What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are designed to replace missing teeth. Simply put, they are small titanium components (resembling screws) which are surgically placed ("implanted") into the bone in the area where the tooth or teeth are missing. Shortly after, the bone begins to grow around the implant, securing it firmly in place (process called osseointegration). Implants can be used to replace a single tooth, several teeth or even all teeth (edentulous patients).

When properly maintained, dental implants represent an effective and long-lasting solution and are quickly becoming the treatment of choice for dentists and patients alike. They offer many advantages when compared to other traditional courses of treatment and allow a full range of restorative options.

It is important to note that dental implants represent only one component within a larger course of treatment. The implant itself serves as an "anchor" or support for the final prosthetic restoration, be it a dental crown, dental bridge or denture. It permanently holds the prosthetic restoration in place, thus significantly improving its functionality (i.e. the ability to bite and chew).

In the last few years, due to significant advances in technology and technique, the process of placement and restoration of implants has become much shorter and less invasive. In fact, in some cases it is actually possible to place dental implants and to restore them with temporary prosthetic teeth in the same appointment – All-On-Four®.