Dr. Sweeney-Fonseca explains what a dental implant is and the process behind it.
There is a number of different options to have your tooth replaced. One of the ways would be with an artificial root, or patients know more like an implant. So basically, the surgeon would put the artificial root right into where the missing tooth is, and then the general dentist, or cosmetic dentist, would actually place the crown right on top of it. So, that’s one way.
The other way would be what’s called fixed bridge, which used to be very popular before we had implants that are so successful these days, but the benefit of bridge would be that it’s quick, and instantaneous. There is no surgery with it, and it’s usually okay to do it when the other teeth next to it are compromised, and they would need to be crowned already, regardless. But if you have two healthy teeth next to it, then to go with the option like a bridge would really be my last suggestion, because again, with an implant being so, so successful, there is no reason to be cutting or preparing the healthy teeth.
The other way to replace missing teeth, it could be one missing tooth, you can do one artificial root, but what’s most exciting to me, is the patients who have gone with dentures that are falling down, or partial dentures where the metal is showing all over, and it cuts their teeth, and moves their teeth, and causes so much damage, and when you take it out, there is no teeth. Very uncomfortable restorations.
For us, at this day and age, to be able to literally give the patient a third set of teeth, and to go and throw the metal, partial, hurting denture out, and put the actual teeth in. And I have pictures of cases and cases where we do that, anything from patients that haven’t had teeth for years and years, and they’re tired of their face sagging with the dentures, and it doesn’t look good, or they’re eating and they’re self-conscious, is it going to fall out, where we can actually team up with a surgeon, and we can do the surgery, and put the teeth in, and screw them in in one day. That’s how far that dentistry has come.