Zygomatic Implants vs Dental Implants: What’s the Difference?

Dental implants are the gold-standard treatment for
restoring your smile. For people with missing teeth, they provide a long-term
solution in terms of functionality and aesthetics. Thanks to major advances in
implant dentistry, you no longer have to live with extensive tooth loss or poorly
fitting dentures. While many are familiar with the concept of dental implants,
there are different types available. 

Dr. Elliot Koschitzki, a board-certified Oral Implantologist, offers both zygomatic dental implants and traditional dental implants to his patients in Long Island. The type of implant used will depend on the health and stability of the jawbone, as well the number and location of missing teeth.

Let’s explore some of the key differences between zygomatic implants and conventional dental implants.

Zygomatic implant: for patients with severe jawbone loss

If you were told that you cannot get traditional dental implants because of an atrophied jaw bone, a zygomatic dental implant may be an excellent alternative. Zygomatic implants are attached to the cheek bone (zygoma), which provides a secure anchor point. They are a safe and reliable option for replacing an entire upper arch of missing teeth, or teeth that have been damaged by periodontal disease. 

These special implants are an ideal option for patients who lack sufficient bone mass in the maxilla. Zygomatic implants may be used in conjunction with conventional dental implants to restore missing teeth in the upper and lower jaw. 

A major benefit of zygomatic dental implants is that the need for bone grafting or sinus lift procedures is sidestepped completely, and the surgery is completed in one stage. For this reason, zygomatic implants recovery time is much faster.

Dental implants: surgically anchored to healthy jawbone

All dental implants are designed to provide a strong foundation for replacement teeth. In order to get traditional dental implants, there must be sufficient healthy bone in the jaw. The artificial tooth root – made of titanium – is inserted in the empty root socket where it will gradually fuse with the bone, creating a stable bond. This root structure is then fitted with a prosthetic tooth or bridge. Some patients may need a bone graft or sinus augmentation to be eligible for traditional dental implants. In most cases, the implant procedure takes two visits.

Benefits of zygomatic and traditional dental implants

Missing teeth can negatively affect your daily life and self-esteem. Dental implants – whether anchored to your jawbone or cheekbone – are a long-lasting solution that look and function just like your natural teeth.

  • Long-term results: Dental implants can last a lifetime if properly cared for. Both zygomatic and traditional implants have a high success rate of 12-15+ years.
  • Look and behave like natural teeth: Dental implants are securely fixed into the jawbone or cheekbone, so the prosthetic is strong and functions like your natural teeth. The prosthetic crown or bridge is custom-made to mimic the size, shape, and color of your remaining teeth.
  • Easy to care for: Unlike dentures, which need to be removed and cleaned, dental implants are fixed in place, and there is no risk of them slipping or falling out.
  • Prevents further bone atrophy: When you lose a tooth, the jawbone under it shrinks becauuse it is no longer stimulated by the root of the tooth. Over time, this can result in a change to the shape of your face, potentially causing you to look older than you actually are. Dental implants stimulate the jaw, just like natural teeth, preventing further bone loss.
  • Savor your favorite snacks: Crunchy, chewy and hard foods can be tough for those with missing teeth. Implants provide full bite restoration, allowing you to enjoy your favorite foods once again.
  • Enhanced oral functionality: Implants let you eat, talk, laugh, and smile with total confidence
  • Support your facial structure: Over time, bone loss in the jaw can lend a sunken and aged appearance. Dental implants restore volume and prevent future atrophy and facial sagging.
  • Help prevent gum disease: Gaps caused by missing teeth can trap food particles and contribute to gum disease. Implants can help promote oral hygiene and prevent periodontal problems from developing.

Which type of dental implant is right for you?

Whether you need to restore a few missing teeth or want an entire smile makeover, you’re in great hands at Long Island Implant and Cosmetic Dentistry. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Nick or Dr. Elliot in our convenient office locations in Rocky Point and Huntington, Long Island.

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