If you lost a tooth or are missing teeth, you may be considering dental implants as an option for tooth replacement. Dental implants are the preferred teeth replacement option for many people, but it may not be the appropriate treatment for everyone.
In this blog post, we’ll discuss what you need to know about dental implants before making a decision. Keep reading to learn more.
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are a tooth replacement option for people who have lost a natural tooth or teeth due to injury, disease, or decay. They are surgically implanted in the jawbone and consist of three parts: the titanium post, the abutment, and the dental crown.
The titanium post is surgically embedded in the jawbone, where it will fuse with the bone over time, acting as an artificial tooth root and providing a strong foundation for the dental prosthesis. The abutment is placed on top of the metal post to serve as a connector, and the dental crown, dental bridge, or denture is placed on top of the abutment.
The dental implant mimics a natural tooth root. This option can give you back your smile and improve your oral health.
Who Needs Dental Implants?
In recent years, dental implants have gained popularity as a way to replace missing teeth. They offer many benefits over traditional dental prosthetics and can be a wise choice for people who are missing one or more teeth. But who exactly needs dental implants?
In general, good candidates for dental implants are people who are missing one or more teeth and who have healthy gum and bone tissues. Furthermore, dental implants can be used to support dental bridges and dentures, making them a good option for people with extensive tooth loss.
Consult your dentist to determine whether dental implants are right for you.
What Are The Benefits Of Dental Implants?
Dental implants offer many benefits over other methods like dental bridges and dentures. Some of these benefits are:
- Dental implants look and feel much more like natural teeth than either dental bridges or dentures. This can help you feel more confident about your appearance.
- Because dental implants are surgically embedded into the jawbone, they provide more stability and support than either dental bridges or dentures.
- Dental implants help to preserve the surrounding teeth by taking on the force of the bite rather than distributing that force across multiple teeth as dental bridges do.
- They can help improve your oral health by preventing bone loss and stimulating bone growth in the jaw, thereby preserving the shape of the face and keeping your existing healthy teeth from shifting out of place.
- Dental implants don’t require special care beyond regular brushing and flossing; there’s no need to remove them for cleaning or worry about them becoming loose or coming out.
These factors make dental implants the preferred tooth replacement option for many people.
How Many Types Of Dental Implants Are Available?
There are four main types of dental implants available: single-tooth dental implants, implant-supported bridges, implant-supported dentures, and All-on-4 dental implants.
- Single-tooth implants:
These are used to replace one missing tooth. The tooth implant is placed in the bone, and an artificial tooth is attached to it. This option looks and functions just like a real tooth.
- Implant-supported bridges:
These are used when there are multiple missing teeth in a row. The bridge is attached to dental implants that are placed in the bone. This option is strong and stable and looks and functions like natural teeth.
- Implant-supported dentures:
These are used when all of the teeth in the upper or lower jaw need to be replaced. The denture is attached to dental implants that are placed in the bone. This option is much more stable than traditional dentures and lets you eat and speak confidently.
- All-on-4 dental implants:
These are a convenient tooth replacement option for people who need all of their teeth replaced in either the upper or lower jaw. Four dental implants are placed in the bone, and a full set of artificial teeth is attached to them. This option gives you a natural-looking and functioning smile.
How Long Can Dental Implants Last?
Dental implants are made to last for a long time – but just how long can dental implants last?
On average, dental implants have a lifespan of about 25 years. However, several factors can affect a dental implant’s longevity, including the implant’s quality, the dental surgeon’s skill, and the patient’s oral hygiene habits. With proper care, some teeth implants have been known to last for over 30 years.
While dental implants are designed to be long-lasting, it’s important to remember that they are not permanent. Factors such as wear and tear, changes in the jawbone, and gum disease (periodontal disease) can all contribute to the need for a new dental implant.
What Are The Steps Of Dental Implant Treatment?
The dental implant process can be divided into five main steps: initial consultation and preparation, implant installation, osseointegration, abutment placement, and dental prosthesis placement.
Step 1: Initial Consultation and Preparation
The tooth implant procedure starts with an initial consultation. During this step, your dentist will ask about your medical history and assess your mouth. Your dentist will develop a dental treatment plan based on your needs. This may involve extractions or bone grafting to ensure that there is sufficient support for the implant. In some cases, a sinus lift may also be necessary.
Step 2: Implant Installation
Once everything has been prepared, the next step is to install the implant itself. This is typically done through a minimally invasive surgery, in which a small titanium screw is placed into the jawbone.
Step 3: Osseointegration
After the implant has been installed, it will need to undergo a process of osseointegration so it can fuse with the surrounding bone tissue. This usually takes a few months to complete.
Step 4: Abutment Placement
Once osseointegration is finished, an abutment can be placed on top of the implant. This serves as a connector between the implant and the dental prosthesis (e.g., denture or implant crown).
Step 5: Dental Prosthesis Placement
Finally, the dental prosthesis is placed on top of the abutment. This completes the dental implant treatment process and gives you a natural-looking and functional replacement for your missing tooth/teeth.
Once the implant has been placed in the jawbone, it will take some time to heal after the dental procedure. During this healing period, taking good care of your oral health is important.
Here are some helpful tips to speed up the healing process and have a successful recovery:
- Do brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily. This will help keep the area around the implant clean and free of bacteria.
- Do eat healthy foods and drink plenty of water. This will help your body heal quickly and reduce the risk of infection.
- Do follow your dentist’s instructions for proper oral care and on how to care for your dental implant.
- Don’t smoke. Smoking can delay healing and increase the risk of infection.
- Don’t eat hard or crunchy foods for at least two weeks after dental implant surgery. These can damage the implant or cause it to become loose. Stick to soft food until your dentist says it’s safe to resume your normal diet.
- Don’t neglect your oral hygiene during this time. Good dental care means brushing and flossing carefully to avoid irritating the surgical site.
Following these tips can help you have a successful healing process and minimise any discomfort during recovery.
Dental implants are a well-known tooth replacement option that has been used for over 30 years. The surgery is simple and straightforward, and the dental implants are very beneficial. Aside from improving your smile, they can help preserve oral and dental health by preventing gum recession and bone loss.
However, dental implant surgery is not recommended for everyone, and it is important to consult a dental professional to see if dental implants are good for you.
If you’re considering getting dental implants, book a consultation appointment through our website or call our dental clinics at Yokine or Maddington today! The dental professionals at Clear Choice Dental would be happy to answer any of your questions about the dental implant procedure and how it could benefit you.
Thank you for reading, and we hope this article has helped you to understand dental implants better as you go through your implant journey.
Frequently Asked Questions
Dental implants are made of the following materials:
This is the most common type of material used in dental implants. They are strong and durable and can last a lifetime with proper care. Titanium dental implants are also less likely to cause allergic reactions than other types of dental implants.
These dental implants are made of a white ceramic material nearly as strong as titanium. They are less visible than titanium dental implants, making them a good choice for people who do not want their dental implants to be noticeable.
These implants are made of a white material that is harder than tooth enamel. They are less likely to break than other types of dental implants. However, they may not be as strong as titanium or zirconia dental implants.
These implants are made of a flexible plastic material that can be used in dental patients with very soft bones. Polymer dental implants are not as strong as other types of dental implants, and they may not last as long.
The cost of dental implants can differ depending on several factors, including the location of the tooth being replaced, the type of implant, the need for additional surgery, and the complexity of the procedure. On average, a dental implant costs between \$3,000 and \$6,000.
Dental implants are often seen as a more long-term investment than other tooth replacement options because implants are designed to last for longer years with proper care. For many people, this makes them worth the initial investment.
The level of pain you experience during and after a dental implant procedure will depend on many individual factors, such as your pain tolerance and the type of anesthesia used. In general, however, most people report feeling only minor discomfort during the procedure because the oral surgeon numbs the area using local anesthesia.
After the procedure, you may experience some mild soreness or swelling in the affected area. These side effects can be effectively managed with over-the-counter pain medication. However, remember that the healing time and recovery process vary from patient to patient.
Sometimes, a dental implant can be placed without needing a bone graft. However, it depends on the condition of your jaw bone. If you have insufficient bone density in the area where the implant will be placed, your dentist may recommend bone grafting prior to dental implant surgery.
Bone grafting is a relatively common and low-risk procedure that helps promote a successful implant placement.