In a world where aesthetics and beauty play a major role in image building, dental implants have made a mar for themselves as more clients are queuing up at the dentist’s clinic to rebuild their smile aesthetics. Unlike before, today you can easily fill gaps and replace missing teeth with dental implants.
A dental implant involves a root device made of titanium which is placed within the bone. The jaw bone slowly accepts this root device and osseointegration i.e. fusion of the implant with the surrounding bone takes place. Once the implants have fused together, a crown is made and fitted on top of the root device. This crown resembles a tooth and thus restores the smile aesthetics.
Although the dental implants are an extremely successful procedure, it requires much planning and steps. The following steps are usually followed while performing a dental implant:
Before the actual surgery takes place, extensive planning is undertaken in order to identify the various important structures such as the shape and size of the bone, the inferior alveolar nerve etc.
2-D radiographs are taken prior to surgery as are CT scans which are important to plan the surgery.
In order to place the implant into the bone either hand osteotomes or precision drills are used. Once the implant has been placed, sufficient time is given for it to use with the jawbone and heal completely. Only after it heals, crown is placed on the implant.
In edentulous cases, a pilot hole is made into the jawbone, taking care not to disturb the vital structures. This pilot hole is made by using precision drills and occurs in several steps. The pilot hole is gradually expanded using progressively wider drills. The implant screw is placed at a precise torque in order to avoid overload to the surrounding bone. Extreme care is taken while drilling the hole in order to maintain the vital structures.
The amount of time required for the implant to heal varies widely. Usually a period of 4-6 months is required for the implant to fuse as well as heal completely. Early loading of implant may cause complications. Minimally invasive techniques reduce the healing time required by nearly 2- 3 months. The entire process of placing implant, healing period, graft and eventually new implant may require nearly 18 months.
3- D Implants
As mentioned earlier, dentists require an image of the site in order to plan the dental implant procedure efficiently. But unlike the previous methods used for imaging, researchers have found that the if the mouth is imaged using 3- D CT scans, dentists are able to create as well as insert a complete dental implant within a single day. Earlier, dentists had to wait six months between placing the implant and the subsequent fixing of the crown, but with this imaging technique a surgeon can locate the exact spot where the implant has to be placed. The implant is preceded by immersing the implant surface in an acid bath followed by an anodic electronic charge which creates a porous surface; this hastens the fixation of the implant on to the bone.
Statistics show that nearly 100 million Americans have missing teeth; in order to solve this most people opt for dentures or crowns, which are not long lasting and are also unnatural to look at. There are many who suffer from weakened bad teeth and face acute pain when the teeth come in contact with cold drinks or hot drinks. In order to fight this problem, dentists pull out the teeth, leaving the patients with a toothless smile. But thanks to 3- D implant procedures, patients can now get new permanent teeth within an hour. According to Dr. Liene Molly, M.D, Ph.D., D.D.S and periodontist from the University of Maryland Dental School in Baltimore, MD, this new procedure is faster as well as a less painful solution for missing teeth. The traditional method required having two surgeries, but with this new procedure, only surgery is required. Traditional implants could take almost a year to complete, but a 3- D implant would reduce it to just a day’s work.
Periodontists first use a CT scan to identify the structure of the mouth and make a 3- D model of the same. This model acts as a guide for doctors to locate the exact spot within the mouth where the implant, crown and top are all placed together using minimally invasive surgery. This facility helps doctor visualize the inside of the patient’s mouth in order to make the placement. This methodology is much more effective, accurate and beneficial as it restores smile aesthetics, provides the ability to eat and chew and improve the overall quality of life. The entire procedure is performed only after the patient is put under local anesthesia.
A one day implant is made possible because the surfaces of the implants have been modified in order to support a higher rate of fixation to the bone. The implant surface is immersed in an acidic bath first which is followed by an anodic electronic charge in order to create a porous surface. TiUnite is incorporated as a bonding agent; the biomaterial is made up of titanium. This enables us the integration of the bone with the soft tissues that are present around the gumline. In this manner the implant is made to look more real as no dark line is created near the point of connection between the bone and the implant.
Benefits of 3D Implants
- It is a short procedure and requires only a day as opposed to six months required formerly.
- The new 3-D imaging facility enables dentists to model as well as plan the entire restoration from starting till end.
- The bone can be studied in every direction using the images rather than before wherein the surgeon had to loosen the gum around the bone to inspect it.
- Less swelling, inflammation and bruising apart from quick and fast finish of the procedure.
It is thus evident that 3-D implant procedures are the future of dental implants that will benefit the patient immensely.