Losing one or more permanent teeth can greatly impact your oral health, function, and self-confidence. Modern dental implants offer an excellent long-term solution for tooth replacement. Continue reading to learn why more patients are opting for implants over conventional tooth replacements.
Overview of Tooth Replacement Options
When you lose a permanent tooth, you have three main options:
Dentures – Removable prosthetics that replace some or all teeth. Dentures sit on top of the gums and can be taken out. Partial dentures replace some missing teeth while full dentures replace all teeth.
Dental Bridges – Non-removable prosthetics that anchor artificial teeth to natural teeth on either side of the gap left by the missing tooth. Bridges are cemented in place.
Dental Implants – Titanium posts surgically implanted into the jawbone that fuse with your bone over time. Custom crowns attached to the implants replicate natural tooth roots and appearance.
Why Dental Implants Are Often the Best Choice
While all tooth replacement options have pros and cons, dental implants provide some significant advantages that make them often the best choice.
First, implants are incredibly durable and built to last decades with proper care, versus needing replacement every 5-15 years like bridges and dentures. Implants also fuse to the jawbone rather than sit on top, which prevents bone loss that occurs when teeth are missing. This bone preservation helps maintain the natural facial structure.
In addition, custom crowns attached to the implants are crafted to closely match surrounding teeth for a natural look and feel, unlike more artificial-looking bridges and dentures. Implants also enable natural chewing capacity and bite force, compared to limitations with removable dentures.
Finally, bridges require grinding down adjacent healthy teeth, while implants integrate without altering neighboring teeth due to their minimally invasive placement.
The Dental Implant Procedure
Getting implants involves multiple steps over several months:
- A small titanium post is surgically inserted into the jawbone, beginning the fusion process through osseointegration.
- After several months of healing, an abutment is attached to the implant. This serves as the new tooth root.
- A custom crown is placed on the abutment to match the color, shape and contour of surrounding teeth.
Assessing a candidate’s eligibility
Determining if a patient is a good candidate for dental implants is an important part of the process. The dentist will carefully evaluate several factors to assess the patient’s eligibility.
First, the dentist examines the density, volume and structure of the jawbone using x-rays or CT scans. Adequate bone mass and quality is required to support the titanium implant posts. Second, the patient’s overall oral health status is assessed. Any issues like untreated tooth decay, gum disease or other infections must be addressed first before implants can be placed. Third, the dentist discusses the patient’s commitment to diligent implant care. Meticulous daily brushing and flossing and regular professional cleanings are essential for the long-term success of implants. Additionally, lifestyle factors are considered, as smoking or excessive alcohol use can impede the implant fusion process and lower success rates. Patients should discuss any potential risk factors openly with their dentist.
Together, the dentist and patient can determine if dental implants are the right treatment option based on the patient’s unique clinical scenario, health status, and willingness to follow all required care protocols. Addressing any potential issues upfront ensures the best outcome from the implant procedure.
Dental implants offer significant advantages over conventional tooth replacement options for many patients needing to replace missing teeth. With their durability, natural aesthetics, and bone preserving abilities, implants provide an excellent long-term solution that can restore dental function and confidence. By consulting with your dentist and carefully evaluating factors like oral health status and commitment to diligent care, implants may be the optimal choice for tooth replacement.
Transform Your Smile with Implants
If you are considering dental implants to replace missing teeth, schedule a consultation with Grand Bend Family Dental. Our experienced dentists can evaluate if you are a candidate for durable, natural-looking implants to restore your smile.
Contact us today to learn more about achieving an attractive, functional smile with dental implants from a trusted Grand Bend dentist.