Types Of Dental Implants & How They Work
What are dental implants?
Dental implants are replacement teeth that are fixed into the jaw using titanium ‘roots’. Implants are an alternative to dentures that look more natural and don’t need removing at night.
Modern implant methods use minimally invasive techniques, allowing for faster healing and better long-term outcomes.
When a row of teeth needs replacing, All-On-4 implants allow the load to be spread evenly across the jaw, using only four implants to secure the artificial teeth.
Dental implants can also replace a single tooth or a few teeth where a complete replacement arch is not required.
Dental implants can replace one missing tooth, a few teeth or a whole row of teeth. To learn more about the options, book a complimentary consultation with a dental implant expert.
Dental implant structure: how implants work
Dental implants provide a long-term solution to the loss of teeth, so you can go about your day just as you did when you had a complete set of healthy teeth.
Implants consist of three sections:
- Implant: a titanium ‘screw’ implanted into the jaw to form an anchor or root for the new artificial tooth.
- Abutment: The abutment connects the dental implant to the final crown.
- Crown: The artificial tooth, the top section that replaces the missing tooth.
The crown will look, feel and function like natural teeth.
Implants are only the restoration option that maintains the jawbone health and stimulates its growth.
Dental implant techniques
Dental implants vary depending on how much bone is present in the jaw.
Endosteal implants: This style of implant acts as a root for the tooth. The implant is titanium with small screws and an ‘alloplastic’ material that forms an artificial tissue graft.
Your dentist surgically inserts the titanium root into the jaw bone. In time, the titanium screw bonds with the bone through osseointegration. The body accepts the implant as an integral part of the mouth structure.
Once the endosteal implant has had time to bond with the bone, the crown (artificial tooth) can be added.
Subperiosteal implants: The dental implant inserts under the gum rather than being surgically inserted into the jaw. This type of implant may be suitable for anyone without enough natural jawbone to support an implant.
4 types of dental implants
There are different dental implants designed to replace missing teeth based on the extent of tooth loss.
If only one tooth is missing, you may want to replace it to assist with eating and comfort in the mouth.
A single tooth implant requires one screw that connects to one dental crown or artificial tooth.
When you lose a tooth, the gum and bone begin to change shape. If a front tooth is damaged, inserting the implant as soon as possible after tooth removal will help ensure an aesthetically pleasing result.
Where several teeth are missing, an implant can provide support for a dental bridge. An implant bridge reduces pressure on the natural teeth, improves ease when eating and comfort with speaking.
All-on-4 dental implants
All-on-4 implants are a permanent restoration for a row of missing teeth. This procedure is minimally invasive, using four implants to support an arch of teeth. The new arch of teeth is supported by just four implants. This technique has many advantages, including being suitable for patients with reduced bone in the jaw.
The prosthesis is flexible to allow speech and eating, designed to look like natural teeth. The process is generally more comfortable for patients with a higher success rate than dentures.
Zygoma Dental implants
Zygoma dental implants attach to the cheekbone (zygoma) rather than the jaw bone. Zygoma implants are an option when the jaw bone has deteriorated. Zygoma dental implants provide an alternative to bone grafting, a potentially uncomfortable procedure.
Risk factors of dental implants
Some indicators may increase the risk of dental implants, such as smoking or medications.
In your initial complimentary consultation, your dentist will ask you questions about your health and any medications you may be taking to determine whether dental implants are suitable.
Good oral health care at home, including eating a wide variety of healthy foods, brushing and flossing, will help to improve the longevity and comfort of dental implants.
Dental surgery is required to insert the implant, and some discomfort is normal. You may experience:
- Swelling of face and gums
- Some bruising
- Minor bleeding
- Pain at the implant site
However, if you do experience prolonged bleeding, sinus issues, infection or a tingling sensation, get in touch with your dentist right away. Headaches may indicate sinus issues, so if these symptoms persist, check with your dentist.
How much do dental implants cost?
The cost of dental implants varies depending on the procedure required. In your initial consultation, you can ask about the options and prices.
Most health insurers provide partial cover for dental care. At The Point Dental, we offer flexible payment options to enable you to experience a healthy smile as soon as possible.
Replace missing teeth with dental implants for a long-lasting, natural-looking solution. Book a complimentary consultation to learn more about the options for getting dental implants if you experience dental anxiety.