Dental Implant Services in Westminster, South Carolina

Types of dental implant procedures

Missing even one tooth can have a negative impact on your daily life.  A missing tooth can result in an unsightly gap in our smile, decrease your confidence and make it difficult to chew food.  Furthermore, over time missing teeth will result in bone loss in your jaw, changing the shape of your face.  Dental implants can restore your quality of life by preserving your jaw bone, improve your chewing function and enhancing or restoring your smile.   

 

Today, dental implants are a commonly used procedure to replace a single missing tooth, multiple missing teeth, or to aid in the rehabilitation of an entire arch.  There are several dental procedures to replace missing teeth, however, dental implants are the most effective procedure to restore your smile, your chewing functions, your confidence, and most importantly, stop the loss of jaw bone surrounding your teeth.  A dental implant looks and feels almost as natural as your own teeth and can be the most cost effective procedure when restoring your mouth.  According to the American Dental Association (ADA), more than 5.5 million dental implants are placed annually in individuals by dentists in the United States.

 

What are dental implants? 

 

Dental implants are becoming the new standard in tooth replacement because they function and feel like natural teeth. Dental implants are an effective long-term solution for people who suffer from missing teeth, broken and failing teeth or chronic dental problems.  Unlike dentures, dental implants act as natural tooth roots that integrate into the jawbone, providing a long-term fixed base for a permanent and stable tooth replacement.

Dental implants are comfortable and secure because Dr. David Beemer, at SC Cosmetic & Implant Dentistry, in Westminster, South Carolina, uses titanium implants that, over time, fuse into the jaw bone, forming a durable and strong anchor for your new teeth while keeping the bone from deteriorating.  Unlike dentures, there is no slippage or movement of replacement teeth secured to dental implants.  You do not have to worry about smiling or eating and dental implants do not require regular adjustments or repairs.  Furthermore, the tooth replacement is made porcelain or zirconia.  This means you get a natural-looking tooth, without the same issues of decay, traditional gum disease and root canal therapy you get with your natural teeth. When properly cared for, dental implants can last a lifetime.

Dental implants consist of three components: the dental implant, a titanium screw that functions as the root of the tooth – the portion of the tooth that is below the gumline, a dental abutment, or mechanism to allow attachment between the dental implant and the crown, and a dental crown, or replacement tooth.  

Figure 1: Parts of the dental implant

Benefits of dental implants? 

Replacing damaged or missing teeth with dental implants can transform your oral health and help you reclaim what you have been missing.  The benefits are beyond a new smile.​  Unlike tooth replacement options like dentures or bridges, dental implants are made of long-lasting, stable materials like titanium.  Dental implants do not require repetitive maintenance or replacement.  Dental implant treatment has a 95% or higher success rate, making them the preferred tooth replacement solution for many patients.

Look as Young as You Feel

Bone loss in the jaw begins as soon as teeth are lost. Over time, this results in an older appearance, with a collapsed bite and a sunken-in face.  Because dental implants naturally become part of your mouth, they not only keep your jawbone strong and healthy, but also help you maintain the natural shape of your face, helping you look more like you.

Chew, Talk, and Smile with Comfort

Dental implants feel and function like real teeth.  You will be able to smile, talk, eat and brush your teeth with comfort and confidence.  There is no embarrassment from readjusting or slipping and you never have to apply adhesive or take them out at night.  ​

Improve Your Overall Health

Dental implants improve more than just your oral health.  There is a large body of research showing that dental health is correlated to heart health.  The removal of infected teeth and the placement of dental implants can help with gum disease and possibly reduce your risk of heart complications, such as heart attacks.  When you have dental implants, your chewing abilities are restored and you will digest your food better as well as eat healthier foods, like raw fruits and vegetables, allowing you to enjoy a healthier, well-balanced diet.  

 

Chronic dental issues, over time impact more than just oral health - like the simple act of laughing without reservation, kissing your spouse, smiling, or interacting with people. Many patients find that one of the most valuable benefits of dental implants is regaining the confidence to have the quality of life they want. 

Although the entire treatment process takes more than one day, you will experience a noticeable transformation as you proceed.  Removal of infected teeth will help your body begin to heal.  Placement of bone grafts and implant will begin to stabilize your jaw, and when you receive your crown or fixed arch, your smile will be restored and your quality of life will significantly improve.  

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What types of dental implant procedures are available?

 

Dental implants are very versatile.  They can be used to address a wide range of tooth replacement needs, from a complete row of upper and lower teeth, multiple teeth, or a single tooth.  Dr. David Beemer will examine your condition and guide you through the process, and together, you can decide the best dental implant options.  

Missing a single tooth

If you are missing a single tooth, the options to restore your smile are: 

  • A partial removable denture to fill in the gap

  • A dental bridge

  • A dental implant

 

A removable partial denture is made of acrylic and is held in place by small clasps and will come in and out of the mouth. Due to the movement of the partial denture and the fact that it can be taken out of the mouth, many people find this option unacceptable.  

Figure 2: A removable partial denture

 

A dental bridge restores the missing tooth by “bridging” a replacement tooth between two opposing teeth.  To bridge teeth, the two opposing are prepared for dental crowns and a three unit restoration, called a dental bridge.  The bridge is cemented over the prepared teeth to form a “bridge”, replacing the missing tooth.  Many patients do not prefer this method of replacement because the two teeth prepared have to have tooth structure removed to accommodate the bridge, the bridge is one unit and each tooth cannot be flossed, and the price for a bridge is nearly the same price as a dental implant system. 

Figure 3: A dental bridge to fill a gap from a missing tooth

Single Dental Implant

A dental implant restores the missing tooth.  Once completed, the dental implant looks and feels just like a natural tooth. Once placed, a dental implant is the ideal treatment for a missing tooth.  A dental implant and the dental crown attached to the implant does not decay like a natural tooth, meaning your dental crown will not get a cavity and require a filling, and the bone around the dental implant will not deteriorate as it would if the missing tooth root was not replaced. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Figure 4: A dental implant to replace the missing tooth and tooth root.

 

Missing multiple teeth

If you are missing multiple teeth, the options to restore your smile are: 

  • A partial removable denture to fill in the gaps without any implant retention or stabilization

  • A dental bridge or several bridges cemented over prepared teeth

  • Dental implants individually placed to replace teeth, spaced appropriately to create anchors for dental implant bridges.

As with a removable partial for a single tooth, there are partial dentures for multiple teeth.  These are made to fill in the missing teeth in any area within the arch.  With multiple missing teeth, bridges are still an option, however the number of prepared teeth may increase.  

 

Dental Implant Bridge

In many instances, dental implants can stand in place of two missing teeth, reducing the span of a dental bridge, eliminating the need to remove tooth structure of your other teeth, and replace missing roots of teeth, subsequently reducing bone loss. 

 

 

 

 

 

Figure 5: Dental implant replacing 3 missing teeth

Full Mouth Rehabilitation

When all of the teeth in your mouth or within a single arch are damaged beyond repair, full mouth or arch rehabilitation is the ideal option to restore function and esthetics in your mouth. Full arch or full mouth rehabilitation has three options: 

 

  • A complete removable denture

  • Removable implant stabilized over-denture 

  • Fixed implant retained prosthetics for each arch, known as the All-on-4 procedure

 

Removable dentures are fabricated to fit over the gums and can be adhered to the tissue with temporary adhesive to help hold the dentures in place during the day.  Dentures are removed from the mouth every night.  Many patients object to dentures due to their movement when speaking and eating, the potential for sore spots on the gums, large amounts of plastic across the top of the mouth and into the gumline, under the lip, as well as the long term loss of jawbone.

Figure 6: Upper and lower dentures to replace a full arch of missing teeth.  No implants are involved

 

Implant Stabilized "snap-on" Dentures

Implant stabilized dentures are also removable dentures, however they are stabilized with two to four implants. The denture is removed each night, however the implants remain in the mouth indefinitely.  Most patients prefer an over denture because the implant stabilized denture is more secure when chewing and talking, there is no need for any adhesion gel or glue, the amount of plastic over the palate and into the gumline is reduced and the placement of implants reduces some of the bone loss in the jaw.

 

 

 

 

 

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Figure 7: Implant stabilized over denture. The denture is removable, but secured by implants to improve stability and balance 

 

Fixed Implant Retained Prosthesis

Fixed implant retained prosthetics are the state-of-the-art dental prosthesis for full arch rehabilitation.  The procedure is known as the All-On-4 process or Hybrid Prosthesis.  A hybrid prosthetic is permanently retained in the mouth by four to eight implants and can only be removed by your dentist.  The prosthetic is very thin and appears like natural teeth.  The base is custom fit to the contours of your gums so there is a very tight fit, minimizing any food becoming lodged beneath the teeth. Patients are usually very pleased with the hybrid prosthesis because it is very thin and does not extend into the gumline or over the palate. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Figure 8: Implant retained prosthesis. The prosthetic can only be removed by your dentist.  

 

What is the process when receiving a dental implant?

Dr. David Beemer will follow routine procedures to evaluate your candidacy for a dental implant.  Your medical history and general health will be evaluated, the dental implant site will be carefully evaluated, the way you bite will be considered, and the esthetic concerns will be carefully evaluated.  In some cases, a special scan, called a Cone Beam Computed Tomography (CBCT), will be administered so the Dr. Beemer can have a 3-D representation of your teeth, skull, and sinus and nerve location.​

 

Dental implant surgery is generally a comfortable process performed while your mouth is numb.  Most people say that they feel vibrations from the hand piece when preparing the implant site.  When the surgery is completed there are no open wounds and very little post-operative discomfort.  In most cases, the dental implant will remain under the gums for up to 6 months to fully integrate into the bone.  

 

When the implant is fully integrated into the bone, the implant will be uncovered and prepared for the dental crown.  The implant uncovery is also done while your mouth is numb.  A small incision is made in the gum above the dental implant and a small healing cap is placed on the dental implant to properly contour the gum to prepare it for the dental crown. Over a course of two to three visits, after the uncovery, you will have impressions taken and finally, you will receive your dental crown.

The placement of an implant requires expert knowledge for proper surgical planning, proper implant placement and proper attachment of the crown.  Dr. David Beemer, of SC Cosmetic & Implant Dentistry in Westminster, South Carolina have extensive experience and training in implant dentistry.  He utilizes state-of-the-art surgical approaches to restore oral health and improve the appearance of your smile.  ​

At SC Cosmetic & Implant Dentistry, we offer several options for your dental implant needs. We are located in Westminster, SC, just miles from Seneca, Clemson, Walhalla, Fair Play and Hartwell, GA.  Our state-of-the-art dental practice provides our patients with the highest quality of dental implant care. 

Parts of a dental implant
removable partial denture
example of dental bridge
example of single implant
implant bridge
dentures
example of snap on denture
overdenture illustration
example of all on 4 dental prosthesis
illustration of all on 4