It may come as a surprise to know that an estimated 100 million Americans have one or more teeth missing, mostly due to decay, faulty dental work and gum disease. Tooth loss can leave you feeling self-conscious, affecting your confidence and even your willingness to smile. Finding a Los Angeles implant dentist can put an end to this way of life once and for all. Dental implants in Los Angeles offer solutions for replacing a single tooth or several teeth depending on your situation.
The loss or damage to one or more permanent teeth can cause real problems down the road when left untreated. Dental implant surgery offers a healthy, long-term tooth replacement option that provides a range of benefits compared to other available replacement options.
How Do Dental Implants in Los Angeles Work?
A healthy tooth consists of a root portion that’s made of bone, among other structures and vessels. The visible part of a tooth grows out of the root system. Dental implants are designed to replace the tooth root, providing a solid foundation for replacement teeth.
A dental implant uses a titanium metal post that replaces the root. The replacement tooth is then mounted on top of an extension piece that’s attached to the metal post. In essence, the procedure places the implant inside your jawbone, which makes for a long-term solution for tooth replacement.
Dental Implants vs Dentures vs Bridges: What’s the Difference?
Dental implants, dentures and bridges offer three different ways to replace missing teeth. While all three options accomplish the same overall goal, each one has its own advantages and disadvantages.
Dental implants in Los Angeles are sturdy and can last for 10 years or longer. The main drawback is the length of time the entire procedure takes, which can run as long as nine months.
Dentures provide a removable option that replaces all of your teeth or areas of missing teeth. In many cases, the feel of dentures can take awhile to get used to when eating and talking.
Bridges attach to your existing teeth to “bridge” existing gaps. While effective, bridges can strain or disfigure the structure of nearby teeth.
What’s Involved With Dental Implant Surgery?
A Los Angeles implant dentist conducts a thorough evaluation to determine how best to proceed, basing the surgical process on the condition of your jawbone and the type of implant used. Typically, dental X-rays and a model or mold of your mouth and teeth will be taken.
Dental implant surgery involves a series of procedures and in some cases requires a team of dental specialists to attend to different areas that make up the mouth and teeth. For instance, oral and maxillofacial surgeons oversee matters regarding the jaw, mouth and face while anesthesiologists administer anesthesia during the procedure.
The procedure for dental implants in Los Angeles takes place in an outpatient setting and entails five stages:
- Removing the damaged tooth
- Preparing the jawbone for surgery
- Placing the implant post in your jawbone
- Placing the extension, also known as the abutment, on the implant post
- Placing the dental implant
The actual specifics of the procedure will vary depending on your overall oral health and the health of your jawbone. In cases where several teeth are missing on one side of the mouth, the different stages of the procedure will take longer due to the healing time required for each stage.
See also: What is abutment for dental implant?
Are There Different Types of Dental Implants?
Throughout the course of the procedure, your Los Angeles implant dentist will make impressions of your mouth to gauge how the process is affecting your jawbone structure. This helps ensure the dental implant will be correctly sized and fitted.
Once the extension or abutment has been placed and your gums have healed,