dr jessica hill DMD
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ALEXANDRIA VA

 

703-822-7842

Dental Implants

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dental implant

1.Natural Tooth
2.Dental Implant
3.Tooth Crown

What is a dental implant?

A dental implant is a small part made of titanium or titanium zirconium which is placed in the jaw bone in place of the missing natural tooth root. The implant can be surgically inserted under local anesthetic on an outpatient basis. Titanium is generally well-tolerated by the human body and bone has been shown to bond well to titanium. Once healed, the artificial root acts as a base for fixing individual crowns and multi-tooth bridges. The implant can also be used as an anchor for entire dental prostheses.

Evaluation for Dental Implants

If, like many others, you feel implant dentistry is the 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 by either Dr. Hill or by an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon referred by our practice. Your questions and concerns are important to us and our team will work with you very closely to help make your procedure a success.

When can a dental implant be used?

This modern dental-medical method has been scientifically tested and used for decades. Qualified dentists and oral surgeons are offering their patients this attractive long-term solution.
For over 30 years now, it has been possible to replace tooth roots almost entirely with dental implants: individual tooth replacement, replacement of more than one tooth and for the replacement of all teeth.

How are Dental Implants placed?

The dentist investigates and assesses which treatment is possible for the respective patient using X-rays. She discusses the advantages and disadvantages of various denture solutions. Using the X-ray images or computer tomographs (for three-dimensional imaging) and plaster models, the length and diameter of the implant are determined by the dentist. Afterwards, the position of the implant is established.

Sufficient bone must be present in order for implantation to go ahead. There are patients who have insufficient substance and require bone augmentation. This may happen, for example, if a tooth has been missing for a long time – the jaw may have slowly receded. As a consequence, the bone subsequently needs to be built up.

Implantation
An artificial tooth root is normally inserted under local anesthetic. The dentist creates a suitable “bed” in the jaw bone in which the implant is placed. Depending on the individual case, a temporary restoration may be placed on the implant during the healing stage. This allows the patient to already enjoy a natural looking smile early in the process.

Healing
Until the implant is securely attached to the jaw bone, a healing phase of between six weeks and a few months is necessary – depending on the individual medical situation. After approximately one week, the stitches are removed. Patients should keep in mind that diligent oral hygiene is vital for healing.

The new teeth
Crown, bridge or denture – the dental laboratory uses an impression to produce the individual restoration, which will be inserted after healing.

Aftercare
Just like a natural root, the implant may come out if it is not regularly looked after. Professional implant hygiene increases the life span of new teeth. Bad oral hygiene and smoking may destroy an implant

 



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