Dental implants revolutionized dental practice in the 1970s when dentist began using implants to replace missing teeth. However, the ancient Mayans were replacing teeth with implants made from various materials such as jade as long ago as 600 A.D. Amazingly, some of the primitive implants done so long ago were actually successful, fusing to the bone and becoming permanent.
What are dental implants?
A dental implant is actually the artificial root of the missing tooth. It is ‘implanted’ into the jaw and the replacement tooth (or bridge) is attached to it. People who have lost teeth because of an injury or periodontal disease may be good candidates for implants. The most common type of implant is endosteal, meaning that the screw, cylinder or other device is placed surgically into the jawbone. Endosteal implants are good choices for patients who currently have removable bridges or dentures as they can hold more than one tooth. The other type of implant is subperiosteal or on the bone; this type of implant is used when patients have minimal bone height. The posts are placed on top of the jaw, protruding through the gum.
What is the dental implant procedure?
Most patients will require two surgical procedures within six to eight months. The first surgery will place the implants into the jawbone. It takes up to four months for the implants to bond with the bone. During this time, the patient has temporaries and eats soft foods. The second surgery consists of uncovering the implants so that a healing collar can be attached. After this has healed, impressions can be taken for the new teeth. Posts are attached to the implants and the teeth are connected to the posts. The patients dazzling new smile is now permanent!
Dr. Baxter Perkinson & Associates are committed to delivering the highest quality dentistry in a safe, relaxing environment at a reasonable cost. Dr. Perkinson is a native Virginian with 41 years of dental experience. He is the president and founder of this multi-specialty practice that offers dental services from ten locations in Virginia. Someone who is interested in high quality dental implants in Richmond, VA should talk to an experienced dentist about the options available.