It used be the case that if you lost a tooth you would have to visit your dentist to get a set of dentures made to fit your mouth, but improvements in medical science have brought the practice of dental implants as an affordable alternative.
Dental implants are replaceable tooth roots, which provide a strong foundation for permanent or replaceable teeth which improve functionality and aesthetics. Dental implants are different from dentures because they look and feel like your own teeth. They are designed to fuse with your jaw bone, making them functionally permanent.
Dental implants can be helpful for individuals with speech impediments caused by poor fitting dentures.
How Do Dental Implants Work?
When a patient loses a tooth, bone loss begins taking place immediately because the root is no longer stimulating and stabilizing the bone. Dentists use titanium, which biochemically joins to bone, to replace tooth roots which replicate your natural roots.
There are typically three stages when placing dental implants within a mouth. The first stage consists of surgically burying the implant beneath the gum so that it is flush with the jaw bone. After a short recovery period a surgeon will check the implant to confirm successful integration to the bone then connect a post, resembling a screw, which penetrates the gum into the mouth.
Finally, the gum is allowed some time to heal and the prosthetic teeth are placed on the abutment.
How successful are Dental Implants?
Dental implants have a success rate of 98% and with proper home care can last a lifetime. There are some extenuating factors that could hinder the proper assimilation of implants into the mouth. Individuals who smoke or have undergone radiation therapy should consult with their dentist to develop a timeline that is both safe and productive.