4420 Conlin Street, Suite 204, Metairie, LA 70006 | Phone (504) 456-0964

Dental Implants

With dental implants, people are rediscovering the comfort and confidence to eat, speak, laugh, and enjoy life. They are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth which look, feel, and function like natural teeth. The person who has lost teeth regains the ability to eat virtually anything and can smile with confidence, knowing that their teeth appear natural.

 

These implants are tiny titanium posts that are placed into the jawbone where teeth are missing. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. In addition, implants can help preserve facial structure and prevent the bone deterioration which occurs when teeth are missing.

 

If you, like many others, feel implants are the clear choice for you, we ask that you undergo a dental/radiographic examination and health history. During these consultation visits, your specific needs and considerations will be addressed. Your questions and concerns are important to us, and we will closely work with you to help make your procedure a success.

 

A single prosthesis (crown) is used to replace one missing tooth – each prosthetic tooth attaches to its own implant. A partial prosthesis (fixed bridge) can replace two or more teeth and may require only two or three implants. A complete dental prosthesis (fixed bridge) replaces all the teeth in your upper or lower jaw. The number of implants varies depending upon which type of complete prosthesis (removable or fixed) is recommended. A removable prosthesis (over denture) attaches to a bar or ball in socket attachments, whereas a fixed prosthesis is permanent and removable only by the dentist.

 

The Surgical Procedure

 

Metal anchors are surgically placed into the jawbone, which act as tooth root substitutes. Small posts are then attached to the implant, which protrude through the gums. These posts provide stable anchors for artificial replacement teeth.

 

For most patients, the placement of the metal anchors involves two surgical procedures. First, the anchors are placed within your jawbone. For the first 3-4 months following surgery, the anchors are beneath the surface of the gums, gradually bonding with the jawbone. You should be able to wear temporary dentures and eat a soft diet during this time. At the same time, your dentist designs the final bridgework or denture, which will ultimately improve both function and aesthetics.

 

After the anchor has bonded to the jawbone, the second phase begins. Next, we will uncover the implants and attach a small healing collar and start making your new tooth (or teeth). An impression must be taken to make the tooth replacements. Posts or attachments can be connected to the anchors, and then teeth replacements are created over the posts or attachments. The entire procedure usually takes 6-8 months. Most patients do not experience any disruption in their daily life. In many situations, the entire process takes only 3 months.  With new technology some implants can be placed with a tooth placed on the implant the same day.