6 Important Facts to Know before Getting Dental Implants

69% of adults between the age of 35-44 have lost at least 1 permanent tooth. In the past, the option to treat tooth loss were only fixed dental bridges and removable dentures, which can be a pain to maintain and uncomfortable. This is why the invention of dental implant is so important in the world of oral healthcare.

What actually is a dental implant? What is the difference compared to a dental bridge or crown?

A dental implant, in a nutshell, is when an artificial “root”, commonly made of titanium metal, is implanted within your gums and placed around the jawbone. Over time, this metal implant will fuse with the gum tissues and the jawbone. This artificial root is then used to support a dental prosthesis – a crown, bridge, or denture which will replace the missing tooth.

It is important to note that the dental implant procedure is separated from the dental crown or bridge procedure, depending on your needs. However, in the case of a missing tooth where the root is also missing, the dental specialist might offer to do both treatments as one package.

With a dental implant method, we will get a virtually permanent solution, if not the only viable long-term tooth replacement option.

Still not sure if getting a dental implant is the right thing for you? Here are some important things you should know:

1. What Are The Different Types of Implants?

There are two different categories of dental implants, according to American Academy of Periodontology (AAP):

Endosteal Implant – This type of dental implant is typically made of titanium, shaped like a small screw. The dental implant is placed in the jawbone, and this is the most common type of dental implant.

Subperiosteal Implant – With this type, the implant is placed under the gum but above the jawbone. This type is generally used when a patient doesn’t have a strong enough or healthy enough jawbone, and for one reason or the other, a jawbone augmentation is not performed prior to the implant procedure.

Since jawbone strength is essential for endosteal jawbone, several techniques can be performed to restore the natural jawline, which can include:

Sinus lift – Adding bone below the sinus to elevate the sinus. This technique is commonly used on cases where missing upper back teeth has deteriorate the strength of the bone.

Bone Augmentation – Regenerating the bone in the jaw by using bone additives and growth factor, among other methods.

Ridge Expansion – Adding bone graft to the small ridge created along the top of jawline, this technique is used when your jaw isn’t wide enough to support the implant.

2. Implants Look and Feel The Same As Natural Teeth

Dental implants are designed to fit, feel, and look exactly like your natural teeth.

When the procedure is performed by a professional dental specialist, they will take extra care in taking impressions of your existing natural teeth and the jawbone in an attempt to create the perfect replica of the missing teeth.

Since the implant is fused to your bone, it will produce its natural feel, not to mention the strength.

3. Dental Implant Has a Very High Success Rate

The dental implant procedure might sound scary and complicated, but generally, dental implants have a success rate of around 95%, and is generally safe without severe risks of complications and side effects.

Success rate of the dental implant procedure might vary due to the case of each individual, the strength and health of the jawbone, and the expertise of the dental specialist. Choosing an experienced professional to carry the procedure is definitely a wise idea.

4. Is Getting a Dental Plant a Good Option For you?

There are three main factors to consider for this question: the health of your gums, whether you have enough bone (in quality and size) to support a dental implant, and whether you are in a good overall health condition.

As mentioned above, if your bone height or width is not adequate to support an implant, you might need a bone augmentation prior to the implant. Patients with chronic illnesses affecting wound recovery like diabetes or leukemia are not advised for this procedure, as these diseases can hinder the healing process.

5. Dental Implants Are Not Only About Cosmetic or Aesthetic

The natural feel and strength of dental implant means you are not only getting aesthetic benefits. Dental implants can produce a feel of natural bite force and sensitivity, enhancing the strength of your chew into its former glory.

So, you can eat all your favorite foods without any extra care or painful sensations.

On the other hand, implants will help protect the adjacent healthy teeth, ensuring the right balance. If you need a crown or bridge, it can be placed right on top of the dental implant without burdening the nearby teeth, which can hurt the adjacent teeth’s strength in the long run. So, your healthy teeth can stay healthy.

6. Replacing The Root Has Many Benefits

Dental implant is the only dental procedure to date to replace the root of your missing tooth. When you lose a tooth due to an impact, often the root is removed, creating a gap in your gum. This gap, besides impairing aesthetic and functional factors of the missing tooth, can affect the health of the surrounding teeth and gum tissue. This condition can also deteriorate jawbone density, mass, and strength in the long run.

Implants are designed to make contact with your jawbone, and so creating the sensation that an actual root is there. This encourages your body to grow new gum tissue to surround the artificial “root”, allowing healthy growth and natural bond.

End Words

A dental implant procedure is designed to replace the root of a missing tooth, where a crown or dental bridge can be placed on top of it. Dental implants can be a significant investment, but is a long-term solution for a missing tooth (and root) not only for cosmetic reasons, but alto to maintain and restore the health of your jawbone,gum tissue, and adjacent teeth.

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