Posts for tag: dental implants
Even with modern prevention and treatment advances, losing teeth in later life is still a sad but common part of human experience. Just as generations have before, many today rely on dentures to regain their lost dental function and smile.
But although effective, dentures have their weaknesses. The most serious: they can't prevent jawbone deterioration, a common problem associated with tooth loss.
Bone health depends on chewing forces applied to the teeth to stimulate replacement growth for older bone cells. When teeth are gone, so is this stimulation. Dentures can't replicate the stimulus and may even accelerate bone loss because they can irritate the bone under the gums as they rest upon them for support.
But there's a recent advance in denture technology that may help slow or even stop potential bone loss. The advance incorporates implants with dentures to create two hybrid alternatives that may be more secure and healthier for the supporting bone.
The first is known as an overdenture, a removable appliance similar to a traditional denture. But instead of deriving its support from the gums alone, the overdenture attaches to three to four implants (or only two, if on the lower jaw) that have been permanently set into the jawbone. This not only increases stability, but the implants made of bone-friendly titanium attract and foster increased bone growth around them. This can help slow or even stop the cycle of bone loss with missing teeth.
The second type is a fixed denture. In this version, four to six implants are implanted around the jaw arch. The denture is then secured in place to these implants with screws. It's a little more secure than the overdenture, but it's also more expensive and requires good quality bone at the implant sites.
If you've already experienced significant bone loss you may first need bone grafting to build up the implant sites for these options, or choose traditional dentures instead. But if you're a good candidate for an implant-supported denture, you may find it provides better support and less risk of continuing bone loss than traditional dentures.
If you would like more information on implant-supported dental restorations, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Overdentures & Fixed Dentures.”
We've been using bridges to replace missing teeth for decades. Now, recently-developed implant-supported bridges are even more dependable, promising greater durability and less interference with remaining natural teeth.
But just like other restorations, you'll need to keep implant bridges clean to ensure their longevity. Although both the bridge and implants are impervious to disease, the supporting gums and bone aren't. If they become infected, they can break down and your restoration will fail.
Cleaning an implant-supported bridge includes flossing around each of the implants to remove dental plaque, a thin film of food particles and bacteria most responsible for dental disease. To perform this task, you'll have to pass the floss between the bridge and gums to access the sides of each implant.
To help make it easier, you can use a tool like a floss threader, a thin, shaft-like device with a loop on one end and a needle-like point on the other. You'll first thread about 18" of floss through the end and then pass the threader between the bridge and gums with the sharp end toward the tongue.
With the threader completely through, you'll then wrap the floss around your fingers as with regular flossing and move the floss up and down each side of the implants you can access. You'll then pull the floss out, reload the threader and move to the next section, repeating this process until you've flossed each side of each implant.
You can also use pre-cut floss with a stiffened end to thread between the bridge and gums or an interproximal brush with a thin bristled head that can reach underneath the bridge. And you might consider using an oral irrigator, a pump device that sprays a stream of pressurized water to remove and flush away plaque around implants.
To round out your hygiene efforts, be sure you visit your dentist at least twice a year for dental cleanings. Your dentist can also advise you and give you training on keeping your implants clear of disease-causing plaque. Cleaning around your implants will help ensure your restoration will last.
If you would like more information on caring for your dental restoration, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Oral Hygiene for Fixed Bridgework.”
Find out if your smile could benefit from oral surgery.
From impacted wisdom teeth to severe jaw joint issues, there are several reasons why someone may need to turn to oral surgery to correct a dental problem. Luckily, Dr. Dave Verma and Dr. Arpana Verma in Frederick, MD, have dealt with a variety of cases and can expertly diagnose whether or not you may require oral surgery. Here are the top reasons why someone might need surgery and how to tell if it’s time to schedule a consultation with us!
This mostly affects wisdom teeth, which are the third set of molars to develop, and usually erupt in your late teens or early twenties. At our Frederick office, we will be able to see them in x-rays to determine if they are growing in straight or if they might come in crooked.
In most cases, wisdom teeth will be impacted, which means that they don’t fully emerge through the gums. They can also grow in crooked and cause damage to neighboring teeth, which is why wisdom teeth are often removed. Even if they aren’t causing you issues, they could cause problems down the road, which is why they should be extracted as soon as possible.
Issues with the Jaw Joint
A lot of people deal with a condition known as temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, which is caused by dysfunction within the jaw joints. Those with TMJ disorder may experience jaw pain and stiffness, and may even hear a popping or clicking sound when they open or close their jaws. While most of the time symptoms of a TMJ disorder can be treated with simple at-home care, if the symptoms that you are experiencing are severe and don’t respond to treatment, oral surgery may be then recommended to correct joint dysfunction.
If you are a healthy adult who is missing at least one tooth, you may be considering getting dental implants, a metal restoration that functions like tooth roots. In order to place the dental implant into the jawbone, surgery will have to be performed, though this procedure is minimal and pain-free. Implants look and feel completely natural, and before you know it, you will forget that they are even there!
If you are dealing with any of these issues above, or if you are noticing changes in your smile that give you pause, then it’s important to let the dentists at Frederick Dental Group provide your smile with the care it deserves. Call our Frederick, MD, dental office at (301) 624-1001 to schedule an appointment today!
From wisdom tooth removal to root canal therapy, oral surgery helps you protect your oral health and restore your smile. From their Frederick, MD, office, dentists Dr. Dave Verma and Dr. Arpana Verma of Frederick Dental Group use the latest oral surgery techniques to correct and repair problems that affect the teeth and jaw.
Wisdom tooth extraction
Wisdom tooth extraction is one of the most common types of oral surgery in the U.S. Although a third set of molars could be useful, many people just don't have room in their mouths for the normal eruption of wisdom teeth. Despite the lack of space, the teeth still try to erupt, causing pain, infections, and even difficulty in chewing or even possible nerve damage in some cases. Oral surgery may be recommended if your wisdom teeth are completely covered by bone and gum tissue (fully impacted) or partially covered (partially impacted), or have an infection or cysts.
Oral surgery is the first step in the dental implant process. After comfortably numbing your mouth, the jaw bone is prepared to accept the implant and the dentist places the titanium implants. These implants, will serve as synthetic roots, and begin to bond to the surrounding bone. Attaching dental crowns to the implants then creates brand new teeth that feel just like those that you have lost.
Jawbone depth is an important consideration when placing dental implants in your mouth. Luckily, depth issues don't have to prevent you from receiving implants. Bone grafts can deepen and strengthen the bone, making dental implants a possibility. During this type of oral surgery, your dentist adds bone Graft Materials putty, granules, or powder to your jawbone. In just a few months, new bone will form around the grafts, making it possible to proceed with your implant. Bone Grafts are generally recommended at the time of dental extractions to build and maintain the bone for future implant placement and retard the natural atrophy that occurs after a tooth is extracted.
Safeguard your oral health with oral surgery. Whether you need oral surgery or other dental services, your Frederick, MD, dentists at Frederick Dental Group Dr. Dave Verma and Dr. Arpana Verma can help. Call them at (301) 624-1001 to schedule an appointment.
There are several reasons why dental implants are so popular. Perhaps the most important, though, is their longevity: if maintained properly implants can last for decades. However, they’re not indestructible—certain mouth conditions could put them at risk for early failure. But if you address emerging problems early, you may be able to prevent that unfortunate outcome.
Your implants may be in danger, for example, if you have a teeth grinding or clenching habit. This occurs when a person involuntarily and repeatedly bites down on their teeth when not chewing or speaking. Usually triggered in adults by high stress, teeth grinding can subject both natural teeth and implants to damaging levels of force. Over time this can cause bone loss around an implant and weaken their support. It could also cause a direct break in an implant.
But there are ways to stop or at least reduce the effects of teeth grinding. One effective way is a custom-made bite guard you wear while you sleep. Made of hard plastic, the guard prevents the teeth from making solid contact with each other, reducing the amount of force generated.
A more prominent problem is periodontal (gum) disease, a bacterial infection caused by built-up dental plaque on tooth surfaces. This can trigger inflammation, a normal defensive response that when it persists for an extended period of time can damage tissues and supporting bone. It can also cause a specific form of gum disease related to implants called peri-implantitis, in which the tissues that support an implant become infected and weaken, leading eventually to possible implant failure.
If you have implants, then, you should brush and floss daily to prevent gum disease, as well as see your dentist at least every six months for cleanings and checkups. And if you notice anything like reddened, swollen or bleeding gums, see your dentist immediately. The sooner you undergo treatment, the better the outcome for your implants as well as your overall health.
Dental implants can give you years of great service and can prove to be well worth the cost. But you’ll have to stay on your guard against gum disease and other mouth conditions that could endanger them down the road.
If you would like more information on dental implants, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Dental Implants: A Tooth-Replacement Method that Rarely Fails.”