Posts for tag: dental implants
Tooth loss can lead to the deterioration of your bones without the support it needs. Dental implants are the most ideal replacement for teeth as they provide your jawbone with this necessary strength. If you decide to get a dental implant, here's what you need to know about the process, and of course, your dentist in Fort Worth, TX, Dr. Brad McConnell, is available to help and advise you!
The Dental Implant Procedure
The procedure is long, yet simple, and begins when a local anesthetic is applied to the area that will undergo treatment. Your Fort Worth dentist will then remove any decayed tooth left and insert a titanium post into the jawbone. This titanium post acts as the new tooth root and is biocompatible, so there is no worry of tissue rejection.
The doctor will then surgically close the area and allow it to heal for a period of 3 to 6 months so that osseointegration can take its full course (this is the process by which titanium fuses to the jawbone to provide reinforcement). When you return, your dentist will re-open the area, insert an abutment, and place a crown that matches the rest of your teeth over it.
Dental implants do the following:
- Anchor dentures
- Fill a single gap or multiple gaps in your teeth
- Have a high success rate, reaching 95 percent
- Allow you to bite into and chew your favorite foods
- Not slip out of place like dentures, making them comfortable and practical
- Look natural and give you a beautiful smile
- Provide your jawbone with the support it needs so that it doesn't shrink
You should practice healthy dental regimens to protect your teeth and ensure that dental implants last longer. Getting professional dental cleanings and checkups every six months to remove hardened plaque that's accumulated on teeth and around gums is important in maintaining healthy teeth. You should also receive fluoride treatments and use fluoride-containing products like toothpaste and mouthwash to prevent gum disease and tooth decay.
Also, brushing your teeth for at least two minutes twice a day and flossing at least once before bed will remove food debris.
If you have questions or concerns, Dr. Brad McConnell can help you. Call (817) 423-2223 in Fort Worth, TX, to make an appoint today!
If you're missing teeth due to decay, trauma or gum disease, all is not lost. Modern dental science offers a tooth replacement so lifelike, patients cannot distinguish between their real teeth and their artificial ones. What are these miracles of oral health? They're dental implants, and your Fort Worth dentist, Dr. Brad McConnell, uses them to complete smiles beautifully.
How implants work
In his Fort Worth office, Dr. McConnell places dental implants directly into the jawbone of patients who are missing teeth but overall, are healthy. He evaluates the surrounding teeth, gums and supporting bone to ensure the implant screw will have a strong foundation.
After a careful examination, and digital X-rays, your dentist can proceed with the treatment, numbing the area first to ensure your complete comfort. After that, he opens the gums and drills a small access hole into the jaw. Then, he inserts the titanium implant and closes with sutures.
For several weeks, you'll wait for the site to heal, or osseointegrate. Osseointegration bonds the jaw bone to the titanium implant with exceptional security. However, you can not chew on your implant until this process is complete.
While it takes a few months, the wait is worthwhile, practically guaranteeing that implant will not be disrupted in any way for years to come. In fact, the Institute for Dental Implant Awareness says that implants last 40 to 50 years or even more--in other words, a lifetime.
The unexpected benefits
Due to osseointegration, jaw bone density improves as you use your new tooth. The forces exerted on your implant transfer to the bone, exercising and strengthening it
You'll avoid the embarrassment of smile gaps and the gum and bone degradation which results when a tooth is extracted and either not replaced or replaced with traditional bridgework or dentures. These conventional tooth replacements just rest on top of the gums and cannot preserve the jaw bone.
Bridgework, partial dentures and full dentures which are either fixed or removable also may be anchored with dental implants. The foundation is so secure that patients can eat the very same foods they enjoyed with their natural teeth--corn on the cob, ribs, apples and other items which test the security of dental prosthetics.
Finally, dental implants are easy to maintain. Your hygienist will show you the proper way to brush and floss around your implants, and you might consider wearing a bite guard if you habitually clench your teeth. This appliance reduces the forces exerted by bruxism.
A word about tobacco--please consider quitting your smoking or chewing habit. Tobacco contains toxins which harm gum tissue and bone around natural teeth and dental implants, too. So, give your oral and systemic health a break, and see your doctor about a smoking cessation program.
Book a consultation
Dr. McConnell and his team welcome the opportunity to evaluate people for innovative dental implants. Why not work toward completing your smile by arranging an in-office consultation? Call Harris Parkway Dental Care today: (817) 423-2223.
You’ve invested quite a bit in your new dental implants. And it truly is an investment: because of implants’ potential longevity, their long-term costs could actually be lower than other restorations whose upfront costs might be less.
But to better ensure their longevity, you’ll need to keep your implants and the natural tissues supporting them clean of bacterial plaque, a sticky biofilm that can cause periodontal (gum) disease. Although the implant itself is unaffected by disease, the natural tissues around it can be. An infection could ultimately weaken the bone supporting the implant and lead to its failure.
Such an infection involving implants could advance rapidly because they don’t have the natural defenses of the original teeth. Our natural teeth are connected to the jaw through the periodontal ligament, a collagen network that attaches to both the teeth and the bone through tiny tissue fibers. This connection also provides access to antibodies produced by the body to fight infection.
By contrast, we place implants directly into the jawbone. While this creates a very secure attachment, the implant won’t have the same connection as teeth with the body’s immune system. That means any infection that develops in surrounding tissues can spread much more rapidly—and so must be dealt with promptly.
Treating this particular form of gum disease (known as peri-implantitis) is similar to infections with natural teeth and gums, with one important difference involving the tools we use to remove plaque from them. While natural teeth can handle metal scalers and curettes, these can create microscopic scratches in the porcelain and metal surfaces of an implant and create havens for further bacterial growth. Instead, we use instruments made of plastic or resin that won’t scratch, as well as ultrasonic equipment to vibrate plaque loose.
To avoid an infection, it’s important that you brush your implants and surrounding tissues just like you would your natural teeth (be sure you use a soft-bristled brush). And keep up regular dental visits for thorough cleanings and checkups to stay ahead of any developing gum infection. Maintaining your dentures will help ensure they continue to brighten your smile for a long time.
If you would like more information on dental implants, 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 “Dental Implant Maintenance: Implant Teeth Must be Cleaned Differently.”
If you're considering dental implants to replace one or more missing teeth, you'll need to undergo a minor to moderate surgical procedure (depending on the number of implants) to install them. Depending on your current health status and medical history, you may need antibiotics before or after the procedure to help ensure a successful outcome.
Although implants have a high success rate (over 95%), they can still fail — and bacterial infection is a major culprit. Installing implants requires surgically accessing the bone through the gum tissues; you may also need other invasive procedures like tooth extraction or bone or gum tissue grafting. These disruptions to the soft tissues can introduce bacteria into the bloodstream.
In certain individuals, this can increase infection risk not only around the implant but also in other parts of the body. You may be at higher risk, for example, if you have serious health problems like cardiovascular disease or diabetes, a weakened immune system, you use tobacco or you're over or under normal weight. The American Dental and American Heart Associations both recommend antibiotics before dental implant surgery as a preventive measure against infection if you have a prosthetic heart valve, a history of infective endocarditis, a heart transplant or some congenital heart conditions.
For other patients with low to moderate risk for infection, there's vigorous debate on administering antibiotics before implant surgery. There are some side effects to antibiotic use, ranging from diarrhea to allergic reactions, and an increased concern in general to the developing resistance of many infectious agents due to the prevalent use of antibiotics. Many dentists and physicians are becoming more discriminate in the patients for which they prescribe antibiotics before surgical procedures.
It really comes down, then, to your particular case: not only the specific procedures you need but also your general health. After weighing these factors against the possible benefits for protecting your health and improving your odds of a successful outcome, we'll recommend whether antibiotic treatment for implants is right for you.
For whatever reason, you’ve put off replacing a missing tooth for awhile. Now you want to fill that empty gap in your smile with a dental implant restoration.
But if your tooth’s been missing for a long time, there could be a problem with space. This is because the teeth on either side of the space may have gradually drifted into it, leaving no room for the implant. You could need orthodontic work first to return these teeth to their proper position.
We could use braces, metal orthodontic devices with wires threaded through brackets bonded to the teeth that are then anchored, usually to back teeth. The orthodontist uses elastics or springs as well as possibly incrementally tightening of the wire against the anchors. These techniques create pressure or tension on the teeth for the desired direction of movement. The teeth’s natural mechanism for movement does the rest.
But while effective, braces can be quite noticeable, an embarrassing thought for many adults having to wear them over several months of treatment. But there may be an alternative: clear aligners, a succession of slightly different plastic trays usually worn in two-week intervals. Sequentially wearing each tray gradually moves the teeth to their desired positions.
Though not appropriate for all bite situations, clear aligners have a number of benefits when they can be used. They’re nearly invisible to others and can be removed for hygiene tasks or rare special occasions. What’s more, the orthodontist may attach a temporary prosthetic (false) tooth to the trays to camouflage the missing space during treatment.
There’s one other issue you may have to deal with: if your tooth loss was related to periodontal (gum) disease, the gums and underlying bone may be in poor condition. In fact, substantial bone loss could rule out an implant altogether. But we may be able to remedy both gum and bone deficiencies through grafting or plastic surgery. It may be possible to regenerate enough bone to support the implant; and surgically repairing your gums will help ensure the implant appears natural.
If you have problems like these, don’t give up on your restoration goal just yet. With some orthodontic and dental work ahead of time, we may still be able to make implants a reality for you.