Function and aesthetics of natural teeth
Teeth are, apart from their vital function as masticatory organs, crucial to the harmonious expression created by your face, i.e., cosmetic appearance, facial gestures, manifestations of enjoyment, and carefree laughter. They are a necessity for good verbal communication and mandatory for aesthetics. Their status in all walks of life provides a benchmark to the lifestyle of the individual.
The next best thing to natural teeth.
The problem: loss of teeth
In the course of aging, teeth can be lost due to caries, gum diseases, or accidents. Loss of a single front tooth may cause more embarrassment than the loss of multiple back teeth. The loss of a tooth can alter function and aesthetics and both eating and your appearance may be influenced. For obvious reasons, you, as the patient, are keen to replace your lost teeth in as inconspicuous a manner as feasible. The degree of urgency depends on the position of tooth loss and your expectations.
Medically possible solutions/conventional methods
Tooth replacement has often required the fitting of artificial crowns or teeth in the form of bridges and removable partial or full dentures. In some of these cases, tissue from healthy adjacent teeth would need to be ground away in order to provide a secure fit for these artificial appliances. In using this method the removed tooth root would not be replaced, the gap in the jaw bone would remain, and the bone could recede: the mass of the originally existing bone substance would continue to decline over the years as it “atrophies”. This can often lead to badly fitting dentures.
A “natural” solution
Such disadvantages can now be drastically diminished by using dental implants for tooth replacement. Teeth substituted by implants mean that the tooth loss is effectively offset in both the root and crown areas. Implants, or what may otherwise be called “artificial tooth roots”, are anchored in the jaw bone to provide a stable foundation. The replacement teeth are then firmly attached to this. In the event of tooth loss, implants preserve the healthy tooth substance. They can also safeguard the bone structure and reduce “atrophy” by functional and adequate loading of the jaws. In many cases, the patient is spared the drawbacks of a removable denture.
When can implants be used?
Provided the medical and anatomical conditions are met (e.g., the body must have finished growing), there are no upper age limits for this method of treatment, which can be used to close both small and large gaps in the dentition. Implants can be fitted in younger patients as well as in those of advanced years. In all cases, the quality and quantity of individual bone substance and state of the dentition will be carefully evaluated by our dentists before implantation.
Which teeth can be replaced by implants?
The single implant as a “tooth root surrogate” is the most elegant way of closing the gap to produce a cosmetically satisfactory result. The implant still feels just like your own tooth. Bone loss in the jaw (“atrophy”) is reduced, and the existing tooth substance is preserved since healthy adjacent teeth do not need to be ground down.
Here, too, implants represent the ideal alternative: they can either be used to fill the gap or else serve as additional supporting abutments for carrying a bridge. Implant-borne prosthetic devices are normally smaller than conventional ones, thus reducing risks of failure.
Shortened rows of teeth
If the molars are missing in a jaw, the conventional solution is to restore masticatory function by a removable partial denture. Implants, on the other hand, allow solid fixation of a “natural” replacement.
If in lower jaws, there are no teeth left, implants are often employed for small bar-borne, removable constructions, or the implant-borne superstructure can also be firmly and securely fixed on the implant.
Function of implants
The dental implant is an artificial foundation that replaces your natural tooth root. The implant body is surgically inserted into the jaw bone, where it then anchors with the bone. A healing period of about three to four months is expected on average. During healing, ITI Dental Implants are not covered by soft tissue. There is no need for a second surgical intervention when in a second phase the subsequent replacement tooth is fastened to the implant. As opposed to other dental implant systems, with ITI ® Dental implants replacement teeth can directly be mounted on the implant head sparing the bother of yet another operation.
These days, implants are made from commercially pure titanium. This material is particularly well tolerated by the body tissues and no allergic reactions have been reported, so far. The permanent bone anchorage and the tight fit with the gum tissue offer a solid base for your replacement tooth.
Implant benefits at a glance
- Healthy tooth substance is preserved – no grinding down of adjacent teeth required
- Securely fitting, fixed tooth replacement possible
- Implants have a long lifespan
- Aesthetic appearance, speech, and facial expression can be restored
- Implants give you a natural feeling like your own teeth
Provided anatomical and medical conditions are met, any gap in the teeth can be closed with an implant. But only after your dentist has undertaken a comprehensive assessment of your health, including a thorough oral examination and an X-ray of the jaw bone, can he recommend implantation or – if applicable – reject this as an option. The basic prerequisites for implantation are adequate bone quality and quantity, perfect oral hygiene, and normal wound healing capacity of the body. Before the implantation, your natural teeth will be made sound. Therefore any gum disease will need to be treated and fully stabilized.
With regard to inconvenience, pain, and duration, the whole operation can more or less be compared to the extraction of a back tooth (molar). Under local anesthesia, the jaw is exposed and the implant inserted. The wound is closed, and the implant then beds in by anchoring in the surrounding bone.
The healing phase of your implant will then be checked periodically by your dentist. Further X-rays will be taken in order to check how the bone is joining with the surface of the implant. After an average period of three to four months, the implant should be fully integrated into the jaw bone. The secure fitting of your new tooth can now be planned and executed. If ITI Dental Implants are used, no further surgical procedures are required.
Now, it’s up to you to safeguard the positive outcome of your implant operation by conscientiously looking after your teeth. The long-term success of an implant largely depends on scrupulous oral hygiene, together with regular professional controls carried out by your dentist. Any lack of care in this area can lead to inflammation of the gum tissue and the bone with consequent loss of attachment. Ultimately, this can lead to removal of the implant. Similar to the way you would expect to lose your natural teeth if you did not care for and clean them regularly.
Since every implant surgery represents a wholly individual curative measure that has to be tailored to meet the specific requirements in each case, no general financial guidelines can be given. Please, ask your dentist for a personal treatment and cost plan. This will provide you with an assessment of the cost to be expected. Please also keep in mind that often with implant procedures additional specialists and their associated fees may be involved outside of Riken Dental’s treatment plan.
Several million patients worldwide have experienced the benefits of implant-based tooth replacement. Implantology has developed into a fully accepted alternative to “conventional” tooth replacement. When properly looked after, implants currently offer the most attractive and permanent solution for tooth replacement. ITI ® Dental implants have been scientifically well established for more than twenty years.
Research, development, production, and distribution of ITI ® Dental Implants are subject to continuous, strict quality controls. With meticulous care, your ITI ® Dental Implants can function to your satisfaction for a long time.
In future, much depends on you as to safeguarding the long-term success of what your dentist’s craftsmanship has accomplished. Conscientious oral hygiene is crucial for a long, uncomplicated lifespan of your implant-supported restoration. Microbiological plaque is a threat to implants just as it is to natural teeth. Your dentist’s team will take pleasure in telling you everything about proper care and the equipment for adequately looking after your new tooth replacement.
“Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner”.