A sports accident, decay, periodontitis or a secondary condition of a disease. There are many reasons for tooth loss. What is evident is that tooth loss is always painful.
The good news, however, is that there are various implant options and otherwise readily available here in Atlanta to close gaps in the teeth with functional and aesthetic efficiency.
Primarily, teeth are responsible for grinding down food and help us articulate. They also have a wide range of other functions and are crucial to the preservation of the jawbone.
We should also remember that our teeth play a key part in achieving a harmonious facial expression and contribute to a well-groomed appearance. Beautiful and healthy teeth mean quality of life. Unfortunately, we often do not know what we have until it is gone. We take the functions and aesthetic value of our teeth too much for granted.
Taking into account your wishes and your individual situation, our goal at DrG Dental Studio is to show you the available treatment options in a non-binding consultation and provide you all the details you need. Every situation has a range of solutions – and there is bound to be one that suits you.
What are dental implants?
A dental implant is an artificial tooth root that grows into the surrounding bone, anchoring firmly in place. After the time required for healing, the implant is provided with an abutment, on which the actual crown or bridge is placed. In fully edentulous situations where a patient has lost all their teeth, implants form a stable anchor for the removable dentures. This then restores the aesthetics and functions of your teeth.
For you, the patient, this means chewing without being cautious and smiling unselfconsciously.
Modern implants made of ceramic such as the Zeramex implant system grow into the bone in the same way as titanium to firmly anchor the restoration and to counteract bone loss.
Ceramic implants have some additional advantages over titanium implants. One is striking: the white color creates the best conditions for aesthetic results. There is no risk of the grey metal edges becoming visible, or of the dark core of the implant shimmering through the gums around the edge of the crown as you may have observed with titanium implants.
Suitable for single-tooth restoration
If only one tooth is missing, the dental implant is fitted with a crown. This single-tooth restoration blends seamlessly and invisibly into the natural dental arch. Your own teeth do not have to be ground down as is the case with conventional bridges, and your natural tooth substance is retained.
- The gap is clearly visible, the bones and gums are healthy.
- The artificial tooth root (implant) is inserted into the jawbone.
- The abutment is securely connected to the implant, and the crown is secured on top.
- The gap is closed, and function is restored.
The ceramic crown and metal-free tooth root replacement deliver an aesthetically pleasing result.
Fits into gaps in the teeth
If several teeth are missing and the gap is larger, this can be “bridged” in the true sense of the word. At least two dental implants ensure that the bridge is firmly secured. The number required to ensure that there are no gaps in the teeth can vary depending on the clinical situation.
- Missing teeth must be replaced and to do so, the bone and gums must be healthy and there must be sufficient bone available.
- The artificial tooth roots (implants) are inserted into the jawbone.
- The abutments are securely connected to the implants, and the bridges are secured on top.
- The gap is closed, and function is restored.
The aesthetics of bridges and metal-free root replacements perfectly match your dental arch. The neighboring teeth are not ground.
Stable foundation for restorations with removable dentures
Even if all teeth are lost, dental implants offer a reliable and attractive solution. Firmly seated within the bone, they offer a secure base for your removable dentures. Depending on your wishes and the clinical conditions, several treatment options are available. Dental implants are specifically designed to be more comfortable to wear, so that you can take a big bite and talk and laugh without worrying.
- Missing teeth must be replaced, provided there is sufficient bone available in which to securely anchor the implants.
- The artificial tooth roots (implants) are inserted into the jawbone. Depending on the concept, 2, 4 or more implants are planned.
- The abutments are securely connected to the implants. These special abutments support the restoration, which you can simply insert and remove yourself. Your dental arch is complete, and function is restored.
Implant treatment, step by step
Dental implants are individual solutions for dental restorations. Before any treatment, we will carefully check which treatment options are available in your specific case. Our recommendations are based on a comprehensive dental history, x-rays (if the bone situation is unclear, CT or DVT images may be taken) and take into account your own wishes and requirements. Usually, models are produced for precise analysis or function tests are carried out. As your dentist, we will discuss with you which solution is best for you and will carefully weigh up the options. Ask about the advantages, disadvantages and potential risks. There are a small number of pre-existing conditions that in rare cases can mean that implant treatment is not a suitable option. We will then advise you about possible alternatives.
Generally, pre-treatments are required for an implant restoration. These ensure that the treatment is successful and improve your oral health in the long term. These may be, for instance, professional teeth cleaning, removing decay or gingival pockets, and sometimes also orthodontic treatment or bone grafts.
A strong foundation is essential for the stable anchoring of the implant, i.e. the available jawbone must be sufficiently wide and high. This is not always the case, as a gap that has existed for a long time often means that the bone breaks down in this area. If there is not a sufficient amount of bone available, the jawbone is first restored. The choice of a suitable procedure depends very much on the nature and the extent of the bone loss.
You, as a patient, can also play an active part during the pre-treatment phase to ensure that the subsequent implant therapy is successful.
3. The implant
The Zeramex dental implant system consists of several components: the part that is not seen, i.e. the artificial tooth root (Zeramex implant) and the part that is seen, what is called the prosthetic restoration (crown/bridge/prosthesis) which is later individually manufactured, usually in the dental laboratory. Both parts are connected using the abutment. The abutment also serves as a holder, so that the prosthetic restoration is firmly secured.
Although most dentists consider implantation to be a routine procedure these days, it is always a surgical procedure and is performed as gently as possible with the latest anesthetic and implantation methods. Initially, in most cases, a local anesthetic provides sufficient anesthesia to prepare a suitable implant bed in the jawbone. The artificial tooth root is then introduced into the bed. During the weeks following the implantation, the body works at integrating the implant into the surrounding bone. Osteoblasts, the cells that form new bone, start to build upon the implant so that it is gradually enveloped in young bone. This process is called osseointegration.
In order for the implant to become securely embedded in the jawbone, it is covered and stays under the gum until the subsequent restoration. The healing phase (which generally takes 3 to 6 months) can vary. In isolated cases, the inserted implant can also be treated with a provisional restoration immediately. In other words, a provisional treatment made of plastic is used as a temporary solution so that you can dazzle people with your smile directly after the implantation.
Once the time for healing is over, we will first place the abutment on the implant, which is followed by the permanent restoration (e.g. the crown). To produce the restoration tailored for you, an impression is taken of your upper and lower jaw and sent to the laboratory. This impression provides us with all the information we need to tailor a restoration (crown, bridge or prosthesis) specifically for you. To achieve the best possible result, it may be necessary to do this in several steps such as trying on the restoration before it is completed.
For a full restoration in an edentulous situation, holders are inserted to which the removable dentures are then anchored. These make it easy to remove the dentures, for example for cleaning, and also ensure that the prosthesis is secured firmly in place.
7. Care and monitoring
Dentures also require routine care and should be regularly checked. Alongside normal daily dental care with a toothbrush and other products to clean between the teeth, regular professional teeth cleaning in your dental practice is an important investment in the life of your implants. After the implantation, we will offer you tips and useful products for daily cleaning. Good cleaning and regular checks ensure the long-term success of your implant treatment. This also applies to natural teeth and the periodontium. Avoid the risk of gum disease or gingival pockets and help to preserve your oral health far into the future.