Dental implants are one of the most popular restorative dentistry solutions available with Dr. Lance Porter at Porter Dental Health Clinic — and for good reason. The replacement teeth are incredibly versatile, as they can replace a single tooth, multiple teeth or all of the teeth in the upper or lower arch, but they can also stabilize a denture appliance to make it more secure and more comfortable.
Not every dentist understands the complexities of dental implants like Dr. Porter. He has invested a lot of time in dental implant education and training in order to offer patients this option. He has witnessed all of the ways a person’s life can change with dental implants; his patients are able to speak, smile and socialize with confidence, knowing they have a complete, attractive set of teeth.
What Are the Benefits of Dental Implants?
As mentioned, dental implants are extremely versatile and can be used in a number of ways to recreate a complete smile. They support normal chewing and biting function, improved speech and improved appearance. Closing the gap left by a missing tooth with a dental implant prevents the surrounding or opposing teeth from shifting around in the mouth and throwing off the bite.
By design, dental implants also promote oral health in a way that other tooth replacements don’t. Implants are composed of an artificial tooth and a titanium post (either a rod or screw) that is surgically implanted in the jawbone beneath the gap left by a missing tooth. This post becomes part of the bone’s anatomy to provide a secure, stable base for the artificial tooth. Chewing on the post also helps keep the jawbone strong and healthy; otherwise, the lack of chewing forces would lead to the decline of the jawbone and related consequences. A healthy jawbone is essential for supporting any remaining teeth and helping maintain natural-looking facial contours.
Another crucial benefit of dental implants is their longevity. With the proper care and maintenance, dental implants can last a lifetime.
The Process of Getting a Dental Implant
Getting a dental implant usually requires multiple office visits and at least several months.
The first step of the process is an oral surgery procedure to place the implant post into the jawbone. An opening is created in the jawbone beneath the gap left by the missing tooth, and the post is installed.
How the Implant Heals (Osseointegration)
Next, the post is left to heal and integrate with the bone during a process called osseointegration. Normally this part of the process takes several months.
Once the post has become part of the bone’s anatomy, the top is uncovered and an artificial tooth is affixed to the top of the post with an attachment piece called an abutment. The crown is matched to the surrounding teeth so it should look the same in terms of shape, size and color.
How to Learn More About Dental Implants
To learn more about dental implants or how they are placed, please feel free to reach out to Dr. Porter and the team at Porter Dental Health Clinic. We are happy to help you determine whether implants are the best solution for your dental needs.