What Are Zygomatic Dental Implants?
A zygomatic dental implant is a tooth replacement placed in the zygomatic bone, which is a bone located in the cheek area of the upper jaw. Zygomatic implants are longer than traditional dental implants and provide additional support for patients with severe bone loss in the cheekbone of the upper jaw.
Zygomatic implants are designed to anchor a prosthetic tooth, such as a dental bridge or a denture, in the upper jaw. The implant is surgically placed in the zygomatic bone, which is a stronger and denser bone than the jawbone, allowing it to support the weight of the prosthetic.
Zygomatic Implant Benefits
The Benefits of zygomatic dental implants include:
- A strong foundation for dental restorations: Zygomatic implants provide strong foundations for restorations such as dental bridges or dentures, allowing patients to regain the ability to speak and chew comfortably.
- Suitable option for patients with severe bone loss: These implants are an option for patients with severe bone loss in the upper jaw who may not be candidates for traditional dental implant placement. There’s also no need for a bone grafting procedure.
- Faster recovery: The recovery time after zygomatic implant placement is typically shorter than traditional implant placement, and patients can return to their normal activities within a few days.
- Long-lasting: When properly cared for, zygomatic dental implants can last for many years, providing patients with a long-lasting solution.
- Aesthetically pleasing: Zygomatic dental implants offer a natural-looking solution for missing teeth, which can improve patients’ confidence and self-esteem.
Zygomatic Implant Surgery
Unlike traditional dental implants, which are placed anywhere in the upper jaw or lower jaw, zygomatic implants provide additional support for patients with severe bone loss in the upper jaw.
Here’s a step-by-step overview of the zygomatic dental implant procedure:
- Consultation: The first step in the process is a consultation with an oral and maxillofacial surgeon or dentist who specializes in implant dentistry. During this consultation, your oral health will be evaluated, and they’ll determine if zygomatic implants are a suitable treatment option.
- Planning: If zygomatic implants are best for you, the dentist will use advanced dental implant technology, such as CT scans, to create a personalized treatment plan. The plan will determine the optimal placement of the implants and ensure that the prosthetic teeth will be properly aligned.
- Dental Sedation: Before the procedure begins, the patient will receive local anesthesia or IV sedation to numb the surgical area.
- Incisions: The surgeon will make small incisions in the gum tissue to access the zygomatic bone. They’ll place the implants directly into the bone, providing a stronger foundation for the prosthetic teeth.
- Attachment: Once the implants are securely in place, the surgeon will attach abutments to the top of the implants. These abutments serve as connectors between the implant and the prosthetic teeth.
- Healing: After the procedure is complete, the patient will need to allow time for the implants to heal and integrate with the bone. This process typically takes several months and requires careful oral hygiene and regular check-ups with the dentist.
- Prosthetic Teeth: Once the implants have fully healed, the dentist will attach the prosthetic teeth, such as a dental bridge or denture. These teeth will be customized to fit the patient’s mouth and provide a natural-looking solution for missing teeth.
Are Zygomatic Implants Commonly Used?
While zygomatic implants are a possible treatment option for those with severe jaw bone loss, endosteal dental implants remain the most common option for tooth replacement. Zygomatic implants are considered a specialized treatment. Using zygomatic implants depends on several factors, including the patient’s individual needs, the oral surgeon’s experience and expertise, and the availability of zygomatic implant systems. It’s estimated that zygomatic implants are used in a small percentage of dental implant cases.
Cost of Zygomatic Implants
Compared to traditional dental implants, zygomatic implants are more expensive because of their specialized nature and the additional surgical expertise required to place them. Patients should expect to pay several thousand dollars per zygomatic implant, with costs ranging from $8,000 to $15,000 per arch, or up to $30,000 for a full set of zygomatic implants.
The cost of zygomatic dental implants isn’t typically covered by dental insurance. However, some insurance plans may cover a portion of the cost, so it’s important to check with your insurance provider before undergoing the procedure.
Patients should also consider the long-term benefits of zygomatic implants when considering the cost. While the initial cost may be higher than traditional implants, zygomatic implants offer a long-lasting solution for patients with severe bone loss, eliminating the need for costly bone grafting procedures or sinus lifts and ensuring a strong foundation for dental restorations for many years.
Frequently Asked Questions
Zygomatic dental implants are made of high-quality materials, and, with proper care, they can last a lifetime. However, just like traditional dental implants, the lifespan of a zygomatic implant can vary from patient to patient, depending on factors such as oral hygiene and overall health.
As with any surgical procedure, there are potential risks associated with placing zygomatic dental implants. These include:
- Nerve damage
- Implant failure
However, these risks are generally low when the procedure is performed by a qualified and experienced oral surgeon or dentist.
The recovery process can vary from patient to patient, but most patients can expect to return to their normal activities within a few days to a week after the procedure. However, it may take several months for the implant to fully integrate with the bone and for the final restoration to be placed on traditional implants.
Restore Your Smile With Zygomatic Implants
Achieve your dream smile and replace your missing teeth with zygomatic dental implants. To learn more about zygomatic implants and if they’re the best choice for your dental needs, contact your dentist today. If you live in Seattle, our dentist has the experience needed to help you achieve your dream smile. Contact us today to discuss your treatment options.