Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Associates

Planning the Placement of Dental Implants

May 1, 2015 @ 10:50 AM — by markplatt
Tagged with: Dental Implants Restorative Dentistry

When properly placed, dental implants offer unparalleled support for dental restorations, making them an optimal choice for many patients. Due to their integration with the jawbone, though, the placement of implants requires extensive knowledge and planning on the part of the surgeon. At our Montgomery practice, we pride ourselves on our specialized knowledge of dental implant surgery, giving our patients the sort of care and expertise needed for an effective procedure and recovery. If you plan on receiving implants in the near future, take a moment to learn how the placement of implants is determined and implemented.

The Importance of Proper Placement

Dental implants require even more planning and precision than most other types of oral surgery. This is because implants require a months-long process of osseointegration, or natural integration with surrounding bone tissue. For this reason, the right type and length of implant must be chosen to properly fit within the mouth, and it must be installed at a precise location and angle so as to properly replicate the natural position of a tooth’s roots. Our experienced and skilled surgeons will determine all of this ahead of time through evaluations and X-rays, ensuring success even before the surgery begins. 

Pre-surgical Evaluations

When first considering dental implants, patients must undergo an evaluation to determine whether they can reliably have them installed. During this evaluation, the patient’s gum and jaw health will be assessed first. In order for the implants to properly heal with nearby soft tissues, a patient must have relatively healthy gums that are free of disease. The jawbone must also be healthy enough to support implants. In the event of bone loss, we may recommend a bone graft in order to bulk up the jaw’s structure prior to implant surgery.

If a patient is deemed a good candidate for implants, X-rays will be used to plan the best placement for each potential implant. These images will help reveal what type, size, and angle of implant will yield the most successful results and provide the best stability for dental restorations.  

Number of Implants

Another consideration when receiving dental implants is the type of restoration to be used in conjunction with them. For the individual replacement of single teeth, implants will simply act as the roots of each missing tooth to be crowned. This is generally a good option when replacing one or two teeth, or replacements that are in different areas of the mouth. For multiple teeth in a single area, however, larger restorations may only need two implants for support. A dental bridge, for instance, can be supported by one implant at each end, allowing it to span a larger area while replacing all teeth between the implants. For patients who have a healthy natural tooth that may be used for support, only one dental implant may be needed for a bridge.

Similarly, entire dentures may be effectively held in place through just a few implants. This solves many of the problems typically associated with loose dentures, such as instability, discomfort, and speech impediments. If you are considering dental implants for multiple lost teeth, rest assured that we will suggest an appropriate number of implants to best support your chosen restoration.    

Learn More about the Implant Process

Dental implants require multiple visits and a gradual recovery process in order to ensure long-term success. Of course, the results offer patients a brand new healthy smile. To learn more about the procedure or your candidacy for it, contact us to schedule an appointment at one of our three offices.