Exploring the Design and Materials of Modern Dental Implants
Choosing to undergo a dental implant procedure is a big step, but one that can have a significant impact on the state of your health & quality of your life. This is why it’s so important that the procedure is performed with only the best tools, equipment, and materials.
Losing teeth can occur for a wide range of different reasons. Perhaps the tooth was knocked out by an accidental impact or became so severely damaged as to necessitate an extraction, or maybe extensive tooth decay and other types of dental problems have caused one or more teeth to become loose or even fall out. Regardless of the underlying cause, lost teeth can lead to further oral health problems if left untreated.
Fortunately, dental implants are a simple, effective, and permanent solution to the problem of lost and missing teeth. Dental implants are far superior to other options such as traditional dentures or bridges and are able to prevent many of the long-term dental problems that are known to develop as a result from the loss of teeth in the jaw, including gradual bone density loss, problems chewing or talking.
Naturally, when you undergo any type of restorative health care treatment you want to be confident that you’ll receive the absolute best care, both in terms of the skill and capability of the provider and in the quality and effectiveness of the materials used in the procedure. At Georgian Dental, we are committed to giving our patients the best possible result in everything we do, and that means using the finest dental implants available. This is why we choose to use Nobel Biocare implants in our clinics, as they feature the most effective designs and highest quality materials available today.
Before we get into the specifics of why materials and design are so important in dental implants, let’s quickly review how the tooth replacement process works, and the different types of implants that are available to suit different restorative needs.
What Is a Dental Implant, and How Do They Work?
As you know, teeth consist of a lot more than just the part that you see when you smile. There’s a long root on the tooth that extends deep into the jawbone to keep the tooth firmly in place and secure enough to endure a lifetime of chewing and biting. However, when a tooth becomes lost due to factors such as excessive decay, or is knocked out by an accidental impact, the root is no longer embedded in the jawbone and the absence of the tooth creates a gap between the other teeth in the mouth.
Solutions such as dental bridges are effective at replacing the upper, visible portion of the tooth and provide improvements to the appearance of your smile as well as to your ability to eat, drink, and talk. Similarly, traditional dentures are able to replace multiple teeth and provide the same benefits in terms of aesthetics and general mouth function. However, neither of these types of treatments deal with the underlying problem related to the loss of the root of the tooth from the jawbone.
Over time, the absence of the root of the tooth or teeth in the jaw leads to a decrease in bone density. As the bone loses density, it becomes weaker and more prone to other types of long-term health issues. In addition, the method used to attach a bridge to the teeth, or the adhesives used to keep dentures in place, are nowhere near as solid or secure as a natural root of a tooth. This can cause discomfort, and necessitates a great deal of caution when eating certain foods, as excessively hard or chewy foods can cause the bridge or denture to become loose or dislodged.
Dental implants do not have these same issues. Since the implant itself mimics the form and structure of a natural tooth, and is embedded directly into the jaw to take the place of the entire missing tooth and root, it prevents the loss of bone density. The base of the implant is known as the post. It bears some resemblance to a metal screw, and is made from a specialized material that firmly bonds with the organic bone in the jaw. The metal base of the implant is then capped with an artificial tooth that is customized to match the colour and shape of the patient’s natural teeth, resulting in a replacement tooth that is virtually indistinguishable from the other teeth in the mouth.
The solid connection between the implant and the jawbone also provides a complete restoration of full mouth function, with the patient being able to eat all their favourite foods with confidence. Dental implants offer the greatest comfort of all tooth replacement solutions, and avoids the long-term health effects that are associated with tooth loss and bone density reduction.
Exploring the Different Types of Dental Implant Treatments
Dental implant procedures are performed based on the individual needs of the patient, and are only used when it is absolutely necessary to replace an existing natural tooth. In cases where there is a single lost tooth, then only one implant would be needed to treat the problem. These procedures are common in the case of individual lost teeth, and can be performed quickly with very little recovery time needed.
For multiple lost teeth in a single area of the mouth, implant-supported bridges may be recommended as the optimum solution. These generally consist of two or more dental implants inserted into the jaw, and a bridge of artificial teeth mounted to them to fill in the gap of missing teeth in the jaw.
For patients in need of a full mouth restoration due to multiple lost teeth on the top and/or bottom jaw, a procedure known as ‘All-on-4’ can be used to regain complete function of the mouth and restore the smile of the patient in its entirety. Also known as full-bridge dental implants, the All-on-4 system is far superior to traditional dentures and has greatly enhanced the quality of life for countless patients.
In an All-on-4 procedure, 4 strategically-placed implants are embedded into the jaw to provide the base connection of the replacement teeth. Then, a full set of replacement teeth is attached to the implants using a secure connection system that allows the appliance to be attached and removed by the patient as needed to aid in cleaning and dental hygiene practices. To learn more about this innovative mouth restoration procedure, we suggest you visit our All-on-4 reference article.
Regardless of the type of implant procedure that a patient may need, the importance of material quality and implant design remain critical factors in the overall success and long-term benefits of the treatment.
The Importance of Dental Implant Materials & Design
In order for dental implants to provide the greatest combination of longevity, stability, durability, and appearance, they need to be manufactured with the highest quality materials available. Across virtually all measurements, titanium is considered to be the finest dental implant material due to its unique combination of strength, lightweight, and ability to strongly bond together with human bone. This last factor is extremely important, as not all metals are capable of this.
As an alternative, many implants are also offered in composite materials that use ceramics instead of metals. Although virtually identical in function and form to their metal counterparts, ceramic dental implants have some aesthetic differences that may be preferred in certain situations.
The shape and structure of the post of the implant also has a significant impact on the connection between the bone and the replacement tooth. Many types of implants have specialized ‘threads’ on the post that are designed to provide the maximum surface area for the bone to adhere to, increasing the strength of the connection and the permanence of the bond.
While there are many different manufacturers of dental implants, Georgian Dental relies on the quality and advanced technology of the dental implants offered by Nobel Biocare.
As the industry leader in dental implant innovation, both in design and in material development, Nobel Biocare has a proven track record that is renowned all over the world.
They offer a complete range of dental implant solutions, including advanced titanium dental implants as well as premium ceramic composite implants. For our patients, Georgian Dental feels there is no better choice of dental implants than Nobel Biocare.
Regain Full Mouth Function with Dental Implants by Georgian Dental & Nobel Biocare
Keeping your mouth strong and in optimum condition is an essential part of maintaining good overall health. In the event that you experience a lost tooth for any reason, it is critical that you have it taken care of as soon as possible. Our team of dental health professionals is ready to help you restore your smile and provide you with the best care and the best materials to achieve the most positive outcome. Contact our team today to learn more and arrange for your free, no-obligation dental implant consultation. We look forward to speaking with you!