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Keep Moving Forward With Dental Implants

Posted on March 17th, 2016

Teacher Reed B. Markham once said, “If you are standing still, you are also going backwards. It takes great effort to maintain forward movement.”

With this sentiment in mind, the staff at Atlanta West Dentistry in Marietta, GA is always looking to move forward for ourselves as professionals and for you, our patients.

We believe that you deserve the best dental care that we can offer. We can only do that if we incorporate new technology and new techniques into our practice.

Own own Dr. Lauren Bowersox is a good example of this.

Further Education

Dr. Bowersox graduated from the University of Georgia, then continued her studies at The Medical College of Virginia at Virginia Commonwealth University. There, she received her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree.

She completed a two-year residency at Georgia Regents University. In that time, she became proficient in a number of areas — IV sedation, oral surgery, treating complex cases, and dental implant placement.

In 2014, Dr. Bowersox earned a Fellowship in the International Congress of Oral Implantologists. This past October, she received her Mastership from the ICOI.

Some of the requirements for a Mastership include completion of at least 40 implant cases and completion of 100 hours of continuing education.

This is a recognition of her clinical experience, education, and research, and it is an example of our dedication to providing high-quality dental care to all our patients.

What is Implantology?

Implantology is an area of dentistry that focuses on the placement of dental implants.

Dental implants have been used in one form or another for several decades, although what we consider modern implants became more common in the 1970s.

Modern implants actually go back to research done by an orthopedic surgeon, Per-Ingvar Brånemark, in the 1950s.

Dr. Brånemark had placed a titanium cylinder into the leg bone of a rabbit. When he later attempted to remove the cylinder, he found that the bone had grown around it and bonded with it. This process, known as osseointegration, meant the cylinder was held firmly in place.

This set the state for continued research on titanium for implants in dentistry, as well as other medical fields.

Putting Knowledge To Use

Scientists don’t always know that will become of their research, but in the case of titanium implants, it has lead to some important breakthrough in tooth replacement.

Thousands of years before titanium implants existed, people knew that losing teeth was a bad thing.

Because of this, they tried various ways of replacing teeth, such as animal bones, animal teeth, ivory, and carved stones. At one time, it was common to remove teeth from dead bodies so they could be used to replace lost teeth.

With more time, ceramic tooth replacements were created because of their tooth-like appearance and because they function like teeth for biting and chewing food.

Those tooth replacements only did part of the job, however. They only replaced the crowns, which are the part of your teeth that other people can see.

Below the gumline, something was still missing. Without a replacement for the roots of human teeth, people often suffered bone loss. Over time, this loss of bone density could cause people to have a sunken in appearance to their faces.

Dental implants now serve as replacements for missing roots. They help to keep the supporting bone structure healthy, which prevents bone loss.

At our office, we use dental implants in a number of ways:

  • Dental crowns — For patients who have lost a single tooth, a dental implant can be paired with a dental crown. This fills in the gap in their smiles and fills the spaces below the gumline as well.
  • Dental bridges — For patients who are missing more than one tooth, a dental bridge is an excellent replacement option. Like crowns, bridges can be placed on a dental implant or implants to provide support and stability.
  • Dentures — If you think the only way to hold dentures in your mouth is with an adhesive, then we have a surprise for you. Dental implants can be placed at multiple points in your bone, then dentures can be attached.
  • Mini implants — Patients who have experienced loss of bone density may not be able to support traditional implants. However, mini implants are smaller. This allows us to place them for many patients in spite of their less than perfect jawbones.

Keep Learning

Just as our staff at Atlanta West Dentistry will keep learning new ways to help our patients, we welcome you to learn more for yourself.

If you have questions about dental implants or any of our other services, please call our dentist office in Marietta, GA at (770) 941-6979 or fill out our online contact form.