Endosteal Implant: What You Need to Know

The endosteal implant is a type of implant that can help patients restore their smile after missing one tooth or many. A lot goes into selecting the best implant for your situation, so read on to learn more to help you and your dentist decide which course of treatment is the right fit.

What Are Endosteal Implants?

An implant of this type is placed directly into the jawbone. According to the American Academy of Periodontology, the endosteal implant is the most common implant used in dentistry. The two common types of endosteal implants are cylinder (also called screw-type) and blade. Following implant placement and healing of either type, prosthetic teeth are affixed to the implant(s) for patients who have lost teeth and are considering the various options for tooth replacement.

What Are the Components of the Endosteal Implant?

Endosteal implants have several parts. The American Academy of Implant Dentistry notes that cylinder form is the more common of the two types of endosteal implant. The cylinder form consists of a screw, a small cylinder made of titanium, ceramic, or polymeric, and an abutment. The blade form differs in that it may have one or more abutments. In both cylinder and blade types, the prosthetic tooth replacement is fabricated to be placed on the abutment portion of the implant.

What Is the Sequence of Steps in Placement?

After the tooth is removed, and the dental professional has determined the patient is a viable candidate for a successful implant, he or she will come in for a consultation to plan for implant placement. The consultation appointment occurs to explain to the patient the series of appointments, time commitments and costs for the implant and restoration. After the patient signs consent for the implant to be placed, he or she schedules for the placement of the screw and cylinder portions of the implant. Prior to this appointment, the dental surgeon may prescribe an antibiotic or other medications for the patient to use pre- and post-operatively.

After the screw and cylinder portions are placed, it is likely the surgeon may allow time for the patient's bone (generally four to six weeks) to grow around the implant so it will be permanently accepted by the patient's body. This process is called osseointegration, and refers to the process of the bone and implant bonding for a strong foundation for long-term strength. In this time frame, the patient goes about eating, drinking and speaking normally. After this time passes, the patient returns to the oral surgeon for placement of the abutment onto the dental implant. Then, a dental crown, denture or bridge can be fabricated to replace the missing tooth.

How Do You Effectively Care for an Implant?

Effective and regular cleansing of an implant in the mouth will help prevent inflammation. It is important to reduce bacteria by using a silica toothpaste. Colgate Total® Advanced Deep Clean Toothpaste is clinically shown to effectively kill germs for up to 12 hours. It is imperative to keep the abutment area of the implant as clean as possible to decrease inflammation and ensure implant success.

This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.

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Top Oral Care Tips for IMPLANTS

Most dental implants are successful, and there are a few steps you can take to help ensure success and make your implant last.

  • Practice good oral hygiene – brush twice a day and floss once daily. Using interdental brushes, brushes that slide between teeth, can help clean the hard to reach areas around your implant.

  • Quit smoking – smoking can weaken the bone structure and can contribute to implant failure.

  • Visit your dentist – cleanings and exams every six months can help ensure your implant is in good condition, and that it stays that way.

  • Avoid chewing on hard foods – don’t chew on hard items such as ice and hard candy because they can break the crown and your natural teeth.