Dental implants are a permanent and appealing solution to replace missing or extracted teeth. They are better than other alternatives like bridges because no additional teeth need to be altered to place the new tooth.
The entire implant process is performed over the course of a single visit up to several months depending on your condition. The first part of the process is to install the implant itself. It is anchored securely in the jaw. Multiple implants can be placed at once if necessary.
In some cases the implant may be used immediately. In other cases the implant must be allowed about 3-6 months to fuse or integrate. This is where the jaw bone will form around the implant in a process called osseointegration. During this fusion time you may have transitional replacement teeth installed so that you can eat and speak and maintain a presentable aesthetic appearance for socializing.
After the implant has integrated it is time to place an abutment on the implant. The abutment serves as the base for your new tooth. At this time either an immediate crown is placed using CEREC technology or an impression of the abutment is taken and is used to create your permanent restoration at a laboratory. Once the restoration is completed you can return to the office to attach the restoration permanently. Your smile will look & feel just like one of your own teeth.
Of course implants may be used for stabilizing removable restorations like SnapTite Dentures & partials or bridgework.