What are Dental Implants?
A dental implant is an artificial tooth that a dentist places into your jaw to hold a replacement tooth or bridge. Dental implants are an ideal option for people in good general oral health who have lost a tooth or teeth due to gum disease, an injury or some other reason.
While high-tech in nature, dental implants are actually more tooth saving than traditional bridgework, since implants do not rely on neighbouring teeth for support.
Dental implants are so natural looking you may forget you ever lost a tooth. You know that your confidence about your teeth affects how you feel about yourself, both personally and professionally. Perhaps you hide your smile because of spaces from missing teeth; maybe your dentures don’t feel secure. Perhaps you have difficulty chewing. If you are missing one or more teeth and would like to smile, speak and eat again with comfort and confidence, there is good news!
Dental implants are teeth that can look and feel just like your own! Under proper conditions implants can last a lifetime. Long-term studies continue to show improving success rates for implants.
What Dental Implants can do?
- Replace one or more teeth without affecting adjacent teeth
- Support a bridge and eliminate the need for a removable partial denture
- Provide support for a denture, making it more secure and comfortable.
Overview of Dental Implants
Implants are surgically placed in your jawbone while under anaesthesia. It is a very time consuming procedure when having many implants placed. For some people there are varying degrees of discomfort or pain, which subsides in a couple of days. As with similar types of surgery, bruising and minor swelling might also develop shortly after the procedure.
How are Dental Implants attached in your Mouth?
The implant procedure is a surgical placement of the implant or implants into your jawbone, which requires a three to six month healing period before the implant restoration is placed to replace the missing tooth or teeth. During this healing time, the bone grows in and around the titanium implant creating a very strong support.
There is a small chance that dental implants can be rejected, if this happens they are usually replaced with another implant of slightly larger size. After the implant has “taken” and you have sufficiently healed, a very natural crown is placed on the implant.
If you’re missing one tooth or all of your teeth, implants may well be for you. So long as you have enough bone in the area of the missing tooth to facilitate the anchorage of the implants, this procedure can yield terrific results. If you do not have enough bone for this purpose, a bone graft may be necessary. A procedure of building up the bone is known as bone grafting. Bone grafting is common with dental implants. The preferred bone to use is taken from other areas of your mouth.
Advantages of Dental Implants
Every way you look at it, dental implants are a better solution to the problem of missing teeth. While dentures and removable bridges are usually loose and unstable, implants provide you with dental replacements that are both natural looking and very functional, Implants look much better, and feel better, that traditional removable bridges, and offer the same biting force as bridges that are fixed in place. Implants will last your lifetime.
Since dental implants integrate into the structure of your bone, they prevent the bone loss and gum recession that often accompany bridgework and dentures. No one will ever know that you have a replacement tooth.
Dental implants don’t sacrifice the quality of your adjacent teeth like a bridge does because neighbouring teeth are left untouched, a significant long-term benefit to your oral health.
Implants are a major investment and not without risk. It is also a very time consuming procedure when having many implants placed. There are varying degrees of discomfort and pain, which subsides in a couple of days.
Are you a candidate for Dental Implants?
The ideal candidate for a dental implant is in good general and oral health. Adequate bone in your jaw is needed to support the implant; the best candidates have healthy gum tissues that are free from periodontal disease.
General Facts about Dental Implants
Improved Comfort: Dental implants eliminate the pain and discomfort of removable full or partial dentures. Since dentures sit on top of the jawbone and gums, continuous shrinkage of the jawbone alters the fit of the denture resulting in slipping or rocking of the denture. Exposed nerves and irritation of the gum tissue may add to the discomfort. With dental implants gum irritation and the pain of exposed nerves associated with conventional full or partial dentures are eliminated.
Eat Better: The average denture patient with an excellent fitting denture eats at 15-20% efficiency when compared to a person with natural teeth. As the jawbone shrinks, your chewing efficiency is reduced even more, making it difficult to eat certain foods. Dental implants, on the other hand can restore chewing efficiency comparable to that of natural teeth. This allows you to eat your favourite foods with confidence and without pain.
A full upper denture covers the palate of the mouth and reduces the ability to taste foods. With dental implants, you can have the palate removed from your upper denture so you can taste and enjoy your food.
Improved Speech: With ill fitting dentures, the teeth slip and slide around the mouth. The facial muscles become tense in an attempted to hold the teeth in place. This often results in mumbling, slurred speech or clicking noises. Implant supported replacement teeth allow you to speak with confidence in a relaxed and natural tone.
Convenience: Dental implants can eliminate the numerous embarrassing inconveniences of removable partial and full dentures; you will eliminate the use of gooey denture adhesives that must be re-applied throughout the day.
Great Value: Although dental implant treatment may initially be more expensive than other treatment methods it often turns out to be the best investment for a long term perspective since most patients can expect them to last a life time. Other treatment methods like bridges and dentures often requires regular alterations and adjustments over time,