Standard dental implants can restore the function of missing teeth and preserve the jawbone. The three major components of implants closely mimic natural teeth and with proper care, these implants can last a lifetime, making them a popular choice among dentists and patients. Natural teeth are rigid, calcified structures that protrude past the gum line…
Should You Consider Getting Dental Implants?
If you have missing teeth, there are multiple replacement options from which you can choose. Dental implants are one, and they are a popular choice for various reasons. Although implants may be an effective treatment method, they are not for everyone. Therefore, you should consider the benefits and other information before making a decision.
Information about dental implants
The implant procedure consists of inserting rods into the jawbone and attaching tooth-colored crowns to the top. This method provides a variety of benefits over other replacement procedures.
Not everyone is a candidate
Dental implants are not recommended for every patient. Because the implants go into the bone and there is a long healing process, candidates have certain requirements. For example, an individual must have adequate jawbone density to insert the titanium rods.
A candidate must not have other underlying dental issues or health problems that interfere with healing. A good candidate should also have stellar oral hygiene habits and not be a smoker.
They provide a stable foundation
The insertion of dental implants into the jaw provides a stable and robust foundation for the crowns. This means that the patient can eat regular foods and speak normally. The teeth also do not slip around like some other replacement options.
They prevent bone loss
If teeth are not replaced, or there is no normal biting function, the jawbone begins to lose density. This has nasty consequences over the long run, including further teeth loss and changes in facial features such as sagging skin. Therefore, missing teeth should be replaced as soon as possible for the least amount of bone loss.
With the implants in the bone, the bone begins to grow around the rods. In addition, implants allow for normal and balanced biting forces, which further contribute to bone growth. As a result, there is no bone loss.
They can last a lifetime
Dental implants are a good investment. Unlike other methods, implants are designed to last a long time. With the proper care, most implants will never need replacement.
They are easy to care for
There is no need for unique cleaning products or a different routine with implants. They are brushed and flossed just like regular teeth. The crowns cannot decay like natural teeth, which means they will never develop cavities. However, it is still essential to visit the dentist regularly, as the gums are not indestructible. Professional cleanings and exams are still necessary to keep the gums and other soft tissues healthy.
The procedure is lengthy
It is important to understand that getting dental implants is not a quick process. The procedure requires multiple office visits with healing time between many of them. In addition, if a patient needs a tooth extraction or bone graft first, this adds more time to the total process. For the average patient, the total time between beginning and completion is between six and 13 months.
When considering implants, patients often have a variety of questions.
Is there anything to be done about decreased bone density?
If a person wants dental implants but does not have sufficient jawbone for the titanium rods, this does not necessarily mean this person is not eligible for the procedure. Depending on the situation, the dentist may recommend a bone graft. This consists of taking bone from elsewhere in the body or using synthetic material and adding it to the jaw. It takes additional time for the bones to fuse and strengthen, but then it is ready for the placement of implants.
What is the healing process like?
Many of the steps involved with dental implants require a healing period. In the initial periods, the gums may be tender. Pain medication or ice packs may be recommended to manage pain and swelling. The dentist will generally instruct the patient to stick with liquids and soft foods and limit chewing on the surgical areas for the first few days.
Once the permanent crowns are placed, the patient can resume normal activities right away. However, it may take a little while to get used to having a full mouth of teeth.
There are a lot of factors to look at if you are considering getting dental implants. Although there are numerous benefits, it takes a commitment and plenty of time to complete the entire process. Therefore, you should discuss both pros and cons with your dentist to see if it is a viable option for you.
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