Joseph Niamtu III, DMD is an oral and maxillofacial surgeon who transformed the main focus of his Virginia-based practice to cosmetic facial surgery. He told the AAID audience that for many dental implant patients restoring facial volume is as critical as the dental restoration for achieving optimal cosmetic outcomes. "The face is the frame for cosmetic dentistry, and dentists should consider the benefits of facial volume restoration when performing implant surgery on older patients with facial aging," said Niamtu. "The standard today requires consideration of facial structures and volume restoration to maximize patient satisfaction with cosmetic and restorative dental procedures."
Naimtu said all states allow dentists to give Botox injections for purely dental reasons, such as relieving temporomandibular (TMJ) pain, but not for cosmetic purposes. He added that approximately 8 percent of dentists in North America now provide Botox cosmetic treatment for patients and the number is growing, as state dental boards lobby to allow dentists to use the agent for cosmetic dentistry.
Most dentists, however, still are not aware of the considerable benefits Botox offers for cosmetic dental treatment, according to Niamtu "How often do we see perfectly restored teeth framed by thin or wrinkled lips" he said. "Soft tissues around the mouth are just as important as nicely restored white teeth in creating an attractive smile." Also, for older dental implant patients with facial aging, the corners the mouth begin to turn down and wrinkles appear around the lips. Niamtu advised that Botox can be used by dentists to relax affected muscles to raise mouth corners and smooth wrinkles to assure successful and satisfying outcomes.
Niamtu said Botox therapy is a natural and logical expansion for dental practices. "Dentists have as much training and knowledge in the oral and maxillofacial area as dermatologists and other providers, so they, with proper training, can be as proficient in administering Botox, Restylane and other filling agents. This clearly is the new future for the achieving optimal aesthetic outcomes in the delivery of cosmetic and restorative dental care."
About Dental Implants
Dental implants are artificial tooth roots inserted into the jaw to replace missing teeth. They are titanium screws a dentist inserts into the jawbone and affixes a prosthetic tooth or crown. Titanium implants over time fuse naturally with bone, a process known as Osteointegration.
Implant surgery can replace one or more teeth provided there is sufficient bone to support the implants. Today, implants with attached crowns are the preferred method for treating tooth loss because they function the same as natural teeth and help preserve the jaw structure by preventing atrophy from bone loss. Bridgework and dentures address the cosmetic problem of missing teeth but do not prevent bone loss. Permanent implants maintain proper chewing function and exert appropriate, natural forces on the jawbone to keep it functional and healthy.
About AAID -Based in Chicago, AAID can help consumers find a local credentialed implant dentist at www.aaid.com or call (312) 335-1550. It is the first organization dedicated to maintaining the highest standards of implant dentistry by supporting research and education to advance comprehensive implant knowledge.