Dental-Implant-Before-and-AfterMany people believe that implant dentistry is simple: the dentist just has to place the implant into the jaw, wait for the bone to grow around the implant to stabilize it, and then place a crown. In fact, it is much more involved than that.

Bone Grafting

Today, to make sure that an implant is placed in the correct position, the surgeon will often require the patient to get a CT scan so that the jaws can be properly evaluated prior to the surgery. This 3D imaging allows the surgeon to fully visualize the tooth and jaw bones prior to the surgery and to plan the correct placement of the implant before surgery. This also helps the surgeon to avoid important anatomic structures such as nerves and sinuses. However, on occasion the surgeon finds that there isn’t enough bone to place the implant into. This happens when a tooth has been removed and the supporting bone has “melted away” without the tooth’s presence. When this occurs, the surgeon has to “rebuild” the bone to make sure that the implant looks like a tooth rather than like an implant. This process of rebuilding the bone is called bone grafting.

New Techniques for Implant Placement

There are many new techniques in bone grafting, implant placement and management of the soft tissues (gums). I have been focusing my continuing education on these new techniques. For the past year, I have been participating in a Mastery Level course for Advanced Implant Placement. I have now completed 3 out of 4 of the sessions. Each session included 4-5 days of lectures and exams. These sessions also required me to complete hundreds of hours of videos on these new techniques.

This week I am about to embark on the final session of this course being held in Los Angeles. I am proud to tell you that so far I have passed every exam and all requirements. This session is 5 days long and has 2 exams. I hope to return to North York armed with more new knowledge and skills to bring to my patients, but also a certificate of completion which I will proudly post in my office.

I will keep you informed, and hopefully at this time next week, I will be able to boast about my graduation and have even more knowledge to use for the benefit of my dental implant patients.