DENTAL IMPLANTS: 5 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW
Today, with all the advancements in modern technology and cosmetic dentistry, there are now alternatives to those removable dentures or fixed bridges that can cause a number of problems for their wearers. Those of us who have suffered through some of the challenges of eating or speaking, or having our removable dentures slip or click while eating now have other treatment options for missing teeth. Fixed bridges also have their challenges, since they can start negatively affecting adjacent teeth. Years ago, there would have been no other alternatives, but thankfully patients now have the choice of dental implants. Let us take a look at some of the most important basic information anyone considering receiving dental implants should know, including finding out more about how dental implants can enhance and improve one’s life.5 things you should know about dental implants:
- They are a permanent solution: Dental implants are designed to be long lasting replacements for damages or lost teeth. The implants are surgically placed in the jawbone by an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. The implants are composed of titanium metal and the goal of the implant is to “fuse” with the jawbone over time. Unlike dentures and fixed bridges that normally need to be replaced every 7-15 years, if taken care of properly, dental implants can last a lifetime. Implants never slip or make the embarrassing sounds that are sometimes associated with dentures. With the successful implantation, a patient never has to feel like he or she has “false teeth” again, and life can continue as it did prior to tooth loss.
- They consist of several parts: There are 3 parts that compose the anatomy of an implant. The first is the titanium implant, which is implanted and will fuse with the jawbone. The second is the portion of the implant that protrudes from the gum line called the abutment, and the third is the crown, which is fitted onto the abutment for the most natural appearance and is created by a restorative dentist or prosthodontist.
- They are better than bridges and dentures: There are several advantages that we have to mention when comparing dental implants to fixed bridges or dentures. Bridges will normally require the cutting down of surrounding healthy teeth, and the process may leave the patient vulnerable to having to restore other teeth in the future. In addition, a bridge wearer may have the expense of replacing his or her bridge more than once over the course of a lifetime. Similarly to bridges, removable partial dentures and conventional dentures may contribute to the loss of adjacent teeth as well, by contributing to bone loss. When a patient has missing teeth, the jaw’s bone may erode and weaken. Implants, on the other hand, will provide stability in this case just as the natural teeth did previously.
- They improve quality of life: Many people who have opted for dental implants are happy with the improved quality of life that dental implants offer. Patients with dental implants feel more secure and comfortable with their teeth. They enjoy eating more comfortably and avoid the day-to-day frustrations that can come from the discomfort of ill-fitting dentures or partials. Studies show a renewed self confidence and the ability to enjoy a variety of foods without the concern that some denture and partial wearers may encounter.
- Consult with a cosmetic dentist to see if dental implants are right for you: By seeking a consultation from your cosmetic dentist, you can get an expert opinion on how dental implants can enhance your life and if they are the right choice for you. Implants provide the best of modern technology and science, and if your cosmetic dentist feels it is a fitting option for you, they can walk you through the process of receiving dental implants. The cosmetic team will likely consist of the restorative dentist, who makes the crown for the implant, and the oral and maxillofacial surgeon, who will surgically place the implant. Whatever your age may be, with the exception of young and growing children, your team of dental professionals will work on a dental implant solution for you. With an overall success rate of approximately 95%, and many years of clinical research to back them up, dental implants are quite often the best treatment option for patients with missing teeth.