Dental Implants In Baton Rouge, LA
We specialize in treating a wide variety of dental implant complications due to bone loss, poor aesthetic results, or peri-implantitis.
What are dental implants?
Unlike dental bridges and dentures, dental implants are long-lasting tooth replacements that can last decades.
Mimicking the look and composition of natural teeth, dental implants consist of a root and a crown, just like your real teeth. The root of the dental implant is a durable screw the periodontist surgically places directly into your jawbone. The crown is made from durable porcelain or zirconia.
In a short time, your body accepts the embedded screw as its own and starts to grow new bone around the titanium. It forms the perfect foundation for the new, custom-made dental crown that closely resembles the look, stability, and feel of a natural tooth.
Two Types of Dental Implants
There are two main types of dental implants – Endosteal implants and Subperiosteal implants.
Endosteal dental implants are the most common type of dental implant made from titanium. Shaped like small screws, endosteal implants screw into the jawbone and protrude through the gum to provide a foundation for the crown.
For patients that do not have enough healthy jawbone to support an endosteal implant, the periodontist uses a subperiosteal implant instead. The periodontist places the subperiosteal dental implants on or above the jawbone rather than inside it.
Another option for patients without sufficient jawbone is to use synthetic material or take a bone graft from another area of the body. This bone, or synthetic bone material, can provide additional support.
A dental implant consists of an implant that acts as a root and a crown that appears identaical to your other natural tooth. An implant can last a lifetime. The crown can last up to 25+ years if properly cared for.
What Happens During the Dental Implant Procedure?
If Dr. Markle or Dr. Herman determined that you need dental implants during your initial consultation the procedure may go something like this.
- The doctors take dental x-rays and 3-D scans of your mouth and jaw to measure the exact location of the implant site.
- On the day of your first procedure, before any work begins, we give you a local anesthetic to numb your mouth and jaw so you do not feel any discomfort. Intravenous sedation, or “twilight sedation,” is also an option.
- Once you are comfortable, if using an endosteal implant, one of our dentists surgically places the screw into your jawbone. Once embedded, they will sit just above your gumline and will look like a small metal bead.
- To allow your implants to bond with your jawbone, most patients need to wait between four and six months before securing the abutment and crown. During this time, your dentist will cover your implants with a healing cap.
- While your implants are bonding, Dr. Markle or Dr. Herman will craft your new teeth. These crowns are matched to your remaining teeth’ shapes and color to ensure the most natural result.
- Once Dr. Markle or Dr. Herman is satisfied that your implant has successfully bonded with your jawbone, they place a connector called an abutment. The abutment connects onto the visible portion of the implant with your custom-made dental crown on top.
What Is Recovery Like?
Most patients who undergo a dental implant procedure find that they do not need time off work to recover and can get back to their normal daily routine very quickly. Expect some bruising, swelling, and tenderness. However, this is easily managed with pain medication and subsides on its own in a short time.
To keep the implant site clean, we recommend rinsing with saline solution several times a day. We also suggest avoiding mouthwash or anything containing hydrogen peroxide as these can irritate your healing gums.
To give your implants the best chance of healing, your dentist may recommend a soft or liquid diet for the initial few weeks. Once the implants have bonded with your jawbone and your crowns have been fitted, you can begin eating and drinking as normal.
How Long Do Dental Implants Last?
Because they are made from extremely durable materials, if taken care of properly, your dental implants can last 25 years or longer. To ensure the longevity of your implants, you should avoid bad dental habits like chewing ice. You should try to keep them free from staining by reducing your consumption of alcohol and tobacco. In the event that your crowns do become stained, they can be replaced.
The Benefits of Dental Implants
- They’re the closest thing to real teeth:
Because they are implanted either into or onto your jawbone, dental implants function and look like real teeth! You won’t be able to tell the difference.
- They are durable:
Forged from durable materials like titanium, dental implants can stay in place for decades. If a crown becomes damaged or stained, it can easily be taken out and replaced when necessary.
- They can help to prevent bone loss:
By sitting in or on the bone, dental implants can help prevent further bone loss and encourage jaw bone regeneration.
- They can restore the shape of your face:
Because dental implants prevent bone loss, they can help to restore the natural shape of your face and keep your natural smile.
Are Dental Implants Suitable for Everyone?
Like most procedures, dental implants sadly aren’t suitable for everyone. The main reason why a person may be unable to get a dental implant is that they have a condition or are on a medication that may prevent osseointegration – the process where the implant fuses with the jaw bone.
Autoimmune diseases like diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis and some medications prescribed for depression and heartburn can reduce or stop bone growth and prevent osseointegration. If the implant does not fuse with the jawbone, then it has failed and will need to be removed. If for whatever reason, you are unable to proceed with a dental implant procedure, then there are a number of other dental procedures that Dr. Markle or Dr. Herman can discuss with you, including dental bridges and dentures.