Everything You Wanted to Know About Dental Implants
Even though this generation will be the first in which most people will actually keep their natural teeth throughout their lifetimes, there are a lot of people out there who still have to deal with missing teeth.
Whether this is through an accident that damaged the teeth or poor oral hygiene and the onset of periodontal disease, the result is the same: a gap that causes difficulties speaking and eating.
And that’s just for starters. Missing teeth can actually lead to more significant health problems down the road.
So, let’s take a closer look at the most common solution for missing teeth: dental implants.
What are the Benefits of Dental Implants?
There are several reasons why implants have become the go-to solution for missing teeth.
- Restore functionality – This simple procedure helps to restore your ability to speak and eat normally.
- Durability and strength – Implants can last for years, if not decades, and the titanium root sits securely in the jawbone.
- Maintain your dental health – Any gaps in your teeth make it easier for bacteria to settle in. Your remaining teeth can also start to shift position, and you could even experience some bone deterioration.
- Build confidence – When you feel like you have to hide your smile, it can impact your self-confidence. Smiling has a psychological and physiological impact, so you should always feel like you can share your smile.
These implants look and feel natural in your mouth, and because they are so strong and durable, you can still enjoy the same foods you always have. You can even brush and floss them normally, so normal dental hygiene routines don’t have to change at all.
How Implants Work
A dental implant is composed of three components: the titanium root, the abutment, and the crown.
The titanium is a critical material for dental implants to work effectively. This metal has a high strength-to-weight ratio, won’t corrode, and is completely biocompatible (which means your body won’t reject it).
On top of all that is a process called osseointegration. This is basically a large word that means the bone in your jaw will actually fuse to the titanium, creating a bond that is extremely strong – at least as strong as the bond to your natural roots. (Which is also why titanium is used for all-on-4 dentures, too.)
This titanium root is then topped with an abutment – the connector that will be used to secure the crown.
And speaking of the crown, this is a specially designed and constructed prosthetic that will fit perfectly in your mouth. (And with CEREC technology, we can create these restorations while you’re still in the office for your appointment.)
Are You a Candidate for an Implant?
Generally speaking, if you’re healthy enough to receive any other major or semi-major dental procedure, then you’re probably okay to have an implant. The main qualification is whether or not you have enough jaw bone to hold the implant in place.
Even then, there is the option of bone grafts, so if you’re missing a tooth, come in and see us as soon as possible.
Of course, there are a few situations which might affect the way we approach the procedure. And there are some circumstances that may have to be corrected before we can provide an implant. This includes any uncontrolled chronic conditions like heart problems or diabetes. If you’re receiving radiation treatments in the head or neck area, we’ll definitely want to know about that, too.
The Faster the Better
The sooner you replace your missing teeth, the more likely you will be able to maintain your dental and overall health.
So, whether you’ve lost a tooth to trauma or decay, contact us as soon as you can to learn about your options for replacements.