When Do I Need Dental Implants?

posted in: Restorative Dentistry | 0

When you are faced with a missing tooth, there are a few options you can consider to restore your smile. Modern dental prosthetics offer a variety of viable solutions for people, regardless of their age and budget.

Many people choose dental implants because they provide a high-quality, lasting solution to missing teeth. No more embarrassment. Never worry about it again. You will achieve a beautiful, top of the line result and care-free function for the rest of your life!

woman with dental implants.jpeg

What is a Dental Implant?

A dental implant is a “root” replacement, usually made of titanium that is surgically placed below the gums into the jawbone. The implant is carefully and skillfully placed into the jaw where the natural root would have been. It is then left to integrate with the jawbone.

Once integrated, a crown, bridge, or denture is fixed onto the implant. Because the implant fuses to your bone, dental implant restorations feel and function more like natural teeth. Some people also find the secure fit more comfortable than conventional substitutes, such as a bridge or dentures.

When are Dental Implants Used?

Dental implants can be used to:

  • Replace a single missing tooth
  • Replace several missing teeth using a bridge
  • Replace all the teeth using bridges or implant-supported dentures

I have dentures, but I’m not happy with them. Am I eligible for dental implants?

Yes! Many people who have dentures decide to make the switch to dental implants. There are many good reasons to make this switch.

If you currently have dentures, you may experience difficulties as dentures become looser over the course of the day. It may be especially difficult to eat or speak normally. 

Since dentures are often loosely fitted, it’s also easier for infection to develop around their edges. In contrast, dental implants are adhered firmly to the jawbone using a screw-like support. Dental implants are characterized by a tight, natural fit that decreases the risk of buildup and infection between the gum and the replacement crown (the visible part of your dental implant). In addition, since dental implants are made of titanium, they can never get dental decay!

Finally, since dentures are removable and don’t add any permanent structure to your teeth, you may experience bone loss. Over time, you will need to refit or replace your dentures to accommodate your changing mouth structure. Bone loss may also cause you to develop a caved-in look around your teeth.

How do I care for dental implants?

Committing to implants also means making a commitment to oral hygiene to care for your new smile. You care for an implant the same way you care for your regular teeth – brushing and flossing every day. Also keep in mind that certain habits like smoking or having certain health issues such as diabetes can sometimes decrease the chance that a dental implant procedure will be successful.

If you take good care of your dental implants, they could last for many, many years. In contrast, dentures typically need to be replaced every ten or even as often as every five years.

Am I a candidate for dental implants?

To get dental implants, there are certain health requirements you must meet. If you have thin bone, you are still a candidate for dental implants, but may possibly need a bone graft. You must also have healthy gum tissue.

Dental implants offer a revolutionary alternative to dentures and other removable dental solutions. They place a beautiful, natural-looking crown over a permanent anchor to eliminate an unsightly gap or a missing tooth.

Dental implants are just one cosmetic procedure that can enhance your smile. Check out our guide to cosmetic dentistry to learn more about your options.