Dental implants are changing the way people live. They are
designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth which
look, feel and function like natural teeth. The person who has
lost teeth regains the ability to eat virtually anything,
knowing that their teeth appear natural and that facial contours
will be preserved. Patients with dental implants can smile with
What are Dental Implants?
The dental implants themselves are small titanium screws,
which are surgically inserted into the jawbone where teeth are
missing. These metal anchors act as tooth root substitutes. The
bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for
artificial teeth. Small posts are then attached to the implant,
which protrude through the gums. These posts provide stable
anchors for artificial replacement teeth.
Dental implants also help preserve facial structure,
preventing the bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are
The Surgical Procedure
For most patients, the placement of dental implants involves
two surgical procedures. First, implants are placed within your
jawbone. For the first three to six months following surgery,
the implants are beneath the surface of the gums gradually
bonding with the jawbone.
After the implant has bonded to the jawbone, the second phase
begins. Your doctor will uncover the implants and attach small
posts, which will act as anchors for the artificial teeth. These
posts protrude through the gums. When the artificial teeth are
placed these posts will not be seen. The entire procedure
usually takes six to eight months. Most patients experience
minimal disruption in their daily life.
Using the most recent advances in dental implant technology,
your doctor may be able to place single stage implants. These
implants do not require a second procedure to uncover them.
There are even situations where the implants can be placed at
the same time as a tooth extraction further minimizing the
number of surgical procedures. Advances in dental implant
technology have made it possible in select cases to extract
teeth, and place implants with crowns or a denture at one visit.
This process, called "immediate loading" greatly simplifies the
Who actually performs the dental implant placement?
Dental implants are a team effort between an Oral and
Maxillofacial Surgeon and a Restorative Dentist. While your oral
surgeon performs the actual implant surgery, initial tooth
extractions and bone grafting if necessary, the restorative
dentist (your dentist) fits and makes the permanent prosthesis.
Your dentist will also make any temporary prosthesis needed
during the implant process.
What types of prostheses are available?
A single prosthesis (crown) is used to replace one missing
tooth; each prosthetic tooth attaches to its own implant. A
partial prosthesis (fixed bridge) can replace two or more teeth
and may require only two or three implants. A complete dental
prosthesis replaces all the teeth in your upper or lower jaw.
The number of implants varies depending upon which type of
complete prosthesis (removable or fixed) is recommended. A
removable prosthesis (over denture) attaches to a bar or ball in
socket attachments, whereas a fixed one is permanent and
removable only by the dentist.
Why dental implants?
Once you learn about dental implants, you finally realize
there is a way to improve your life when you are missing teeth.
When you lose several teeth - whether it's a new situation or
something you have lived with for years - chances are you have
never become fully accustomed to losing such a vital part of
Dental implants can be your doorway to renewed
self-confidence and peace of mind.
A Swedish scientist and orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Per-Ingvar
Branemark, developed this concept for oral rehabilitation more
than thirty-five years ago. With his pioneering research, Dr.
Branemark opened the door to a lifetime of renewed comfort and
self-confidence for millions of individuals facing the
frustration and embarrassment of tooth loss.
Why would you select dental implants over more traditional
types of restorations?
There are several reasons:
- You do not have to have adjacent teeth shaved down
- You can stabilize loose dentures
- Prevent bone loss
Are you a candidate for dental implants?
If you are considering dental implants, your mouth must be
examined thoroughly and your medical and dental history
reviewed. If you mouth is not ideal for implants, ways of
improving outcome, such as bone grafting, may be recommended.
What type of anesthesia is used?
The majority of dental implant procedures can be performed in
the office under local anesthesia, with or without IV
Do Dental implants need special care?
Once the implants are in place, they will serve you well for
many years if you take care of them and keep your mouth healthy.
This means taking the time for good oral hygiene (brushing and
flossing) and keeping regular appointments with your dental
Dental Implants in Spokane WA
If you are considering getting dental implants please
call us at (509) 321-1404 to schedule a consultation so we
can better answer your questions about dental implant
benefits and procedures, as well as cost and financing options.
Dental Implants Spokane
The Best Solution for Replacing Missing Teeth
Dental implants are usually the best treatment
option for replacing missing teeth. Instead of resting on the
gum line like removable dentures, or using adjacent teeth as
anchors (fixed bridges),
are long-term replacements that your oral and maxillofacial
surgeon surgically places in the jawbone.
In the past, our only option to restore a beautiful smile, as well
as the ability to eat and speak clearly, was to get a fixed bridge
or a removable denture. But fixed bridges and removable dentures are
not the perfect solution and often cause a number of other problems.
Removable dentures may slip or cause embarrassing clicking sounds while
eating or speaking. Fixed bridges can cause significant wear and stress
on attached teeth, trap food and plaque more easily and cause decay in
neighboring healthy teeth, and removable dentures may lead to bone loss
in the area where teeth are missing. Also, fixed bridges and removable
dentures usually need to be replaced every seven to 15 years.
Now there is preferred treatment solution for patients who are missing permanent teeth.
are long-term replacements that your oral and maxillofacial
surgeon surgically places in the jawbone. Composed of titanium
metal that "fuses" with the jawbone through a process called
dental implants never slip or make embarrassing noises that
advertise the fact that you have "false teeth," and never decay
like teeth anchoring fixed bridges. Because
dental implants fuse with the jawbone, bone loss is generally
not a problem.
Dental implants have been used with great success since the 1990’s, and the vast majority of
dental implants first placed by oral and maxillofacial surgeons in the
United States continue to still function at peak performance. More importantly, the recipients of those early
dental implants are still satisfied they made the
right choice. If properly cared for,
dental implants can last a lifetime.