J. Tabacca D.D.S., M.Sc.
Our primary goal is to maintain the natural dentition. Unfortunately, due to injury and disease, it is often times necessary to replace missing teeth. Dental implants are one of many valuable tools to restore cosmetics and function by surgically implanting a specially designed tapered screw that is used to "anchor" replacement teeth. Certain anatomical criteria are necessary to determine the viability of implant placement. A simple clinical and radiographic analysis can be employed to determine if dental implants are for you.
Benefits of Implants vs. dental appliances:
Dental implants require the coordinated efforts of the implant surgeon, restorative dentist and dental lab.
Once the determination is made that the implant is a viable alternative, it is important to coordinate the surgical placement with the restorative follow-up.
Often times patients are referred for removal of a severely diseased or injured tooth for dental implant placement. In these cases, it is necessary to extract the offending tooth and place a bone graft to prepare the socket site for dental implant placement. This usually requires a three-month waiting period from the time of extraction with bone grafting, and the implant procedure. There are instances in which implants can be immediately placed following extraction; however, the success rate is diminished.
Although in some instances implants can be immediately loaded, typically a period of time (usually three months) is required before a crown can be built upon the implant. During this healing phase, the implant is integrated into the bone to secure it's stability. Following the healing phase, either the implant surgeon or restorative dentist will place an abutment on the implant. This will facilitate the fabrication of the final crown which is made by the dental laboratory at the direction of the restorative dentist.
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