Dental implants are a popular and effective way to replace missing teeth. They are made of a small titanium screw that is inserted into the jawbone to act as a replacement for the missing tooth root. The implant is then topped with a dental crown, which looks and functions like a natural tooth.
The process of installing dental implants typically involves several steps and can take several months to complete. It typically starts with a consultation with a dentist or oral surgeon, who will examine the patient's mouth and take X-rays to determine if they are a good candidate for dental implants.
If the patient is a good candidate, the next step is to prepare the jawbone for the implant. This may involve a minor surgical procedure to remove any damaged or diseased bone, or to add bone graft material to the area to make it strong enough to support the implant.
Once the jawbone is ready, the dentist will make a small incision in the gum tissue and carefully insert the titanium implant into the jawbone. The implant is typically left to heal and integrate with the surrounding bone for several months. This process, known as osseointegration, helps to ensure that the implant is securely anchored in place and can support the dental crown.
After the implant has had time to heal and integrate with the bone, the dentist will attach a small metal post, called an abutment, to the top of the implant. This serves as the base for the dental crown, which will be custom-made to match the patient's natural teeth.
Finally, the dentist will attach the dental crown to the abutment and make any necessary adjustments to ensure that it fits properly and looks natural. The entire process typically takes several months, but the end result is a strong, stable replacement for the missing tooth that looks and functions like a natural tooth.
Overall, the process of installing dental implants is a safe and effective way to replace missing teeth. It is important to consult with a qualified dentist or oral surgeon to determine if dental implants are the right option for you.