Despite a desire to repair missing or damaged teeth, we encourage our patients to use caution because they may not be prepared for dental implants immediately. In fact, many patients are suffering from specific conditions that present challenges to dental implant placement. Luckily, there are some amazing supplemental procedures available that can help prepare these patients for tooth replacement. Read on to learn more about suitability for dental implant treatment and what can be done to assist with patient readiness.
Sometimes patients with dental bridges or removable dentures lose gum tissue or jawbone density over time. Later, when they elect to try dental implants, they find that the condition of their gum or jawbone tissues is not suitable for dental implants. The reason for this is that dental implants require a dense jawbone and healthy gum tissues to ensure the best chance of successful healing. Today, there are many options to fix these problems.
Two of the most commonly used procedures to prepare for dental implants are bone grafting and gum tissue augmentation. Both of these procedures add volume to places where healthy and dense tissue is necessary. Both procedures also assist patients in successfully preparing for their dental implant placement.
Sometimes dental bridges can cause gums to recede, leaving sensitive areas of root tissue exposed. This can cause pain, an increased risk of infection, and tooth decay. However, tissue augmentation can make gingival tissue more resistant to gum recession. During gum tissue grafting, a small tissue sample is harvested from the patient’s palate. This can be done before, or at the same time a dental implant is being placed. The specially harvested graft material will then be placed in the prepared area. The resulting tissue graft preserves the necessary soft tissue and makes the gums less likely to recede after surgery.
Dentures used to be the best option for patients who were dealing with tooth loss. They were easy, relatively inexpensive, and usually only took weeks to prepare. Unfortunately, dentures often cause muscles in the jaw to weaken. When this happens, the jawbone begins to deteriorate and flatten out over time. These patients often have sunken features and premature wrinkles which make them look years older than they actually are.
To combat bone deterioration after tooth loss, bone grafting procedures were created to help rebuild adequate jawbone volume. Initially, these procedures were designed to help patients wear dentures comfortably and chew normally. Early attempts were ineffective, painful, and unsuccessful. Later, doctors discovered that a small graft from a donated bone source could be attached to areas of the jaw lacking proper volume. The result was a stronger and more stable jawbone with enhanced suitability for dental implants.
Although you may be in a hurry to replace missing or damaged teeth, supplemental procedures can add healing time to your procedure. Sometimes supplemental procedures can be done at the same time as your dental implant placement. However, often the condition of jawbone or gum tissues requires that such procedures be done prior to placement of dental implants. On average, supplemental procedures can add 3-6 months of healing time to the total dental implant process.
If you know that you would like to try dental implants, we encourage you to take the first step and call our office for a consultation with Dr. Sayed. This appointment will allow us to examine your mouth, take x-rays, and discuss all of your treatment options. It is also the only way we can determine if supplemental procedures are necessary prior to dental implant placement.
Here at Pristine Periodontics and Implants, we know that not all patients are immediately ready for treatment despite the desire to repair their smiles. Today, thanks to bone and tissue grafting, many patients who were previously unable, can now take advantage of beautiful dental implants. If you would like more information, please check out the rest of our dental implants website or call us for a consultation now.
Dr. Abdullah Sayed
2425 East Lincoln St., Suite 100
Monday: 8AM - 5PM
Tuesday: 7AM - 2PM
Wednesday: 1PM - 7PM
Thursday: 8AM - 2PM