Modern-day dental implants allow cosmetic dentists to replace single, multiple or an entire set of teeth in just one office visit, giving patients a new smile that is both functional and attractive. First introduced for those who couldn’t tolerate dentures after major tooth loss, dental implants have come a long way in the past 60 years.
The design and long-term success rate of dental implants changed dramatically in 1952 when a Swedish orthopedic surgeon discovered he could not easily remove titanium cylinders he had placed in the bones of animal test subjects. It was evident that the titanium had fused to the bone itself– a process called osseointegration. This breakthrough revelation formed the basis for the present-day dental implant, in which a titanium post is used to act like the root of a missing tooth. Titanium is not only incredibly strong, it is 100 percent biocompatible, meaning it won’t cause adverse reactions in surrounding tissue.
Over the last four decades, dental professionals have gleaned much new information about how the surface features of a titanium implant affects the speed at which it integrates or fuses into the jawbone tissue. For many years, dental implants had polished, smooth surfaces. Now we understand that bone bonds faster against rough surfaces. A roughened titanium post provides more surface area that touches surrounding bone tissue, leading to quicker healing times. In fact, the osseointegration process, which used to take up to six months with older, smooth implants is now about six weeks.
Moreover, modern dental implants are customized in size and width to each patient’s unique anatomy. The first wave of implants were more of a one-size-fits all approach, and were all manufactured in the same circumference.
In order for the final tooth restoration or crown to be applied over the implant, biological fusion must be completed, meaning patients would have to wait up to six weeks for their smile makeover. Not anymore, thanks to recent technology that enables tooth restorations to be fastened on the same day as the implant. In other words, no gaps in your smile and no need for temporary appliances.
Implants are now engineered with tiny screw-like threads, which along with careful site preparation methods, allow the implant to bond almost instantly. This is known as “immediate loading” and it’s particularly useful in patients who have one or more front teeth that need to be replaced.
Other innovations have given new hope to people who have lost or will lose all their teeth. Thanks to the revolutionary “All-on-4®” dental implant system, what once took many months to complete can now be done in one day. This advanced 3D imaging and computerized technique enables a new row of teeth to be attached to four dental implants. Lots of patients are good candidates for same day implants, even those who have lost jawbone mass.
Whether you’ve lost teeth due to gum disease, an accident or other reasons, today’s single tooth or multiple teeth dental implants are an excellent solution for both functional and aesthetic concerns. Here at Long Island Implant & Cosmetic Dentistry, we pride ourselves in offering the latest technology and services for patients needing replacement teeth in a day.
Call (631) 319-9509.to schedule an appointment for a consultation with Dr. Nick or Dr. Elliot to find out if you’re a good candidate for dental implants.
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