Dental ImplantsAn Overview
The replacement of missing teeth is important for both your dental health and your overall physical well-being, restoring function and stability that will support your best quality of life. The development of implant dentistry has revolutionized tooth replacement, offering patients with one or more lost teeth the opportunity to “replace in kind” with stable, permanent results.
Dr. Sousa places all types of dental implants at East Hills Dental Associates and offers the experienced, comprehensive dental care necessary for a successful result that will withstand the test of time. Taking into consideration all aspects affecting the function and aesthetics of your smile, Dr. Sousa uses advanced digital technology and diagnostics to develop a personalized treatment plan for your unique needs and goals.
Guided Implant Placement
Dr. Sousa is able to provide predictable results using guided surgical implant software to analyze and plan the best placement of your implant(s). With this precise information, he can start planning the ideal location for your implants, reach the best outcome and show you how your new teeth will look – even before treatment!
SimPlant® implant treatment planning software gives Dr. Sousa three-dimensional information on the anatomy of your mouth:
- The width and density of your jawbone
- The exact location of neighboring tooth roots
- The location of the nerves
A personalized SurgiGuide® dental drill guide is our link between implant planning and your actual treatment. It makes sure that Dr. Sousa performs the procedure safely and according to the plan. A SurgiGuide® dental drill guide fits in your mouth with unparalleled precision during implant treatment and is your guarantee for maximum comfort.
Dental Implants What to Expect
Dr. Sousa will meet with you to evaluate your dental health, discuss your goals and create a personalized treatment plan to replace your missing teeth. All phases of your implant procedure can be performed in our Roslyn Heights office using a local anesthetic for comfort. For patients who have dental anxiety or prefer to be completely relaxed, we offer sedation options which we can discuss during your consultation.
The dental implant process will require several visits over a period of several months due to the healing time needed after the surgical implantation of the posts. A dental implant consists of three main parts:
- Implant post: a tiny, titanium post that is placed into stable bone in the jaw.
- Abutment: a collar-like piece that once attached to the post will connect it to the final restoration for stability.
- Restoration: your new tooth, or teeth, will be a custom dental crown, bridge or denture.
Am I A Candidate for Dental Implants?
The key factors in determining whether or not you are a candidate for dental implants are first, the quality and amount of healthy jaw bone available to place the implant into. This information is determined by analyzing x-rays, study models or CT-Scans.
The next factor is whether there are any reasons that you should not undergo minor dental surgical procedures, including any systemic problems or medications prescribed that would exclude you as a candidate. Dr. Sousa will discuss your medical history during your consultation to ensure that dental implants are the best solution for you. The many recent advances in both materials and techniques have made implants available to a wider range of patients. Factors to consider:
- Age does not play a factor in your ability to have dental implants so long as your general health is good and you don’t have any of the other risk factors mentioned.
- Smoking can reduce the success of implant integration. Smoking impairs healing and has other negative effects that are well known. We suggest that you consider quitting if you would like to use implants to restore your smile.
- Certain medications can exclude you as a candidate. These include drugs that suppress your immune system such as long-term use of steroid medications and some medications used to treat HIV.
Recently there has been a debate on risks of dental surgery on patients who have been taking osteoporosis medications called bisphosphonates such as Fosamax. These medications increase the risk of jaw infections in patients who have received them intravenously as chemotherapy to treat some forms of cancer. It has not been determined if they pose any significantly increased risk in patients who have taken them orally. If you take bisphosphonates, we may need to modify your medications for a period prior to placing implants which would be done in coordination with your physician.