Dentures and bridges replace only the crown, the visible portion of your tooth above the gumline. These options must also fasten above the gum line, straining other teeth or leaving you with less-than-secure methods to hold artificial crowns in place.
Normally, your natural teeth stimulate bone tissue in your jaw while keeping your teeth securely in place. With dentures or bridges, you may lose bone mass in your jaw over time. Luckily dental implants replace both the root and crown of your tooth, making them the best option to restore the function of a natural tooth.
Dr. Joshua Whitford and the team at Silver Lake Dentistry in Raymore, Missouri offer dental implants to their patients who want to restore a long-lasting and natural-looking smile. As dental implant specialists, we’re ready to help you with this exciting permanent tooth replacement method.
How dental implants work
A dental implant is a multi-part system that creates a close resemblance to a natural tooth. The first part is the implant itself. Dr. Whitford screws a titanium post into the bone of your jaw, which fuses with natural bone tissue in a process called osseointegration. This can take some time in conventional implant systems.
The second part of your implant procedure is a transitional piece called an abutment. It acts as an interface between the implant post and the third part, the artificial crown, the only visible part of the implant.
Each implant is a custom experience made for your mouth. Implant systems are also quite flexible. You can use posts and abutments to support denture systems, and there’s not always a one-to-one ratio for implants to crowns. A single implant may support more than one crown.
The implant procedure
The implant procedure can sound intense because it requires cutting gum tissue and drilling into bone. In some cases, you may need bone grafts to bolster jawbone tissue.
However, these steps are painless because of contemporary dental anesthetics. Refined implant procedures also minimize the impact on your mouth, helping to reduce the pain factor. You may experience soreness after anesthetics wear off, but these are well-controlled by over-the-counter pain medications in most cases. Dr. Whitford can also provide prescription pain relief if necessary.
Despite the extent of work done during an implant procedure, it’s often possible to return to your normal day immediately after your appointment. Follow our post-procedure recommendations and you may be surprised at how little discomfort you feel.
Some implants, such as those requiring bone grafts, may require general anesthesia. The best way to learn more is through a consultation with the team at Silver Lake Dentistry. Call the appointment hotline at 816-368-5968 to schedule your visit. The time to upgrade your smile is now. Book your session today.