Dr. Hochberg concludPastedGraphic-1ed his 13-year position as editor of the American Academy of Implant Dentistry’s (AAID) newsletter and became the AAID’s Vice-President in October 2015. For his final interview he was honored to spend time speaking with Dr. Carl Misch, one of his early mentors. Dr. Misch is considered one of the leading dentists responsible for the surgical and prosthetic protocols developed to improve patients’ lives with dental implants.

The AAID is a 64-year-old organization that was founded to provide education to dentists wishing to offer their patients a treatment modality to replace missing teeth. The AAID also helps ensure that participating dentists are well trained by bestowing credentials to members who, after extensive education and rigorous testing, have shown their ability to offer expertise in this exciting field of dentistry. As a Fellow in the AAID and a Diplomate in the American Board of Oral Implantology (ABOI), Dr. Hochberg has been providing patients with the opportunity to transform their lives with dental implants for over 30 years.

Why so much talk about Dental Implants?

Simply put, a dental implant is often recommended when the entire tooth, including the root of the tooth as well as the visible portion of the tooth, called the ‘crown’, is no longer in place due to accident or disease. A dental implant, made of titanium, replaces tooth’s natural root and a dental implant crown is fabricated to replace the missing ‘crown’ portion. No longer do we need to involve adjacent teeth when only one tooth is missing. Nor, when all teeth are missing, do patients need to wear dentures that are not secure and, are oftentimes, uncomfortable. Even those who previously wore dentures can now make healthier food choices instead of selecting what is easiest to chew.

 Does it matter that a tooth is missing?

Another often-overlooked factor happens when one or more teeth are missing is the impact that a missing tooth has on the jaw. Chewing on ones teeth, which includes a root (be it a natural tooth’s root or a dental implant), stimulates the bone that surrounds the root of the tooth. This keeps the bone healthy and the facial structure natural. Without the continuous stimulation of the bone it can shrink. This not only causes altered facial aesthetics, such as areas that appear shrunken, but also can negatively effect the teeth in the arch, the bite and the ability to restore the area at a later time.

Am I a candidate?

As each patient’s needs are unique, Dr. Hochberg takes time to discuss the patient’s history, thoroughly evaluates their needs and determines the best treatment plan to achieve the patient’s functional as well as esthetic expectations. The results can be transformative … enhancing a patient’s confidence and their ability to chew naturally as well as smile with confidence.

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