Dental Implants: A Primer
Millions of Americans have lost a tooth to injury or disease. As a
result, many of these people believe they will never again be able to
chew, speak, or smile without feeling self-conscious. But dental
implants can allow these individuals to recover from the disaster of
tooth loss. A dental implant is a small metal post that serves as a
substitute for a natural tooth root. Inserted surgically into the
jawbone, it provides a stable base upon which an artificial tooth or
teeth can be anchored. The basic concept of implants is so simple
that people thousands of years ago even fashioned primitive implants
that actually worked.
Illustration comparing a natural tooth
(left) and a dental implant (right)
When Dr. Babbush entered dental school
during the late 1950s, implants were still considered a dangerous fad.
But a 1968 experiment he conducted with animals proved to be highly
successful. Eighteen months after the initial surgery, the implants were
in place and the animals were able to chew comfortably. Dr. Babbush
soon became convinced that implants would eventually revolutionize
dentistry and has since dedicated his research, training and dental
practice to advancing the art of implant reconstructive surgery.
the course of the past 30 years, the technology of implant dentistry has
evolved rapidly. Implants today are made of durable materials and are
designed to hold up for years. It is expected today, for every one
hundred implants placed, that
nearly 95 percent will be functioning well for 10 years and beyond.
And the personal success stories of those who have had dental implant
reconstructive surgery affirm for anyone who is missing teeth the
improvement in quality-of-life that implant dentistry has to offer.
Unfortunately, in spite of the huge
technological advances in recent decades, many people still believe that
implants are experimental. Only a small fraction of those who could
benefit from implants are actually receiving them. Those who needlessly
suffer from missing teeth, ill fitting dentures or a variety of other
oral health maladies should know that statistics complied by The Dental
Implant Center as well as other reliable scientific researchers have
proven beyond a doubt that implants are safe, effective, and reliable.
It is also important to point out that studies demonstrate implants
provide both physical value as well as immeasurable emotional benefit.
Dental implants offer hope and remedy for so many who thought they had