Dental implants are a common treatment when natural teeth have fallen out or been extracted. Implants allow you to chew and talk more comfortably than you would with missing teeth. And implants offer valuable structural support to neighboring teeth.
The procedure isn't anything to be afraid of, even if you require additional treatments such as bone grafts to hold the implant into place. And the process of implants offers some interesting facts you might not find in the dentist's office.
You Might Get All Implants in One Day -- Even with Many Missing Teeth
If you're missing a series of teeth in a row, your main options are a partial denture plate or a modified implant method called an all-on-4 dental implant. The four refers to the number of implants that will need to be placed at strategic locations on your jaw. These four teeth will serve as the foundation for a more secure version of a partial denture.
Your dentist might place the implant teeth in a day with further appointments made to affix the dentures. The denture will snap down on the artificial tooth roots. These roots offer more stability while chewing or speaking than a traditional denture plate, which fits over natural teeth but mostly rests on the gums.
Your Sinus Might Get Moved
If you've ever had a sinus infection cause a toothache, or vice versa, then you probably figured out that the two regions are linked. There are actually four parts to the sinus, and each part resides in a different part of your head. It's the maxillary sinus that lives just above your molar teeth.
If you've lost a molar due to advanced decay, then there's a chance that the underlying bone is also compromised. Your dentist might need to perform a bone graft in order to successfully fuse the implant to the bone for stability. Depending on the level of decay, in order to perform the graft your dentist might have to scoot your sinus out of the way.
This won't cause you any problems with your sinus since the bone is essentially going back to its original position.
Your Bone Graft Might Come from a Cow
The bone for a bone graft can be harvested from another part of your own mouth. But that makes for even more surgery, cuts and recovery time. An easier and popular source for the graft is bovine bone.
Your dentist would implant the bovine bone in your jaw where your own bone has become too weak and decayed to support an implant. Eventually, your own tissue will recognize the graft and begin to heal around it. This healing process also involves your own bone reproducing to meld with the bovine bone.
Why use cow bone? It's simply a readily available, reliable graft source that the human body tends to respond to well. If the idea is way too weird for you, there are synthetic grafts available or you can opt for using your own bone.
Contact a dentist like GumDocs today to learn more about dental implants.