When it comes to replacing missing teeth, dental implants are widely considered to be the best, most permanent, and healthiest option for patients who are missing one or just a few teeth. What many people don’t know is that dental implants are extremely versatile tools that can be used for more than just single-tooth replacements. At Billings Oral Surgery & Dental Implant Center, our expert oral surgery team places implants for single tooth replacements, to support full-arch replacements, and more. Dental implants can be used to treat a wide variety of conditions, and below we’ve provided a list of some different procedures that utilize dental implant technology.
Replacing single teeth
Dental implants are commonly used to replace a single missing tooth. An implant is a great option for replacing a single tooth because the implant screw will integrate with your natural bone and stimulate the jaw, which combats bone loss and other complications.
Replacing multiple teeth in a row
Dental implants can sometimes be used to support bridges, which can replace multiple teeth in the same area. The dental implants will firmly hold the bridge in place while stimulating the jaw bone. This is preferable to traditional tooth-supported bridges, which put stress on your surrounding, healthy teeth for support. Implant-supported bridges do not damage neighboring teeth, and they promote good overall oral health.
Replacing a full arch of teeth
Usually, it is not advisable to replace a full arch of teeth with multiple single dental implants, due to the high cost and healing time of multiple procedures. Luckily, advances in dental implant technology have made it possible to replace an entire row of teeth using only a few dental implants to support a permanent denture. A full arch replacement only requires one procedure to place the implants (where you will receive a temporary set of teeth) and one more procedure to place your custom, permanent teeth once the dental implant sites have healed fully. This drastically reduces the healing time compared to using individual dental implants to restore an entire arch of teeth.
Anchoring for orthodontic work
Dental implants are extremely stable, which makes them perfect as temporary anchorage devices for orthodontic work. Your oral surgeon will place the dental implant; then your orthodontist will attach braces or other devices to the implant and surrounding teeth. The stable dental implant acts as an anchor, so other teeth can move into their proper positions more quickly and easily.
These are just a few of the treatments possible with dental implants, and oral surgeons are constantly finding new and innovative ways to utilize and improve dental implant technology. Even if you have been told in the past that dental implants were not a viable option, a wide variety of bone grafting treatments is available to prepare your jaw and surrounding structures for implant placement. If you need a tooth or multiple teeth replaced, we encourage you to contact our office for more information. With many different treatment options, we are confident that we can find a treatment plan that fits your needs.