Dental Implants 101

Dental Implant

While many people consider getting dental implants for cosmetic reasons, (which, by the way, is a very valid reason) dental implants can also play an important role in the health of the remaining surrounding teeth. When a tooth is lost, whether it is knocked out accidentally, or lost because of medical issues such as diabetes, the jaw bone that was underneath the lost tooth begins to slowly deteriorate. Left unchecked, this deterioration may cause the remaining teeth to shift and move as they try to fill in the space left empty by the lost tooth. This can have a detrimental affect on your overall oral health and your ability to chew. One way to keep the jawbone healthy and the remaining teeth where they belong is through dental implants.

The Process

The process of obtaining dental implants is not something that can be done in one or two short office visits. One of the first major steps in receiving a dental implant involves your dentist or oral surgeon inserting a small titanium rod into the empty socket. Titanium is used because of its strength and because of the body’s ability to fuse itself to the metal. Over the course of the next few months, as your jaw heals, it will grow around this rod, which will anchor your new implant to your jaw.


After healing is complete, your dentist will take a series of molds with which he can create a replacement tooth that will match the look of your existing teeth. Once finished, he will then attach this new tooth to the titanium rod by way of a smaller connective rod which is also made of titanium.

Occasionally, when a patient does not possess adequate bone for a dental implant, a bone graft may first be done. Once the bone graft is completed, three to six months must pass before the implants are actually implanted to allow the bones to totally fuse and the jaw to heal. From start to finish, the process is lengthy, however the results are well worth the effort.

A dental implant is intended to be permanent. It will look and feel like your original tooth, and will not slip or click like partials, dentures, and bridges often do. Even better, the implant does not require use of a messy adhesive, and does not need to be removed for cleaning.

To learn more about dental implants, or to find out if a dental implant is the right option for your specific situation, contact us at Hinsdale Dental today!

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