Dental implants are an ideal solution for people who, for some reason, have lost their teeth and, as a result, they cannot live a full life. Missing teeth make it uncomfortable. Teeth implantation is a dental procedure aimed to replace the missing natural teeth in any part of the oral cavity. The artificial teeth that replace the missing ones are visually and functionally identical to natural human teeth. As opposed to traditional prosthetics methods, dental implants are physiologically more suitable for oral cavity structure as they allow to completely preserve the appearance and functionality of the natural teeth.
A dental implant is an artificial base – a screw placed in a patient’s jawbone that is made from titanium which has a high biological compatibility with the human body tissues. The dental implant consists of several parts. Their shape and size is defined by the dentist taking into consideration the patient’s individual characteristics as regards the shape of the jawbone, structure of gums and type of teeth to be replaced – incisors, canines, premolars and molars.
1. A titanium screw placed into a patient’s jawbone. In accordance with the patient’s jaw structure, the screw of particular length, width and depth is made. The surface of this screw is covered with a special material to enhance the tight fit to the bone (osseointegration). The tooth root analogue is produced as a result, so dental crown restoration can be processed further.
2. A gum former. This is a titanium screw of the particular shape that is temporary placed into the dental implant above the gum level to create a nice gum firmly attached to the dental implant.
3. An abutment. This is an analogue of the dental screw. When the gum former has been removed, the abutment is put and fixed into the dental implant. It is up to the patient which one to choose – a zirconia or metal one. The metal abutment can be preferable because of a relatively low cost. It is suitable for patients with the satisfying thickness of the gums or when the implantation is carried out deep in oral cavity. A zirconia abutment, in its turn, is more expensive, but it is more esthetic for applying on front teeth – zirconium is not visible through the thin gum. It is used when the patient chooses zirconium dental crowns.
4. A dental crown. According to the patient’s choice, the dental crown is made from zirconium or metal-ceramics to be placed and attached to the abutment. The dental crown is visually and functionally identical to natural teeth.
Dental implantation process consists of two main stages. The first stage includes the surgical procedure of dental implant placement into the jawbone, while the second stage is making a dental impression and producing a dental crown. The dental implantation procedure is carried out with local anesthesia in sterility a dentist’s room.
To get the access to the jawbone, the dentist cuts the patient’s gum.
The canal is created in the jawbone that completely corresponds to the chosen dental implant in size and shape. If the dentist comes to the conclusion that, to place the dental implant, the amount of bone volume is not enough, bone grafting is necessary before creating the canal and implantation.
The dental implant is screwed into the created canal and covered by the gum. The process of osseointegration (bone augmentation with the dental implant) takes 2 to 6 months. Then, X-ray examination is necessary again to evaluate the situation.
After the successful bone augmentation with the dental implant, the dentist cuts the patient’s gum and places gum former on the implant approximately for 2 weeks, to create the correct gum contour around the new tooth.
In 2 weeks, the prosthetics stage begins. A dental model is created in order to make the wax dental model of the prosthesis in the dental technician’s laboratory.
Based on the wax dental model, the dental crown is made in the dental technician’s laboratory. The dental crown has the particular shape and colour having considered the shape of face and personal preferences of the patient’s.
When the dental crown is made, the dentist puts it into the patient’s oral cavity and attaches it for several months with the temporary cement, so that corrections can be made if necessary.
When the dentist confirms that the dental crown is completely fit, it is attached with the permanent cement.
To check the functioning of the placed implant the patient is to have X-ray examination from time to time.
Before dental implantation procedure, the dentist evaluates the general condition of the patient’s health, makes the X-ray examination of the jawbone and its thickness, checks the condition of soft and hard bones in the oral cavity in order to choose the most efficient implantation method. Despite the fact that dental implantation procedure both time-consuming and takes much money, unlike the traditional prosthetics, dental implantation is a long-term investment into fighting dental problems. Dental implants are made from material that is biologically compatible with human body tissues – titanium, that is why they can serve the whole life if the patient takes the appropriate care of dental hygiene.