Many dental patients are concerned when they hear the words dental implants. These restorative devices should not be so intimidating. Prosthodontists use them to support dental health and preserve people's abilities to chew, talk and otherwise enjoy life.
What Are Dental Implants?
History tells us that people have been using dental implants for thousands of years. Ancient Egyptians and Mayans apparently used bone and wood to create false teeth. George Washington used wooden teeth.
Thankfully, science has advanced so that we do not have to depend on these materials any more. Dental implants are typically made from titanium today. They are surgically inserted in the jaw to take the place of teeth and their roots. Additionally, implants do much more than simply sit in place of dental structures. They support the surrounding teeth as well. Implanted into the jaw, they support various other dental prosthetic devices, such as crowns, bridges and dentures.
Dental Implant Procedure
Dental patients may notice that there is a lot of preparation before an implant procedure. The oral surgeon must identify the exact location, form and structure of the jaw and mouth. For example, depending on the future location of the implant, he may need to identify the abundance of the sinus cavity or the inferior alveolar nerve canal in the jaw. Aside from the usual dental X-rays, CT scans of the area may be required as well. It is important to know the exact shape of the jaw and amount of bone that can support the implants in order to avoid complications but also to prepare an implant that will fit exactly in place.
Once the planning has been finished, the oral surgeon can begin the actual procedure. It is necessary to make some sort of incision into the gums over the place where the implant will be inserted.
The implant is set in place without any other permanent adornment. It must be given time to let natural bone grow over it and set it in place firmly. Then, a prosthodontist can place crowns or other prostheses over the implant.
Recovery from Dental Implant
There is a great deal of debt over the proper amount of recovery time required to let the implant heal properly before placing a prosthesis on it. The general practice is to allow anywhere from two to four months for healing before adding the stress of a prosthesis, or four to six months if bone grafting is involved.
In very selected cases, a temporary prosthesis can be inserted on the same day of implant placement, possible if certain clinical criteria are meant.
Implants generally have a high success rate, although this is dependent on the type of procedure needed and the skill of the surgeon making the dental implant . So choosing the right dental surgeon to carry out the procedure is very important.
Dental care treatment has become an absolute necessity for millions of people worldwide; in spite of improvements and advancements in dental care and health, people are afflicted by gum disease and tooth decay. Till a few decades ago, bridges and fixing dentures were two main options for treating people with missing, broken or in situations where teeth have to be surgically removed.
Modern day dental care includes dental implants that are replacement teeth roots. An implant can support one or more artificial teeth; the implant is a screw made of titanium that is fixed into the jawbone in place of a tooth root when it fails. They provide a strong foundation or base on which removable or permanent teeth can be fixed to match existing natural teeth.
There are many advantages to dental implants, some of which are:
• Greater comfort – dental implants can help avoid discomfort of fixing and removing dentures.
• Ease of chewing and eating food – dentures do not always fit 100%; with use they become less fitting and chances of slipping out while chewing food are high. With dental implants, this problem is eliminated.
• Better oral health – dental implants do not require other teeth to be modified or adjusted thus ensuring that more natural teeth are left unharmed thereby improving dental health and hygiene in the long-term.
• Improvement in appearance – since dental implants are so designed that they fuse with the jawbone; they become permanent and feel like natural teeth.
• Speech improvement – unlike slurring or mumbling sometimes caused by dentures, implants do not slip ensuring better speech and communication.
• More confidence and self esteem – a good smile brings back confidence and a spring in the step.
• Convenience – dentures have to be removed and cleaned everyday; with dental implants this is not necessary at all.
• Durability – dental plates can last a lifetime with proper care and regular dental check-up.
Most dental implants can be safely done in the dentist’s office under local anesthesia. A slightly more complicated procedure may require hospitalization and intravenous sedation. Every dental implant procedure is different because it involves the patient’s preference, the experience of the dental surgeon and the overall need of the situation.
The procedure usually necessitates a three-step process because each stage requires time to heal.
This involves placing the dental plate flush into the gum, burying it like the root of a tooth would be. This is to give time for healing and to protect the implant from force. Once the healing period is over, the dental implant is exposed by surgically removing some of the gum covering it. This integration process is known as ‘osseointegrate’.
In this step, the dental surgeon examines the implant to see if it has integrated successfully into the gum and places a post or ‘abutment’ which is drilled through the gum. As the area around the gum heals it forms a collar which gives the dentist access to the implant while placing the artificial or prosthetic tooth.
In some cases, steps 1 and 2 are done together within small intervals. The advantage is that it eliminates extra surgical procedure; however this is a decision to be made by the dental surgeon taking into account the time needed for the implant to heal and integrate.
The time gap between steps 1 and 2 if done at different times can be from a few days up to a couple of weeks.
The final step is the fabrication and fixing of the prosthetic tooth or teeth to the integrated dental implants.
Medical or Dental Insurance
Dental plates by and large are not included in dental insurance. Here again, the factors leading to the implant are considered and in some cases, insurance coverage under existing medical plan may be considered by the insurance company. As dental implants are an expensive treatment, it is advisable to consult a good dental surgeon and finds the pros and cons before opting for it.[Top]
Porcelain veneers are a great way to cover chipped, cracked, discolored, slightly misaligned, or gapped teeth. The procedure is quite common and can be easily performed by most dentists in a matter of a couple visits. The veneers are made of a thin strip of porcelain, which is bonded directly to the front of the teeth in order to improve the shape and / or color of your smile.
First, consult your dentist and clearly express what it is that you would like to achieve. Obviously communicating your desires and expectations with your dentist will help ensure that you have successful results that you will be happy with. Your dentist can fully explain the procedure and answer any questions you may have.
After the initial consultation, your first visit will be to fit you for your new smile. It may be necessary for your dentist to strip away small amounts of the tooth to make room for the porcelain veneers. If this is necessary, a local anesthetic will be used to alleviate any discomfort. Impressions of your teeth will then be made and sent away to be crafted to fit your smile as closely as possible. If your teeth require any contouring, temporary veneers may be given to you to use until the permanent veneers can be finished.
When you return to the dentist for your second visit, your porcelain veneers will be test fitted to your teeth to ensure a comfortable and accurate fit. The dentist will then use a bonding agent to permanently secure the veneers to your teeth, creating a lasting seal. The tooth covering is then hardened, making your new smile durable and able to hold up to daily usage.
Your dentist will no doubt want to see you again for follow-up visits to ensure satisfactory results. Directly after the application of your porcelain veneers, your teeth may be a bit sensitive to temperature. Extremely hot or cold food and beverages should be avoided for the first two weeks if you experience any sensitivity.
As far as care goes, your porcelain tooth covering will be nearly just as durable as your teeth, and will only require the same care your teeth needed before the procedure. Flossing and brushing regularly will ensure that your veneers will last. A professional check-up and cleaning is recommended every 6 months, just as normal. With proper care, your new smile will typically last in upwards of 15 years.
Every dental institution's porcelain tooth coverings may differ slightly from this, but, in general, this is what you can expect when having porcelain dental veneers applied to your teeth. Be sure to consult your dentist to see if porcelain veneers will be helpful to you.[Top]
A dentist recommends crowns for those who have teeth that are broken or damaged due to deceay or effects of previous treatments like fillings. A crown can be made of ceramic, gold, porcelain, or porcelain that's bonded on gold. It's shaped like your natural tooth and usually appears gold or silver.
While it is already a common treatment, it poses some risks to its wearer. But usually, these problems only happen when not properly administrated by the dentist or when proper maintenance is neglected by the wearer.
Expect some discomfort or sensitivity once the anesthesia wears off after your tooth is crowned. You'll probably experience sensitivity to hot and cold food and beverages. You'll be advised by your dentist to use toothpaste that's made for sensitive teeth and gums to help you get through this problem. However, if you're feeling any pain or discomfort when you chew or bite, it may be because the crown is placed too high on your tooth. Contact your dentist as soon as possible.
It is often recommended that you have porcelain crowns on teeth that are easily visible. However, porcelain can chip easily. You need to follow your dentist's advice on how to properly care for it once it is set on your tooth. If the porcelain has a small chip, the dental clinic can still repair with the use of a composite resin material. But if the damage is quite substantial, the whole crown might have to be replaced.
After your tooth is crowned, try to check if the material is an exact fit. Tell the dentist right away if it feels loose or uncomfortable. A loose crown can bring more serious problems like tooth decay, since bacteria can easily creep in your teeth. It's also possible that the crown will just fall off if it's not set perfectly right from the start. But it's also possible that the cement used in your dental crown procedure will be washed out after some time. So always check your treated tooth every now and then. Get in touch with your dentist once you notice this problem. It may just need a reapplication of the cement. In extreme cases, the crown might have to be replaced.
There are rare situations where the patient develops allergies after a crown is set on his or her tooth. This is due to the mixture of metals used in the procedure. Let your dentist know any significant medical history about allergies and other conditions you may have before the treatment to help you avoid this situation.
These risks can continue into serious conditions. It is important that you go to a reputable dental expert for a treatment like this. Be sure also to follow proper oral hygiene and maintenance and any other special instructions the dentist gives you in relation to this procedure.[Top]
Veneers are one of the best advances in cosmetic dentistry. They are made at the lab from a thin layer of porcelain. They are then cemented directly over a slightly prepped tooth. They are best performed over a healthy, non-chewing surface or front tooth. They can cover stains, close spaces, cover chipped teeth and change the color of the teeth. They are very natural looking and resilient to wear. They will not discolor. If you are looking for very white teeth, porcelain veneers are the ultimate. The dental veneers procedure usually take 2 office visits.
On the 1st visit, a small amount of tooth is reduced from the front (facial) to compensate for the thickness of the veneer. An impression is then taken of the patients prepped teeth and sent to the dental lab for custom fabrication. You are then fitted with a temporary facing for approximately 2 weeks.
To cement the completed veneer, the dentist carefully prepares the tooth with acid gel, which creates small pores on the surface of the tooth. When the new veneer is pressed against the prepared tooth, the pores interlock and create a very strong bond. Because they are porcelain, the possibility of fractures are present, but rare. The veneers should last a lifetime with proper care. Ask if there is any guarantees against fracturing.
Below outlined is the detailed and step by step dental veneers procedure aesthetic try-in.
With a veneer set-up an aesthetic try-in needs to be performed on the patient. The objective is the verification of:
Shape, color and position
Occusal plane, provided that posterior teeth are involved
Movement function (dynamics)
Centric bite and
A silicone precast is created from the set-up and a proper abutment is chosen. On top of the abutments primary telescope crowns and galvanically produced secondary parts are constructed along with a gingival mask for the verification of the gingival margin
2. Tertiary framework
The tertiary framework was produced with the model casting method. With the casted and finished tertiary structure, the optical verification with the veneers in the precast takes place. A transfer key for the abutments is mandatory as the absence of the rotation lock requires it in the dental veneers procedure.
3. Try-in and travel prosthesis
In the next step of the dental veneers procedure the abutments are placed and definitively screwed in with the transfer key. Non-rotation locked abutments can only be placed once and have to fit perfectly in the secondary construction in the mouth in other words: on the first try. The primary crowns are bonded to the abutments and the secondary crowns are placed on top followed by a try-in of the tertiary structure and tension-free cementing. Another impression over the tertiary structure is necessary because we have to produce a new model to finalize the work. The travel prosthesis is integrated and lined with a non-hardening material.
After the model is produced the same tooth shape of the veneers is placed on the tertiary structure without the patient requests changes. These are the advantages of travel prosthesis: the abutments and primary crowns are placed in the mouth quickly; the patient can leave with her first prosthesis. The patient is able to test the prosthesis in her daily life: is the speech as it was during the try-in? Is the aesthetic effect to her liking, how is the reaction of her social environment … all that without pressure and stress.
The veneers are set-up in front of the tertiary framework and are ready to be cemented. The tertiary framework is blasted with AL2O3 110 μm and conditioned with metal primer, followed by the application and curing of the light cured opaquer. The with AL2O3 110 μm blasted veneers are conditioned with the primer viso.link and light cured.
The cementing of the veneers is done with combo.lign, the dual-hardening adhesive composite, which matches any selected dentine color.
The finishing of the veneering from the palatal region and the designing of the inter-dental areas is carried out with crea.lign. These composites can be used for the characterization of the veneer in the selected dentine and incisal shades.[Top]