If you have missing or severely damaged teeth, it can be difficult to chew, speak, or smile with comfort and confidence.
Dr. Sean Healy in Santa Fe, NM, uses world-renowned Nobel Biocare® dental implants to replace a single tooth or multiple missing teeth.
So why should you choose dental implants to replace missing teeth?
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Dental Implants Basics
When a tooth is lost or removed, both the root and the visible part of the tooth (crown) are gone. A dental implant is a tiny titanium tooth root replacement which is inserted into the jawbone where teeth are missing. Over time, the bone grows around the titanium and forms a strong and secure foundation for the new titanium root. On top of the post, your oral surgeon can place a new crown, custom-matched to your own teeth. The crown is either cemented onto the post or held in place with a connecting screw referred to as an abutment.
A number of different types of implants are available. If you are replacing multiple neighboring teeth, your dentist may recommend an implant-secured bridge or denture. Unlike traditional bridges, an implant does not require cutting nearby teeth and thus better preserves a patient’s remaining teeth. Implant-retained dentures are considerably more stable than traditional options as well, and can both improve the quality of chewing and eliminate slipping.
Benefits of Dental Implants
The benefits of implants are enormous. If your ability to chew is hindered due to the tender area of the missing tooth, your speech is affected by missing teeth, or if you are reluctant to smile because of gaps in your smile, these problems can be solved with dental implants. Many patients report a positive impact not only on their physical health but on their overall quality of life.
One of the biggest advantages is improved oral health. When a person loses a tooth, they lose stimulation from its root in that part of the mouth. As a result, the body determines that fewer nutrients are needed and redirect them elsewhere. The jawbone often begins to shrink. Because dental implants replace both the tooth and the root, stimulation is restored and nutrients can be rerouted back to the mouth. Thus implants restore lost bone, prevent future tissue loss, and the shifting of neighboring teeth.
Preparing for Implants
For a successful treatment, patients must have sufficient jawbone tissue to support potential implants. Because bone deterioration is such a common problem after tooth loss, patients may require preparatory procedures such as bone grafting or sinus lifts to encourage bone growth in the months before implant placement.
The Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Center of Santa Fe
Dr. Sean Healy and the team at The Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Center of Santa Fe are proud to provide top-quality care to our patients. We use the latest dental technology and techniques to improve the health and appearance of your smile.
For more information about our services, contact our practice online or call (505) 984-0694 today.
“I was nervous... but Dr. Healy and his nurses put me at ease, and he even gave me a call the evening after surgery to make sure I was ok.” From a Google Review