Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 32 Page 33 Page 34 Page 35 Page 36 Page 37 Page 38 Page 39 Page 40 Page 41 Page 42 Page 43 Page 44 Page 45 Page 46 Page 47 Page 48 Page 49 Page 50 Page 51 Page 52 Page 53 Page 54 Page 55 Page 56 Page 57 Page 58 Page 59 Page 60 Page 61 Page 62 Page 63 Page 64 Page 65 Page 66 Page 67 Page 68 Page 69 Page 70 Page 71 Page 72 Page 73 Page 74 Page 75 Page 76 Page 77 Page 78 Page 79 Page 80 Page 81 Page 82 Page 83 Page 84 Page 85 Page 86 Page 87 Page 88 Page 89 Page 90 Page 91 Page 92 Page 93 Page 94 Page 95 Page 96 Page 97 Page 98 Page 99 Page 100 Page 101 Page 102 Page 103 Page 104 Page 105 Page 106 Page 107 Page 108 Page 109 Page 110 Page 111 Page 112 Page 113 Page 114 Page 115 Page 116 Page 117 Page 118 Page 119 Page 120 Page 121 Page 122 Page 123 Page 124 Page 125 Page 126 Page 127 Page 128 Page 129 Page 130 Page 131 Page 132 Page 133 Page 134 Page 135 Page 136 Page 137 Page 138 Page 139 Page 140 Page 141 Page 142 Page 143 Page 144 Page 145 Page 146 Page 147 Page 14832 Chester County Life / CHESTERCOUNTY-LIFE.COM D E N TA L C A R E BY APRIL O’DAY More than 35 million Americans have no teeth! Another 178 million are walk- ing around with at least one missing tooth. These statistics from the American Academy of Implant Dentistry and the American Col- lege of Prosthodontists are shocking. In a country where outstanding dental care pre- vails one wonders the causes of this alarm- ing data. To investigate, Chester County Life vis- ited Jason Petkevis, DMD, who owns Dental Distinction, a complete care practice. “There are a number of reasons why people lose teeth,” he suggests. “Decay, disease, injury, or other medical issues can be factors. Once teeth are gone, talking, eating, and swallow- ing are adversely affected. Appearance is fre- quently altered and self-esteem suffers.” As a solution to these physical and aes- thetic obstacles, more individuals of all ages are choosing dental implants. A dental im- plant is a titanium post, which is surgically placed in the jawbone to serve as a substi- tute for the tooth’s natural root. The pro- cedure, which is performed at Dental Dis- tinction, takes about an hour. “The implant mimics the patient’s root that was originally in the bone,” points out Dr. Petkevis. As the implant fuses with bone, a strong founda- tion is formed to support a replacement tooth, bridge, or denture. After about three or more months fol- lowing the dental implant placement, a crown, bridge, or denture is attached to replace the missing teeth. In cases where there is not sufficient bone to support den- tal implants, Dr. Petkevis can place a graft to rebuild the bone. There are a variety of methods for placing a crown or bridge on the implant. VERSATILITY OF IMPLANTS Dental implants can be utilized in several ways in addition to replacing missing teeth. Tooth replacement with an implant is a common occurrence where one implant can seamlessly mimic a missing natural tooth. In other instances, implants can serve as a support to help achieve stability for a full or partial denture. And, implant crowns could be used as substitutes for dentures. In this situation, a prosthetic remains in the mouth and is a life-changing solution to many who wear removable dentures. Before recommending implants, Dr. Pet- kevis performs a thorough customized ex- amination. “We check health history and the status of oral conditions, such as peri- odontal disease. We determine if the gums are healthy and explore aesthetic objectives. Overall function is the most important con- sideration for me. How is the bite? Are there TMJ (temporomandibular joint) factors jeopardizing implant possibility? When our preliminary research is complete, we find there are very few patients who are not ex- cellent implant candidates.” Implants Can Enrich Lives Dental implants can be utilized in several ways in addition to replacing missing teeth. A dental implant is a titanium post, which is surgically placed in the jawbone to serve as a substitute for the tooth’s natural root. As the implant fuses with bone, a strong foundation is formed to support a replacement tooth, bridge, or denture. Before recommending implants, Dr. Petkevis performs a thorough customized examination.