Dental implants are precisely milled titanium screws of varying diameter and length that are surgically implanted into the jaw. Implants provide the “foundation” for the prosthetic crown of the replacement tooth.
Once an implant is surgically implanted, a specified amount of time is allowed for the bone to heal and integrate into the jaw bone. This period is called osseointegration.
After osseointegration has occurred, a support post (abutment) is then placed on the implant and a new replacement tooth (crown) is placed on top of the abutment. In many cases a temporary replacement tooth can be attached to the implant immediately after it is placed. If all of your teeth are missing, a variety of treatment options are available to support the replacement teeth.
What is titanium and where does it come from?
Titanium is a chemical element that is found embedded in minerals in the Earth’s crust and is even found in meteorites!
There are four types of commercially pure titanium (cp Ti). Type II is most commonly used in dental implants. Occasionally an alloy of Aluminum and Vanadium is used in dental implants to impart greater strength (Ti 6Al 4V).
Dental implant placement is a team effort between an oral and maxillofacial surgeon and a restorative dentist. Dr. Jundt performs the actual implant surgery, initial tooth extractions, and bone grafting if necessary. The restorative dentist (your dentist) fits and makes the permanent tooth. Your dentist will also make any temporary prosthesis needed during the implant process.