Thursday, September 14, 2017

Dental implants

We still use many kinds of restorations at Town Center Family Dentistry, but it’s undeniable that the ability to replace individual teeth with implants has revolutionized the dental field. There was a time when older patients were commonly fitted with conventional dentures if they experienced advanced periodontal disease or tooth decay and were treated for most of their lives as if their teeth would inevitably be extracted. But that’s no longer the case. While dentures may be the best solution for some patients, the advancement of dental implants means that dentists can now offer their patients fixed teeth replacements. Patients’ options are no longer limited to a removable denture. Moreover, implants can help in sparing the patient’s jawbone.

There’s much more to teeth than the crown, which is the part you see above the gum line. The root of the tooth is anchored in the jawbone, but it also provides the jawbone with stability. Think of how trees hold soil in place, and you’ll have an idea of what teeth do for the skull. When a tooth is lost, the jawbone dissolves, and for a tooth to be replaced there must be enough bone for the root to fuse to. Sometimes, when there isn’t enough bone structure left for an implant, your dentist at Town Center Family Dentistry in Towson, MD can graft new bone material onto the jawbone. This procedure can take place either at the same time the implant is inserted or several months before, depending on the condition of the extraction socket and bone quality at the site of the implant.

The actual implant is a titanium screw or post, which your dentist at Town Center Family dentistry makes an incision into the gum to place. It will take several months for the implant to fuse with the jawbone. During this time, the patient will wear a temporary fixed crown or a removable appliance to fill the gap between the teeth and protect the surgical site. This will also prevent shifting of adjacent teeth. At the return visit, we will screw an abutment to the implant, and make a mold of the patient’s mouth which will be used to manufacture an artificial crown. The porcelain fused to high noble metal or ceramic construction material complements the titanium base to make a very strong and aesthetically pleasing restoration.

Placing the crown is the probably the easiest part of the restoration for the patient. Usually, no local numbing is required. Implants have a very high success rate and can last for more than ten years with the same care used for natural teeth. Patients are able to regain the full use of their mouths, and best of all, the implants can help restore the bone structure around the mouth, as well. For more information please visit us at or call us at 410-828-8000.