Implants are a revolutionary treatment that, only recently, has been available as an affordable treatment option for every patient. Before development of dental implants, dentures, partials or bridges were the only alternatives to replacing missing teeth. Dr. Jouett has undergone special continuing education at the University of Texas Health Science Center Dental School in San Antonio, as well as at the OCO Biomedical training center in New Mexico in order to provide his patients with the latest in implant technology and treatment options.
Implants are titanium fixtures that are placed in the area of where the tooth root normally occupied. Once healed, implants become anchored to the bone and act as a foundation for an artificial tooth crown or permanent bridge. In some cases, implants can also be used to attach dentures (see Implant Dentures). Not everyone is a candidate for a dental implant, which is why it is important to first have an exam in our office prior to the placement appointment. For an implant to be successful, patients must have adequate bone available, not be immunocompromised or have active periodontal disease. In all cases, dental implants require strict oral hygiene.
After the initial exam, the implant fixture is placed which will be the new “root” and is allowed to heal. Following the procedure, a period of time (three to six months) is required for the implant to integrate to the bone and anchor the device. At a follow up appointment, once the implant has integrated into the bone, the implant is uncovered and an abutment (which is a like a little post that fits on top of the implant) will be placed in order to restore the implant. An impression is taken and a crown is fabricated, just like a natural tooth.
Implants can be placed safely and effectively using only local anesthesia. Most patients say the procedure feels similar to a filling procedure. If necessary, our office also provides oral sedation services to make you feel more comfortable. Like any restoration, implants require diligent oral hygiene and proper care to ensure they last a long time. Implants have come a long way so that today they mimic the look and feel of natural teeth! Call Smile Restorations at 979-229-1121 today for an implant exam and an evaluation of your overall oral health!