Implant Dentistry: Single Tooth Implants
It is very important to replace missing teeth, because missing teeth leads to bone loss and the shifting of other teeth over time as they “cave in” to fill the space. This can lead to many problems, including, difficulty chewing, tooth decay and jaw pain.
The Initial ProcedureThe modern osseointegrated implant, a solution benefiting millions of patients since the early 1970s, is composed of two parts: the titanium base and a tooth-like porcelain crown. On the first day of treatment, a titanium base is screwed past the patient’s gums and deep into the jawbone. This is sometimes facilitated by the drilling of preliminary pilot holes. Titanium is considered a bioactive metal. This means that the implant will not be rejected by the body’s systems and, in fact, “fools” the surrounding bone tissue into accepting it as a natural tooth.
Sunnyvale dental implant dentist Dr. Gupta will then install a temporary healing cap which both protects the healing tissue and helps mold the gingiva (gum tissue) into a more natural shape. The patient is generally sedated with a local anesthesia for this first procedure, though sedation options will vary from patient to patient.
HealingThe patient should allow three to six months for the healing process to complete. During this period, osteoblasts (bone tissue cells) actually grow into and around the groves and rough edges of the titanium screw. This bonding of bone with metal provides the implants with an extremely robust structural foundation.
The temporary healing cap allows for safe and normal chewing activity during the healing process.