Dental Implants: Words to Know

Every profession has specialized vocabulary words, and the dental profession is no different. You have probably already realized the preventive oral care means brushing your teeth (among other things!) If you are considering the restorative procedure of having a dental implant, it helps to know the specialized vocabulary connected with that procedure. Dental implants can improve both the look and function of your smile. A tooth may seem like a small thing, but a dental implant can make a big difference in both mouth and jaw comfort and in confidence.


An implant is securely anchored in the jaw by the process of osseointegration. This is the 2-6 month process where cells in your jawbone integrate with the titanium implant post, forming a permanent bond.

Abutment (in the Context of a Dental Implant)

A dental implant consists of three parts: the post (which is implanted in the jaw), the abutment (which is attached atop the post, once osseointegration has taken place) and the crown (the artificial tooth, which shows above the gum line.) There are other times your dentists may refer to an abutment (for example, an abutment tooth, for a restorative dental bridge.)  If you are ever unsure, please ask. We are always glad to share our vocabulary.


Maxicillofacial refers to anything relating to the jaw and face. A oral and maxillofacial surgeon is a specialist in diagnosing and treating problems in these face and neck areas. Placing dental implants is one of the things that a maxillofacial specialist is highly qualified to do.


Combining experience in oral and maxillofacial surgery with a genuine care for their patients’ health and comfort, the team at Santa Rosa and Rohnert Park Oral Surgery is ready to improve the health and beauty of smiles in the Sonoma County and North Bay area. To schedule a consultation, contact our office by calling 707-545-4625 (Santa Rosa) or 707-584-1630 (Rohnert Park).