What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are artificial teeth constructed from titanium and porcelain and are embedded into the jawbone where your missing tooth once was. With a reputation for durability and longevity, dental implants can not only restore your smile, but also improve your oral health as well, thanks to a process known as osseointegration.

Thank you for considering dental implants as your chosen tooth replacement treatment. Let us at Columbia Dentistry take you through what dental implants actually are and what has made them so successful for many patients like you throughout Columbia, SC and beyond. If dental implants sound like the treatment you’re seeking, then contact us at Columbia Dentistry to schedule a consultation with Dr. Riley.

But first, let’s explore what makes up a dental implant!

The Three Pieces of a Dental Implant
Dental implants are split into three pieces, for three different application steps.

Titanium Fixture
This fixture is typically shaped like a screw and is the first to be embedded into the jawbone. After being embedded, the implant fixture is left alone to heal which is when the beginnings of osseointegration take place. (You can read more about osseointegration below.)

Abutment
The abutment is the next step. This piece is the cap to the titanium fixture, and will later act as a mainstay for the porcelain crown to come. It also sticks up above the gums, and can be fitted with a temporary crown while it heals.

Porcelain Crown
This final piece is what will be visible to anyone who sees your smile. Dr. Riley will work with you to ensure that your implant crown is both comfortable and matches your natural smile’s shade. Our goal is for your dental implant crown to look as realistic as possible, so that even your close friends and family won’t be able to tell the difference.

What is Osseointegration and Why is it Important?
Osseointegration: this may be a term you’ve never heard of until now, but it’s vital to the dental implant process and ensures the success of your implant. Here’s how it works:

Step 1: The titanium implant is embedded into the jawbone, with the gums folded over it for healing.

Step 2: Titanium is biocompatible with human bone, and the bone is triggered to regenerate when it comes into contact with the titanium. This is what osseointegration is.

Step 3: As the dental implant undergoes osseointegration, it can also strengthen the surrounding teeth. This prevents them from loosening or shifting out of place.

Osseointegration is the reason that dental implants are so successful for many patients in Columbia, SC. It secures the dental implant in place, can help revitalize the depleted jawbone, and prevents surrounding teeth from shifting out of place and causing even more bone loss.

Choose Dental Implants Provider Dr. Annette Riley
As an experienced dental implants provider in Columbia, SC, Dr. Riley has garnered years of experience installing and maintaining dental implants for many patients with missing teeth in the city. We proudly serve many patients with one or more missing teeth and will work closely with you to ensure that your dental implant looks and feels as natural as possible.

Dental Implants in Columbia, SC
If you reside in Columbia, SC or the surrounding areas, look to Dr. Annette Riley to provide quality dental implants for your missing teeth. When you think of completing your smile once again, consider dental implants as your top chosen solution and we’ll help you get there.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Riley, and discover if you’re a candidate for dental implants.