Dental Implants

Dental implants are the gold standard when it comes to replacing missing teeth – the next best thing to real teeth. Implants have revolutionized dentistry with cutting-edge technology and techniques that provide several important advantages over other tooth replacement methods.

But implant dentistry is more expensive than getting other types of artificial teeth, and unlike traditional dentures and dental bridges, involves surgery. Because of this, people who want to get the most from their investment in dental implants choose a specialist in implant dentistry and oral surgery – a prosthodontist.

If you’re considering getting dental implants, it’s important to know how they work and what sets prosthodontists apart from general dentists who do implants. This will help you to make an informed decision on whether you should choose a prosthodontist as your implant dentist. You can find out here what you need to know about implant dentistry and implants by a prosthodontist.

How Do Dental Implants Work?

Dental implants provide a permanent solution to tooth loss and have become an increasingly popular alternative to dentures and bridges. They can be used to replace a single tooth, a few teeth, or all your teeth.

The implant – a biocompatible rod typically made of titanium – is surgically inserted into the bone socket of a missing tooth. It fuses with the jawbone to form an artificial tooth root – something dentures and bridges don’t do. Implants are used with a dental crown to replace a single tooth, or to hold a denture or bridge in place if more teeth are missing.

Types of Dental Implants

Progress in dental implant technology over the years has led to the development of many different types of implants. These include:

  • Regular implants. Common, standard dental implants – known as endosteal implants – generally consist of two pieces with a diameter of 3.25 to 5 millimeters.
  • Mini implants. A mini implant is single implant with a diameter of less than 3mm. It has a ball-shaped end that protrudes from the jawbone. Mini implants can be used when a lot of jawbone structure has been lost.
  • Micro implants. Even smaller than mini implants, micro implants are used when space between teeth is tiny. Micro implants can be used instead of a less stable bridge.
  • Implant-supported overdentures. These types of implants provide a solution when someone has lost all their upper or lower teeth.
  • All-on-4 implants. With All-on-4 “teeth in a day” dental implants, four to six implants are placed in the upper or lower jaw to support a full dental bridge of 10 to 12 artificial teeth.

What Is a Prosthodontist?

A prosthodontist specializes in restoring oral health by repairing and replacing damaged or missing teeth. They do this with artificial appliances – dental prostheses such as implants, dentures, dental bridges, and crowns. In ensuring oral functionality, prosthodontists use their expertise in understanding the dynamics of a smile in order to provide the best cosmetic outcome as well. Prosthodontists undertake advanced, extensive training in complete oral rehabilitation, aesthetic restoration and replacement of teeth, and complex oral and facial surgery.

After four years of dental school, a prosthodontist completes a three-year hospital- or university-based residency program of prosthodontic training accredited by the American Dental Association (ADA). Unlike general dentists, prosthodontists are recognized by the ADA as experts in cosmetic restoration and replacement of teeth to achieve optimal appearance and oral functionality. They also specialize in cosmetic dental procedures to enhance smiles.

Why Choose Dental Implants?

People get dental implants because of the key benefits they offer compared with traditional dentures and bridges. Implants look and feel natural and work like real teeth. Individuals who’ve lost teeth or have unhealthy teeth that need extracting choose implants as a sound investment in maintaining future quality of life in terms of oral health and functionality, comfort and convenience. And dental implants allow you to smile in confidence.

Unlike cheaper tooth replacements such as bridges and removable dentures, implants can last a lifetime. In bonding with the jaw, implants not only provide a long-lasting solution to tooth loss but also help maintain facial structure and appearance. Dental implants have the highest success rate of any type of implant surgery, and multiple implants can be placed during a single appointment.

Unlike dental bridges, the dental implant procedure doesn’t require trimming of healthy structure of adjacent teeth. Unlike removable dentures, no special care is needed with implants. You simply brush and floss as normal.

Dental Implant Costs

Dental implants were pioneered in the 1960s. Thanks to technological advances including computer-aided design (CAD) and computer aided manufacturing (CAM), implants are now more affordable and therefore available to a wider range of individuals. By 2026, 23 percent of the American population is expected to have had a dental implant procedure.

Dental implant costs vary depending on many factors such as:

  • Type of implant.
  • Complexity of the procedure.
  • Material used for the prosthetic tooth or teeth.

Treatments involving extra cost are sometimes needed in order to get dental implants. These procedures include:

  • Tooth extraction.
  • Jawbone graft to ensure implant stability.
  • Sinus lift to add bone between the jaw and the sinuses either side of the nose.

Dental Implants at Your Plymouth Prosthodontist

As dentists with advanced skills in oral surgery and tooth replacement, prosthodontists are an obvious option to consider if you want to get the most from dental implants. Plymouth prosthodontist Metropolitan Prosthodontics is an officially recognized authority in implant dentistry and oral surgical procedures.

The finely tuned prosthodontic skill set of our dental implant specialists sets us apart from most other dentists and provides the highest standards of care for individuals looking for a permanent solution to tooth loss. We have more than 25 years’ experience in dental implant treatment to improve our patients’ quality of life.

During this time, our Plymouth prosthodontists have kept up to date with advances in dental implant technology and techniques such as CAD/CAM and implant-supported hybrid dentures like All-on-4. Call us at 763-559-7600 or contact us online to find out more about dental implants by your Plymouth prosthodontist.