Dental implants can seem almost too good to be true. You get a permanent replacement for your missing teeth that looks, feels, and functions just like your natural tooth? You think there must be some kind of catch, but it turns out there isn’t. Modern implants are so great because of all the technological innovations that have happened in recent years. Let’s look at 4 particular ways that technology can help with your dental implants in Towson.
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are posts made of metal, usually titanium, that are surgically inserted directly into the jaw to replace missing teeth. Over a period of a few months, the post will gradually fuse to the jawbone in a process called osseointegration. Then, your implant will feel like a part of you, because it is! Implants are designed to be permanent. After you have healed from the surgery, your dentist in Towson will place a restoration over it, such as a crown or bridge, to make it look and feel as though you never lost any teeth.
Now let’s look at 4 ways technology can help with the placement of implants.
1. CT/CBCT Scanning
Anyone who performs oral or facial surgery needs to understand how structures beneath the teeth and gums will interact with each other. This is where these types of scanning come in. CT (computed tomography) scanning takes several digital x-rays and combines them into one 3-D image. Cone beam CT (CBCT) scanners are newer, and can produce the same 3-D image faster using a smaller piece of equipment. Both of these machines allow doctors to see the exact position of nerves as well as the quality of the jawbone to determine if it’s ideal for a patient to go through with implant surgery.
2. Digital Imaging and Virtual Treatment Planning
Modern computer imaging allows dentists to do more than look at pictures of your mouth from all angles. These digital models can also be edited to estimate what your mouth will look like after treatment. Your dentist can design a customized treatment plan to get your mouth to look like it does in the image.
3. Customized Surgical Guides
A surgical guide is a device custom-made to fit your unique anatomy, mainly in the fit of your gums and the type of implant you will receive. It helps dentist put the implants in the exact spot in your jaw where they need to be. Proper positioning of your implant helps ensure that it lasts as long as it possibly can, which can be for your entire life!
4. Digital Impressions
Your dentist can use a wand-like device to scan the exact shape, size, and position of your teeth and gums to design the perfect implant for you. It can take the data it collects and use it to generate a picture of what it thinks your mouth will look like after treatment. Additionally, it can figure out the color of the restoration that goes on top of the implant to match the rest of your teeth.
Dental implants are a great way to replace missing teeth, thanks to all the technological advancements made in the industry recently. If you would like to rebuild your smile with implants, contact your dentist today.
About the Author
Dr. Devon Conklin earned her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from the University of Maryland Baltimore in 2009. She then completed a one-year residency where she strengthened her skills in implant surgery. She has also attended the Pankey Institute to learn more about restorative dentistry so she can provide the best possible care to her patients in the Towson, MD area. To learn more about how Dr. Conklin can help restore your smile, click here or call (410)-583-7010.