One of the biggest advances in dentistry in the past 40 years is the development and use of dental implants.

Implants are an effective and increasingly popular way to replace one or more missing teeth. U.S. dentists place more than 5.5 million implants annually.

A dental implant is a screw or cylinder-type device made of a strong, lightweight material, usually titanium, that is surgically implanted into the jaw. By using a bone coating on the titanium–which biochemically joins to bone–to replace the root, you get a bond that more accurately replicates the one found in nature. This provides a sturdy anchor for artificial replacement teeth, or crowns. Implants can be used for single teeth, bridges and dentures.

Implants are typically done in three steps:

First, a local Plymouth dentist or oral surgeon will surgically place the implant into your jaw bone.

Second, the implant and jaw bone are allowed to bond together over about a three-month period. During this healing process, called osseointegration, the bone actually grows around the implant and firmly holds it in place.

Third, when the area for treatment is ready, a small metal cylinder called an abutment is screwed on top of the implant. A permanent crown is created based on size, shape, color and fit, and put in place on the abutment. The crown is designed to blend in with your other teeth and function like any other natural tooth.

Dr. Gary Feucht, your local Plymouth dentist, at Plymouth Dentistry is happy to answer your questions about dental implants or any other of our services. Either give us a call or ask Dr. Feucht at your next appointment if you’d like to know more about this option for tooth replacement.