It may seem that everywhere you go lately, you hear about dental implants. Friends and family likely had successful dental implant surgery. You may have even heard them mentioned the last time you had your dental procedure with Dr. Shawn Hofkes. You, however, may want a general overview of the procedure, and find out if it is a good fit for you. The questions and answers below should be helpful.
Q: What Is A Dental Implant?
A: Dental implants are prosthetic replacements for missing teeth. Specifically, there are three parts of an implant. The first part is the device implanted directly into the jawbone called the “implant post.” Second, the “abutment” is what connects the implant post to the artificial teeth. The third component is the crown or dental bridge, which is what you actually see above the gum line.
Q: How Do Dental Implants Work?
A: There is a process called “osseointegration”, which occurs with dental implants. Osseointegration means “combine with the bone.” This unique combination is unusual because the jawbone actually accepts the implant as a “natural” element due to the properties of the titanium used. Titanium is the same material used to make hip replacements and knee replacements. Therefore, the osseointegration allows the gums to heal and the jawbone to “accept” the implant.
Q: Do Dental Implants Look Natural?
A: Dental implants look just like your natural teeth. Because every implant is tailor-made for you, the natural color of your tooth dentin (the colored part of your tooth) can be very closely matched. The bottom line is: Dental implants will look and feel just like your natural teeth.
Q: Are Dental Implants Safe And Successful?
A: Although every dental and medical procedure has some degree of risk, dental implant surgeries have stood the test of time for over forty years. The success rate is extremely high (over 90%) for patients who are not high risk.
Q. How Do I Know If I am A Good Candidate For Dental Implants?
A: If you have uncontrolled diabetes, you may not be a good candidate. If you have leukemia, you may not be a strong candidate. Also, heavy smoking reduces the success potential for dental implants. The best way to evaluate your chances for a successful implant placement procedure is to contact Dr. Hofkes for a consultation.
About Dr. Shawn Hofkes in Cerritos:
To schedule an appointment and learn more about dental implants with Shawn Hofkes, DDS, contact him today at 562-584-4082. We proudly serve patients of all ages from Cerritos, Lakewood, Long Beach, Buena Park, and all surrounding communities.