The reason dental implants are capable of providing the results that they do is because of a process called osseointegration. This process works to see the implant fixture, which is one of the three main pieces of a dental implant, accepted by your jaw structure as being no different from any natural tooth. Should this process fail, it is likely that the implant fixture would fail or even fall out.
In order for osseointegration to succeed, it is important that your jawbone is strong enough to support implants. This standard can be hard to meet as the jawbone actually begins to deteriorate after you lose a tooth. Fortunately, Elgin dentist Dr. Keith Bram can use bone regeneration treatments like bone grafting and sinus augmentation to reverse jawbone deterioration for our patients.
What many of our prospective patients don’t know is that our jawbone is much like a muscle in the way that it requires constant exercise in order to retain its shape and structure. This exercise usually comes from vibrations that result from the impact of food on our teeth and from speaking. These vibrations travel down the roots of our teeth and into the jawbone. However, when you lose a tooth, the portions of the jawbone that that tooth was connected to are no longer getting the exercise they need to stay healthy and will begin to deteriorate as a result.
Jawbone deterioration can actually have a drastic effect on your facial appearance as the jawbone is partly responsible for the shape and structure of your face. When you lose this support, it is only natural that your appearance would suffer as well. For instance, it is not uncommon for patients to develop hollow cheeks, resulting in a sunken appearance. It is also common for the skin directly around your mouth to prematurely wrinkle. Because of these effects, people suffering from jawbone deterioration tend to be described as appearing aged or unhealthy.
If your jawbone has deteriorated to the point where it can no longer support dental implants, you may need a bone regeneration treatment before you can move forward with the implant procedure. During this treatment, new bone material is placed in the weakened area. Over time, the jaw heals over this new bone structure, strengthening the jaw. Bone generation with bone grafting is a common procedure recommended for patients who have been missing teeth for a significant period of time as well as those moving from dentures to dental implants. For the best results, bone grafting is often completed before the implant fixture is placed, which can extend your overall implant treatment process. To learn if you need this supplemental procedure, schedule your dental implant exam with Dr. Keith Bram today.
Much like the jawbone, it is also possible for your gums to deteriorate in a process referred to as gum recession. Not only does this compromise the look of your smile, but gum recession leaves tooth roots exposed and vulnerable to infection and damage. Fortunately, we have a procedure that can reverse this damage, which is called soft tissue augmentation. This procedure takes new gum tissue and grafts it to the areas of your mouth that need it. As the area heals, this new tissue is accepted and integrated into your gum structure, replacing what has been lost.
Dr. Bram and his team want to make sure our patients have the highest chances of success possible when it comes to dental implant placement. It is for this reason that we require a consultation with each prospective patient in order to predetermine whether or not they will need bone regeneration or soft tissue augmentation before they will be able to move forward with their dental implant treatment. To learn if your smile needs extra care before recieving dental implants, contact Dr. Bram today and schedule a no-obligation consultation with our Elgin, IL dentist today.