Costa Rica Dental Tourism – Tooth loss or extraction can cause jawbone deterioration, but other factors like gum disease, infection, sinus conditions, trauma, dentures and bridges also contribute to the weakening of the bone along the jaw.
Use of dental implant (a titanium screw inserted in the place of missing tooth root topped by ceramic crown) to replace missing tooth or teeth can help stop further bone deterioration. The titanium screw acting as tooth root is coated with bone-growth stimulators that encourage bonding between the bone and the implant. Since the titanium screws are biocompatible, the body considers it as natural tooth thus bone grow and bond with the titanium screw and conform to the shape of the new metal root.
Remember thought that just like other dental procedures, for a dental implant to be successful the patient needs to have enough bones in the jaw to support and hold the implant in place. If there is insufficient bone, then bone grafting may be needed to ensure the success of implants. Bone grafting can be done with the use of synthetic or natural bone and is considered as the best option for patients whose upper palette has already eroded and the sinus cavity has already shifted downwards.
To determine which part of the jaw has enough bone to hold an implant a 3-D CAT-scanner called Orthopantomograph is used. It helps dentists see where nerves and sinuses are and check where the bone is dense enough to hold an implant in place. Once a scan of the patient’s mouth is taken, an “imaging” software is used to turn a simulation to preview how implants will best work in a patient’s mouth and at what angle the implant should be placed inside the mouth.
When it comes to placing the implants, the condition of the bone plays a big factor in that if a patient has good bone condition, the dentist can already place the titanium implant during the first visit, place the abutment on the second visit and clasp the crown on the abutment during the third visit. Keep in mind though that even if the actual placement of root, abutment and crown just takes a few minutes, the time needed for the gum to heal takes a while. For patients who have implants on the bottom palette, it takes around three months for the healing of the gum and bonding of bone to the implant, while for upper palette, it takes twice as much time.
Because bones are also like rubber in that it expands and contracts, implants sometimes do not require that a hole be drilled into the jawbone. Expansion screws can be used to widen the root hole of a missing tooth with a little pressure. First, a small expansion screw is inserted into the hole to stretch the bone, it is then removed and another slightly larger expansion screw is inserted to stretch the bone a bit more. The process is done a repeatedly until the hole is big enough for the implant to be inserted.
Another thing to consider is the general health of the patient who wants to have dental implants; although implants are now a viable option for many people those who have diabetes, undergoing radiation treatments and those taking osteoporosis medication should discuss their medical condition with their dentists first as these conditions are detrimental to the overall success of dental implants.
If you are considering on getting an implant yet worried over the price of the procedure at home, you always have the option to take advantage of dental tourism in Costa Rica. If in the United States the cost of a single dental implant is around $3,600 in Costa Rica you can get as much as 60% savings. Even if you factor in the travel fare, board and lodging, doctor’s fee and price of actual procedure, you will still spend less compared to getting it done at home. On top of that, the quality of the service is just as good as that at home, and you get to travel around the gorgeous country of Costa Rica before and after your dental procedure.
There is a lot of information to digest when it comes to preparing for your dental vacation to Costa Rica. Entry requirements to Costa Rica, how to find a dentist or dental clinic, what to expect for your specific procedure ( dental implants, porcelain veneers, crowns and bridges, full mouth restorations and much more) and so much more.
The Medical Tourism & Travel Guide Offers a Free E-Book to answer all your questions.