If you have noticed that one or more of your teeth are missing, there are a number of ways to replace them. You might have heard of one of them already, but it’s an alternative to bridges, partials or complete dentures, and is known as dental implants. Implants are used to replace missing roots and support artificial replacement teeth. Not only are they comfortable, but they also look like natural teeth. If you’re considering dental implants, here is some information that can be of use.
What are dental implants?
A dental implant is an artificial root that is made from titanium metal. A replacement tooth is also attached to the implant. In order to replace the root of the natural tooth, the implant is inserted into the jawbone, and holds the replacement artificial tooth in place.
Who can get dental implants?
If you have good health, healthy gums and sufficient bone in the jaw for holding an implant, then you’re in luck – because you’re a potential candidate for dental implants. However, if your jawbone has shrunk or didn’t develop normally, you can have a bone graft done to add new bone to your jawbone. Your dentist or dental specialist will be the one to let you know if it can be done.
What is the procedure like?
If you are planning on having an implant done, your dentist might refer you to a dental specialist who has more training and expertise within that area. Those who specialize in implants are known as oral surgeons. They are also referred to as periodontists or oral and maxillofacial surgeons.
At the beginning of your first session, your dentist or specialist will examine your mouth before taking x-rays of your head, jaw and teeth to determine if you are the right fit for dental implants. During the first stage of the actual surgery, your dentist will put a dental implant into your jawbone. The titanium from the implant will fuse with your jawbone, therefore, preventing it from slipping or making noise or causing bone damage. The implant will also be done beneath the gum tissue, which is later stitched back into place. While the tissue is healing, the implant will then bond with the bone and, as a result, it can attach itself to the gum. It can take as long as several months to fully heal from the procedure.
In the second stage, the tissue would have already finished healing. Your dentist will then attach an abutment to the implant, which is used to connect the replacement tooth to the implant. After the artificial replacement tooth has been made, your dentist will attach it to the abutment. However, it may take several appointments to properly fit it. When replacing your teeth, a fixed bridge will be anchored to your dental implants. A bridge replaces missing teeth by spanning over the area that has no teeth. The bridge is also held firmly by dental implants on each side of the missing tooth or teeth.
You might need to take several visits to your dentist or specialist until the procedure is done. Your appointments should be scheduled throughout the year, in order to help your dentist understand if the implants are performing effectively.
How can I take care of my dental implant(s)?
Since dental implants are placed in the jawbone, the artificial replacement teeth attached to implants both look and function in a similar way as natural teeth. Just like natural teeth, implants need to be taken care of, by being cleaned with a toothbrush and floss. Your dentist will show you how to properly clean and take care of your implants. It’s also crucial to have regular dental checkups so that your dentist can see if your bite is right and that your implants are not loose.
Dental implants are definitely a great option to consider if you would like to fill in any missing teeth. It has a success rate of up to 98%, and provides many benefits, including improving the look and feel of your teeth, making it easier to eat, and bettering overall oral health. Before taking any further action, make sure to consult with your dentist first for more information.
Afsara Tasnim is a content writer for BreezeMaxWeb, who helps businesses grow their online presence through creating engaging copy. During her spare time, she enjoys taking photographs of nature and exploring the outdoors.