Even the loss of a single tooth, be it from tooth decay or an accident, can put a damper on your everyday life. Not only can it affect your ability to eat, but it can also affect your self confidence. Fortunately, with a trip to the Dental Implant Center at Walnut Creek, you can receive a replacement tooth.
There are two ways in which this can be done. One is by way of a bridge. The other is a Dental Implant
What is A Bridge?
A bridge is a replacement tooth that is connected to the healthy surrounding teeth by cementing it to them. In order for the bridge to fit properly in the space where your tooth used to be, the surrounding teeth must be ground down so that it can fit over and be cemented to them. Thus the bridge covers the hole where your actual tooth used to be. So instead of a single replacement tooth, you are actually receiving three that are connected together. The bridge is meant to be a permanent replacement, but there is a chance that the cement can come loose and the bridge could fall out.
What About a Dental Implant?
For an actual permanent replacement, you may want to consider a dental implant
. This implant is a titanium rod, which is meant to act as a "root," that is set in a hole drilled into your jaw and fused to your bone. In order for this fusion to work, the bone must be in good condition. When you lose a tooth, the bone surrounding the area where the tooth used to be can deteriorate. It has been shown that a dental implant can actually slow, and even stop, this degradation. An abutment is placed on the implant, and it is upon this which the new tooth is screwed or cemented. A dental implant allows you to save your perfectly healthy surrounding teeth, as they do not need to be ground, or even touched at all. You only need to have a single replacement tooth placed in the space where your old tooth used to reside.
The Dental Implant Process
There are several steps in having your dental implant placed. During your initial consultation, Dr. Keith or Dr. Gibbs will give you a complete examination, which includes x-rays and a CT scan. These images will allow your prosthodontist to see not only the space where your tooth used to be but also the bone below it. When you go in for surgery, if there is any tooth remaining in the space, it will be removed. Then, a hole will be drilled into the jaw and the titanium implant placed. You will receive a temporary replacement while you heal. During this healing process, you will visit with your prosthodontist frequently, to make certain that you are healing properly. After you have healed, you will then receive your permanent replacement.
No one will ever be able to tell your replacement from your actual teeth.
Losing a tooth doesn't have to be a disaster. You can have it replaced. With a Dental Implant
, you can be assured that you have a strong, solid new tooth that will look and act like the rest of your teeth, leaving others to wonder if you had really lost a tooth in the first place! Call us at (925) 266-3550 to learn more.