Your Guide to Dental Implants

Dental implants are medical devices surgically implanted into the jaw to replace missing or damaged teeth with artificial structures. These small titanium implants (posts) act as an artificial tooth root, helping to support dental prosthetics like crowns and bridges or to provide support for a removable denture to restore a person’s ability to chew, speak and enhance their physical appearance. 

They work especially well for patients who are missing one or more of their natural teeth. By providing a stable and sturdy foundation, dental implants can greatly improve the appearance and function of artificially restored teeth. In addition, dental implants can also help preserve the surrounding teeth health by preventing them from shifting out of place and maintaining bone support.

Advantages of Dental Implants

There are many advantages which is why they have become such a popular dental procedure.

  1. Look and feel just like natural teeth. This means you can enjoy all of your favorite foods without worrying about them damaging your dental prosthetics.
  2. Easy to care for. You can brush and floss them just like you would your regular teeth. Your dental hygienist can assist you with any special dental care or cleaning solutions.
  3. Potentially more durable than natural teeth.

Renewed confidence and smile.

Success Rate

Overall, dental implants have a high success rate. Approximately 95%-98% of dental implant patients experience successful results, and many implants can last for decades with proper care. It’s important to remember that long-term success depends on your oral health.

Can Anyone Get Dental Implants?

Most people who are healthy and have healthy jaw bone are suitable candidates for dental implants. The best way to find out if they are right for you is to talk to your oral surgeon, and they can assess your dental health and help you determine whether dental implants are a good option for you.

People who smoke heavily, suffer from chronic disorders like diabetes or heart disease, are immunocompromised or have had radiation therapy to the head/neck area should be examined and evaluated on an individual basis. Patients with dental problems like periodontal disease may need to undergo tooth extractions and bone grafting before getting dental implants. Additionally, those with a history of osteoporosis, severe bone loss, or other dental problems may not be a candidate.

Are They Expensive?

Dental implants may be more expensive than a bridge or denture initially, but they offer a long- term solution of satisfaction and smiles. An average bridge must be replaced every 5-7 years while a dental implant offers a long standing solution. At AZ Max we provide a detailed explanation of all fees before any procedures take place and we also provide information on various payment options.

Dental Implant Procedure

Endosteal implants are the most common type of dental implant. They are placed directly into the jawbone and act as artificial tooth roots. Once the endosteal implants have healed, small posts are attached to them, which will be used to support dental restorations like a dental crown or bridge.

The Procedure

  1. The procedure begins with a consultation with your oral surgeon. During this consultation, your surgeon will assess your dental health and determine whether dental implants are right for you. They will also develop a customized treatment plan based on your specific needs.
  2. If you decide to move forward with dental implants, the next step is to have the implant surgery. This surgery is usually performed under sedation. Your surgeon will assess your case and determine what method is best for you. 
  3. Small incisions are made in your gums, and then the implants are placed directly into your jawbone. Once they are in place, your surgeon will close the incisions with stitches. Some implants will have a healing abutment that will stick up through the gum to contour the gum for a crown to be placed later after the implant has integrated to the jawbone. 
  4. After the surgery, you will need to allow time for your jawbone to heal and for the implants to fuse with the bone. The healing phase, known as osseointegration, can take several months.
  5. Once your jawbone has healed, and the implants have fused with the bone, you will need to return to your oral surgeon to have the implants tested for stability. 
  6. After testing the implants and the implants are ready to be restored, your dentist will take impressions of your teeth to create dental crowns, bridges, or other dental restorations.
  7. Once the lab has processed the final abutment and crown, bridge or hybrid denture, you will need to return to the dentist for placement of the final crown restoration. 
  8. If a temporary crown is attached to your implant for aesthetics, do not chew, bite or touch it with your tongue. Do not brush temporary crown until after the stitches are removed.

Caring for Dental Implants

Dental implants are designed to potentially last a lifetime. With proper care, they can function and look just like natural teeth. It is important to brush and floss your dental implants just like you would natural teeth. You should also visit your dentist regularly for dental checkups and cleanings.

Risks

While dental implants are generally safe and effective, some risks are associated with the dental implant procedure. These include infection, dental implant failure (i.e. implants that do not fuse to the bone), gum recession, nerve damage, sinus complications, and dental implant rejection. Fortunately, these risks can be minimized by following your dentist’s aftercare instructions and attending all dental and surgical appointments.

FDA Approved and Biocompatibility

All dental implants must be FDA approved before being used in dental implant surgery. Additionally, all dental implant manufacturers must undergo biocompatibility testing to ensure that their implants are safe for use in humans. Dental implants are made from titanium, a biocompatible material well-tolerated by the human body. This means that they do not cause adverse reactions in patients and are able to integrate with bone tissue.

Restore Your Smile

Are you ready to reclaim your smile? We can help! Dental implants are a safe and effective way to restore dental function, improve your appearance, and boost your overall quality of life. With dental implants from AZ Max, you can enjoy all the benefits of having healthy, natural teeth, including improved dental health, better oral function, and enhanced self-confidence. 

Call us today at (480) 830-5866 to book a consultation with one of your skilled oral surgeons. We have 4 offices throughout the Phoenix East Valley and 1 in Show Low. We look forward to meeting you and helping you create your dream smile!