Dental implants used to be the gold standard for replacing missing teeth, according to the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS).
Implants not only look, feel and function like natural teeth, but they also help prevent bone loss. They can last a lifetime with proper care, whereas bridges and partial dentures may need to be replaced at some point.
However, not all implant surgeries are the same. Implants are placed in one of two ways — with standard procedures or through the teeth-in-a-day process.
Procedures for Standard Dental Implants
Standard implant surgery is not a one-time procedure. It involves a series of steps over the course of several months.
First, if you lack adequate bone tissue in the jaw to support an implant, a bone graft may be necessary. Once the grafted tissue has healed and fused to the jawbone, a titanium post is placed in the bone. This post acts as a replacement tooth root. After another period of healing, the oral surgeon attaches the abutment, a small metal connector post.
The final step for standard dental implants is attaching the new replacement crown to the abutment. Crowns are designed to blend in perfectly with your natural teeth, closely matching their color, size and shape.
How the Teeth-in-a-Day Process Works
Like standard implants, the teeth-in-a-day procedure provides you with replacement teeth that are very much like natural teeth. However, this process is different — and much faster — than a standard implant procedure.
With this procedure, the titanium replacement roots and abutments are placed in a single office visit. At the same time, temporary acrylic crowns are attached. Approximately one month later, after you have adequately healed, permanent crowns are put in place.
Which Type of Dental Implants Should You Choose?
Nearly anyone can have implant surgery, and the procedure has an overall success rate of more than 95 percent. However, not everyone is a candidate for teeth in a day.
If you have bone loss in the jaw, the standard process for dental implants will be the likely recommendation. The titanium posts can be placed only in patients with healthy, supportive jawbones. If you have bone loss, a graft will be required.
If, however, your jawbone is in good shape, our surgeons will work with you to make the right choice.
Both types of implant procedures can restore your beautiful, healthy smile. The experts at Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery of Utah, serving the greater Salt Lake City area, specialize in restorations as well as oral surgery and related procedures. Contact our office today to schedule a consultation to discuss your options for dental implants.