Dental Implants in The Woodlands, TX
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Almost everyone has visited a dentist at some point in their lives, and while most people would prefer only to go for a routine cleaning every six months, it is not unusual for people to have other needs to need to be addressed by a dentist. One of the common issues regards a missing tooth. There are many reasons that someone could have a missing tooth. Some people are missing teeth from birth due to a congenital issue. Other people may have had a tooth knocked out due to a traumatic event. Some people have severe cavities or root disease that leads to a missing tooth. Whatever the reason, people need to know that there are options for replacing a missing tooth. Replacing a missing tooth can do wonders for self-esteem as people have the confidence in their smile restored.
We utilize The Engel Institute teaching course when applying implants. Watch the video below to see how it’s done!
Treatment Options for a Missing Tooth
People who are missing one or more teeth might be wondering what their options are. A few of the options are below:
Retainer: People can have special retainers made with a tooth on them. This can be a serious problem if the retainer gets lost because without the tooth to fill the space, the teeth could move and close the gap. This makes it hard to fill the gap with a tooth in the future.
Flipper: This is a classic treatment option where a cap is used to fill the space, and the cap is bonded to the two teeth next to it; however, this can damage the teeth surrounding the cap.
Carolina Bridge: This is a newer treatment option that leaves the two teeth around the gap intact. Unfortunately, the cap is bonded with cement on the back and is prone to falling out.
Dental Implant: This is the permanent treatment option for people missing a tooth. A dental implant is a strong, permanent solution for people who are looking for a way to fill the gap left by a missing tooth. Implants can be used to fill multiple gaps for people missing multiple teeth. This option will be fully explored below.
What is a Dental Implant?
At Laraway Family Dentistry, a practice in The Woodlands, provides a treatment called dental implants, which is a permanent replacement option for a missing tooth. The dental implant itself is a combination of a titanium screw and a porcelain cap. The porcelain cap is screwed on top of the titanium screw. The screw is placed in the jaw and the integrity of the jaw will help to keep the screw from falling out. People need to provide the same care to the dental implant that they would to any other tooth. Dental implants are viewed as a permanent solution. They should not require any further attention from an oral professional if cared for properly. People can eat whatever they would normally eat with a dental implant in place. Dental implants rarely fall out due to the strength of the screw and the strength of the jaw.
Placing the Dental Implant
Dental Implants is a procedure that varies based on the needs of the patient. The steps are summarized below.
Widening the Gap: The space between the teeth must be large enough to accommodate the placement of a dental implant. This is more important for children whose mouths are still growing. Braces will be used to widen the space between the teeth to make room for a tooth. When adults are missing a tooth, this is normally an acute event, and space should be wide enough due to the native tooth that was occupying the space recently. When children get their braces off, space will need to be maintained until their mouths are done growing. This is usually done with a retained attached to a tooth. An implant that is placed before the mouth has finished growing might be off in placement once the growing process has completed. Ensuring there is a spot for the implant is the first step.
Assessing the Jaw Integrity: A bigger problem for adults who have lost teeth due to disease, the jaw must be strong enough to hold a titanium screw in place. The gum tissue will be assessed by an oral health professional, and x-rays might be taken to ensure that the bone density of the jaw is strong enough to hold a dental implant in place.
Choosing the Cap: The porcelain cap will be chosen to match the shade of the native teeth. For aesthetic reasons, the cap shade should match the native teeth. The Woodlands Dental Implants will help provide bleach treatments for people who want to whiten their teeth before the porcelain cap is placed. It is important to remember that the cap will not stain with the native teeth.
Applying the Screw and Cap: On procedure day, The Woodlands Dental Implants will apply a local anesthetic to the site of the implant. Some people might prefer general anesthesia, and this is available. The jaw will be revealed by the oral surgeon, and the screw will be screwed into the jaw. Once the screw is in place, the porcelain cap will be screwed on top. Gum tissue will be taken from the roof of the mouth and sewn on top of the implant to promote the healing process.
Most patients don’t have any issues during the recovery process. Some mild bleeding and soreness are normal, and patients might require pain medication for a couple of days after the procedure. Patients should be able to eat a normal diet shortly after the procedure; however, follow-up in the immediate period after the operation is encouraged.