When teeth are absent or of insufficient number or quality to support and retain a dental restoration or prosthesis, dental implants are used as substitutes
Normally, teeth or gum tissue support or retain fixed crowns and bridges and removable partial and complete dentures. After surgery, a dental implant can support and retain both fixed restorations (single crown, bridge, or full arch) and removable dentures (partial or complete).
Before the procedure
The most critical steps in restoring an implant are the modeling and planning steps that occur before the implant is placed to provide the underlying support to resist chewing forces. It is essential that the implants be placed accurately in the bone and that the space from the implant surface to the opposing dentition is sufficient to accommodate the type of restoration that is planned. Because of this, significantly more planning is required than for similar restorations for teeth. However, the actual restoration procedures for well-planned and well-placed implants is generally routine and is less of an inconvenience for the patient than similar restorations for teeth.
A 3-D radiograph (CBCT) is generally used to confirm not only the presence of adequate bone volume to house implants, but also to confirm that the available bone is located in the areas needed to support the planned and modeled restoration. The number and location of implants required is different from patient to patient depending on the restoration type and the anticipated biting forces.
After the procedure
It is important the dental implants be kept clean to avoid loss of bone from gum tissue disease that can ultimately lead to infections and loss of the implant.
Implant restorations are a highly effective alternative to conventional restorations. Restoration replacement and normal wear and tear will occur. The frequency of replacements are based on your biting force, lifestyle habits, nighttime or daytime bruxism, or trauma. Professional cleanings, dental visits and proper home care are very important in the success of this treatment.
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