some steps to your daily oral hygiene routine. This will ensure that you are keeping the dental bridge clean. With dental implants, most of the restoration is underneath your soft tissues. Meaning that once you have a dental implant, you can care for it just like you would your real teeth.
How long does the healing process take for dental implants?
You should expect 3-6 months of healing before your dentist can attach the abutment and crown. This allows the titanium implant post to properly fuse together with your jawbone. While this may seem like a long wait time for a tooth restoration, it is well worth the wait. After your post successfully fuses together with your jawbone, you will have a fully functioning restored tooth.