Eby Dental Care Blog

Posts for tag: dental implants

TheRealTruthBehindEdHelmsMissingToothinTheHangover

Ed Helms is best known for his role as the self-absorbed, Ivy League sales rep, Andy Bernard, on television's The Office. But to millions of fans he's also Stu, a member of a bachelor trip to Las Vegas in the 2009 movie The Hangover. In it, Stu and his friends wake up from a wild night on the Strip to find some things missing: the groom-to-be, their memories and, for Stu, a front tooth.

In reality, the missing tooth gag wasn't a Hollywood makeup or CGI (computer-generated imagery) trick—it was Ed Helm's actual missing tooth. According to Helms, the front tooth in question never developed and he had obtained a dental implant to replace it. He had the implant crown removed for the Hangover movie and then replaced after filming.

Helms' dental situation isn't that unusual. Although most of the 170 million-plus teeth missing from Americans' mouths are due to disease or trauma, a few happened because the teeth never formed. While most of these congenitally missing teeth are in the back of the mouth, a few, as in Helms' case, involve front teeth in the “smile zone,” which can profoundly affect appearance.

Fortunately, people missing undeveloped teeth have several good options to restore their smiles and dental function. The kind of tooth missing could help determine which option to use. For example, a bridge supported by the teeth on either side of the gap might work well if the teeth on either side are in need of crowns.

If the missing tooth happens to be one or both of the lateral incisors (on either side of the centermost teeth), it could be possible to move the canine teeth (the pointy ones, also called eye teeth) to fill the gap. This technique, known as canine substitution, may also require further modification—either by softening the canines' pointed tips, crowning them or applying veneers—to help the repositioned teeth look more natural.

The optimal solution, though, is to replace a missing tooth with a dental implant which then has a lifelike crown attached to it, as Ed Helms did to get his winning smile. Implant-supported replacement teeth are closest to natural teeth in terms of both appearance and function. Implants, though, shouldn't be placed until the jaw has fully developed, usually in early adulthood. A younger person may need a temporary restoration like a bonded bridge or a partial denture until they're ready for an implant.

Whatever the method, there's an effective way to restore missing teeth. Seeing us for an initial exam is the first step toward your own winning smile.

If you would like more information about restoring missing teeth, please contact us or schedule a consultation. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine article “Dental Implants.”

By Eby Dental Care
August 06, 2020
Category: Oral Health

Teeth grinding can quickly wear teeth down, as well as cause headaches, jaw pain, and other side effects. One sometimes overlooked cause of teeth grinding is tooth loss. Dental implants can potentially reduce teeth grinding due to tooth loss by helping fill in the gaps where teeth are missing. Dental implants are available at Eby Dental Care in Okemos MI, where Dr. Eric Eby can determine if you are a candidate for this tooth-replacement option.

Tooth Loss and Bruxism

Tooth loss can affect the alignment of your smile so that the top and bottom rows of teeth are unable to line up properly. In other words, missing teeth can cause your smile to be out of alignment or off balance. This leads to shifting and grinding of the teeth because they cannot find a balanced resting position. Teeth grinding, which is also referred to as bruxism, can get worse during times when an individual is experiencing stress or anxiety. Seeking treatment for teeth grinding due to tooth loss is critical to prevent the remaining teeth from being worn down.

How Dental Implants in Okemos Can Help

Teeth grinding that has developed following tooth loss is treated by filling in the gaps where teeth are missing. Dental implants are an outstanding and reliable long-term option for restoring your smile. Dental implants take the place of tooth roots where teeth are missing and work in conjunction with dental crowns, bridgework, or implant-supported overdentures to replace lost teeth.

Dental Implants Okemos are surgically placed in the jawbone, which allows them to firmly and securely anchor artificial teeth in place. With proper care, dental implants have the potential to hold replacement teeth, such as dental crowns, in place permanently. The skilled dentist at our office in Okemos can determine if dental implants are an option for you. Candidates for dental implants must have enough jawbone to support the placement of the implants. Unfortunately, in addition to sometimes causing bruxism, tooth loss can also result in loss of bone.

If teeth grinding persists even after the placement of dental implants and artificial teeth, there are interventions that can help. Wearing a mouthguard at night can protect both natural and replacement teeth from being worn down by grinding. Developing strategies for reducing stress and alleviating anxiety can also help.

Dental implants can potentially minimize or eliminate teeth grinding due to tooth loss, while also restoring your smile. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Eric Eby to find out if you are a candidate for dental implants by calling Eby Dental Care in Okemos MI at (517) 349-9860.

SuccesswithDentalImplantsDependsonAttentiontoDetail

Dental implants are all the rage. And why not — not only are these tooth replacements life-like and highly functional, they have an amazing 95% ten-year success rate.

Some of that success is due to their unique design. Technically a root replacement, an implant's metal titanium post is surgically placed in the jawbone, where bone grows and adheres to it over time. This creates a strong connection that stands up well to the forces created by biting and chewing.

But there's more to their longevity than design. Success also depends on a careful, planned process that begins long before surgery.

It starts with a detailed oral examination to determine the best placement for the implant. Besides regular x-rays, we may also perform CT scans to create a three-dimensional view of your jaw. With this we can locate and avoid nerves, sinus cavities or other structures near the implant site.

The examination also helps us determine if you've experienced any bone loss, a normal occurrence after tooth loss. Implants require an adequate amount of bone to achieve the best position. A good position ensures future bone integration and the best appearance result.

The same attention to detail extends to the actual surgery to place the implant. We fashion the site to receive the implant by sequentially drilling larger tapered channels until we achieve the right size fit for the implant. During drilling we avoid overheating the bone, which could ultimately weaken and damage the implant's stability.

We'll also need to provide protection for the implant while it integrates with the bone. In most implantations, we do this by suturing the gum tissue over the implant. We take a different approach with a “Tooth in a Day” procedure where we attach a crown (the visible portion of the tooth) right after implant surgery. In this case we'll install a crown (which is actually temporary) that's a little shorter than the adjacent teeth. The natural teeth around it will absorb the forces produced while chewing and not the implant crown.

Focusing on these and other factors will greatly reduce the risk of implant failure. Paying careful attention to them helps ensure your new smile is a lasting one.

If you would like more information on dental implants to restore your smile, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Dental Implants: A Tooth Replacement Method That Rarely Fails.”

By Eby Dental Care
February 25, 2020
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dental implants  

Struggling with tooth loss? Here at Eby Dental Care in Okemos, MI, your dentist, Dr. Eric Eby, offers patients dental implants to help restore missing teeth. More successful and longer-lasting than other restorative dental services, read on to learn more about this unique treatment option.

More about Dental Implants

Dental implants are small titanium posts that replace missing tooth roots. Inserted into the jawbone during a minor surgical procedure, the titanium post is biocompatible so the body won't reject it and the titanium post fuses to the rest of the jawbone to reinforce bones.

The procedure replaces either a single tooth or multiple missing teeth and can be used in conjunction with other dental procedures like dentures. Dental implants take approximately 3-to-6 months to heal and fuse with the jaw, after which a porcelain crown matching the rest of your teeth is placed on top.

Post-procedural care involves using over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication like ibuprofen or OTC pain-relievers. Icing the procedural area is also helpful.

How to Care for Dental Implants

Dental implants have a 95% success rate which requires the same care natural teeth require. Here are some steps to improving your oral hygiene:

  • Daily brushing using a soft-bristled toothbrush
  • Floss every night before bed
  • Visit your Okemos dentist for your biannual dental checkups
  • Get professional cleanings twice a year

Taking proper care of your teeth prevents decay and gum tissues. It's very important to arm yourself against serious dental issues that may result in tooth loss again.

Am I a Candidate for Dental Implants?

Most people qualify for dental implant treatment upon examination. During this consultation, your dentist assesses your jawbone's density and makes sure that no decay is present.

Need a Consultation?

Interested in replacing missing teeth with dental implants from Eby Dental Care? If so, call Dr. Eric Eby, your Okemos, MI, dentist at (517) 349-9860 to schedule an appointment!

FlossingDailyAroundImplantswillHelpPreventLosingYourBridge

Implant-supported fixed bridges are growing in popularity because they offer superior support to traditional bridges or dentures. They can also improve bone health thanks to the affinity between bone cells and the implants' titanium posts.

Even so, you'll still need to stay alert to the threat of periodontal (gum) disease. This bacterial infection usually triggered by dental plaque could ultimately infect the underlying bone and cause it to deteriorate. As a result the implants could loosen and cause you to lose your bridgework.

To avoid this you'll need to be as diligent with removing plaque from around your implants as you would with natural teeth. The best means for doing this is to floss around each implant post between the bridgework and the natural gums.

This type of flossing is quite different than with natural teeth where you work the floss in between each tooth. With your bridgework you'll need to thread the floss between it and the gums with the help of a floss threader, a small handheld device with a loop on one end and a stiff flat edge on the other.

To use it you'll first pull off about 18" of dental floss and thread it through the loop. You'll then gently work the sharper end between the gums and bridge from the cheek side toward the tongue. Once through to the tongue side, you'll hold one end of the floss and pull the floss threader away with the other until the floss is now underneath the bridge.

You'll then loop each end of the floss around your fingers on each hand and work the floss up and down the sides of the nearest tooth or implant. You'll then release one hand from the floss and pull the floss out from beneath the bridge. Rethread it in the threader and move to the next section of the bridge and clean those implants.

You can also use other methods like specialized floss with stiffened ends for threading, an oral irrigator (or "water flosser") that emits a pressurized spray of water to loosen plaque, or an interproximal brush that can reach into narrow spaces. If you choose an interproximal brush, however, be sure it's not made with metal wire, which can scratch the implant and create microscopic crevices for plaque.

Use the method you and your dentist think best to keep your implants plaque-free. Doing so will help reduce your risk of a gum infection that could endanger your implant-supported bridgework.

If you would like more information on implant-supported bridges, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Oral Hygiene for Fixed Bridgework.”