Implant dentistry offers patients a way to replace missing teeth and to restore function to the mouth. For an informative article on what getting a dental implant involves, see this article on implants at Mouth Healthy, a website maintained by the American Dental Association (ADA).
Getting a Dental Implant
Dr. Albers specializes in the restorative phase of implant dentistry. He works with specialists such as oral surgeons and periodontists who actually perform the surgical procedure of placing a titanium post into a patient’s jaw. After healing, usually around 4 months, a patient comes to our office so that Dr. Albers can start the process of restoring the implant.
First, we take the custom abutment, made by a dental lab, and attach it to the implant fixture. Second, Dr. Albers designs a crown. Most often this is done in-office by Dr. Albers on his E4D same day crown system. At times, such as when a patient chooses a gold crown for restoration, it will be constructed by a dental lab. Finally, Dr. Albers cements the crown on the custom abutment.
Restorations Used With Dental Implants
Often times, patients need only one or two dental implants to restore their smile and the chewing function of their teeth. The restoration of these implants with either a metal or ceramic crown is straight forward. At other times, though, implants are part of a dental appliance. Several examples include:
- Implant Bridges – As we note at our page on dental bridges, you need to have good support structures on both sides of a bridge. If too many teeth are missing, an implant can create the strong support necessary for attaching a bridge.
- Implant Dentures – for information on dentures in general, see our page on dentures. Some people opt for implants to help hold dentures in more securely. Sometimes, our specialists place 2-4 implants in the jaw and dentures are made to fit onto these implants. These types of dentures are removable. The second form of implant dentures involves a minimum of four implants for each denture. These dentures are attached more permanently and can only be removed by a dentist. They require a yearly appointment to be removed and cleaned at our office.
The ADA lists dental implants as one of the most important developments in dentistry in the last 40 years. We have many patients who have chosen to receive dental implants to restore both looks and function to their mouth.