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Prosthodontic Procedure: Dental Implants

See more images in our Dental Implants image gallery

Dental Implants Prosthodontic Case: Juliana (before and after)

Dental implants are small, titanium cylinders that are surgically placed in the jaw bone. After a few months of healing, the implant will function as a tooth root substitute. The prosthodontist then begins the process of replacing the missing tooth or teeth.

Implants provide a solid foundation (a root substitute) that will support crowns, fixed bridges and partial or complete dentures, which are used by the prosthodontist for the restoration of teeth. Implants also minimize significant bone atrophy (shrinkage), which occurs when there are missing teeth. When the upper and lower jaw bone are preserved, missing teeth can be replaced through the combined efforts of the prosthodontist and an oral surgeon.

To replace missing teeth, a prosthodontist may recommend a fixed bridge or removable partial denture. These prostheses require preparation of adjacent natural teeth to support the replacement teeth. However, the placement of implants to retain crowns, fixed bridges, or removable dentures has now provided significant benefits in improved esthetics, comfort and function for the patient.

Fortunately, dental implants have revolutionized the specialty of prosthodontics by offering this treatment option as a predictable, functional, and esthetic solution. By allowing a missing tooth (or teeth) to be restored to optimal appearance and function without altering any adjacent natural teeth, dental implants have become the standard of care for the replacement of teeth.

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