Implants are an attractive option for people with missing or failing teeth
What are Implants?
Dental implants are often the best treatment for missing teeth. When a damaged or decayed tooth is removed, both the visible part of the tooth (called the crown) and the root are lost. An implant is placed in the jawbone so that it can fuse with your natural bone and become a strong and sturdy foundation for replacement teeth. There are three parts to replacing teeth and consist of the implant, usually made out of titanium; the abutment, which is a connector to the implant; and the crown, which is the replacement tooth.
There are many different types of implants available and can be used to replace an individual tooth, for an implant-supported bridge or denture containing multiple teeth, or a complete new smile. Sometimes it is also necessary to build the missing bone through grafting, but new technology allows dentists to avoid grafting in many instances.
Dental implants are the closest you can get to healthy, natural teeth. People who have dental implants are able to eat confidently, smile and laugh, enjoy the foods they love, and participate in activities they might have otherwise avoided.
Benefits of Implants
Dental implants are often the first choice for replacing failing or missing teeth for several reasons, all of which greatly improve your quality of life! Implants are the next best thing to healthy, natural teeth as they look, feel, fit and function like a normal tooth. Other options can lead to bone deterioration and may interfere with eating, smiling, speaking and other everyday activities.
Implants are also built to last and offer a long-term solution when compared to dental bridges. While dental implants may need periodic adjustments, they can last a lifetime when properly placed and cared for over time. Additionally, dental implants allow you to keep your teeth where they belong – in your mouth! You no longer have to worry about losing or breaking your denture, and you can bite naturally, allowing you to eat your favorite foods without cause for concern.
Another benefit is that implants also help to protect healthy bone. Leaving empty spaces in your mouth after losing one or more teeth can lead to additional health issues, such as the loss and deterioration of some of your jawbone. When the jawbone is not being used to support a natural tooth, the jawbone deteriorates, losing strength and firmness, and this cannot be reversed. Dental implants are the only dental restoration option that preserves and stimulates natural bone and helps to prevent bone loss. Implants also help to protect your natural teeth because they prevent the healthy, adjacent teeth from shifting as they would if an empty space were left for an extended period of time.
Are implants right for you?
If you have at least one tooth that is missing or failing, implants might be an attractive option for you! Not everyone is a candidate for implants but most people are who have good health and whose jaw has finished growing are able to get implants, regardless if they were simply born without teeth or lost teeth due to decay, injury, gum (periodontal) disease, infection or other reasons. Dental implants are also a great option for people who don’t want the drawbacks of, or who can no longer wear, removable dentures. The best and easiest way to determine if you’re a candidate is to make an appointment with a dental implant expert and he/she can review all options with you and help you work toward smiling happy again!