A natural tooth consists of a root and a crown. If you compare natural teeth to implant-supported replacement teeth, you’ll see they have the same basic parts. Both have a crown (the visible part used to chew food). Both have a root that holds the tooth securely under the gum and is anchored into the jaw. The difference is that the implant is made of titanium – the same time-tested material used by surgeons for artificial joints. When you lose a tooth, you lose both the root and the crown. To replace the tooth, the surgeon first replaces the root with a small dental implant.
Time is allowed for bone to heal and grow around the dental implant. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. A support post (abutment) is then placed on the implant and a new replacement tooth (crown) is placed on top of the abutment. In many cases a temporary replacement tooth can be attached to the implant immediately after it is placed. If all of your teeth are missing, a variety of treatment options are available to support the replacement teeth.
What are the Advantages of Dental Implants?
Tooth implants have several advantages compared to bridges or dentures. If you’re not sure which procedure is best for you, consider why so many people prefer implants: Dental implants last a lifetime A tooth implant is fused to the jawbone for stability You’ll have a natural-looking smile You don’t have to disturb surrounding teeth to replace an individual tooth Loose dentures and bridges aren’t an issue Caring for implants is no different than caring for natural teeth It’s easy to brush and floss dental implants and crown