Over time you may lose one or several teeth for reasons besides age. Untreated decay, injuries, and gum disease could also be reasons for tooth loss. You may already know that a lack of teeth can be problematic, but it doesn't stop there.
Dental implants are a way to replace these teeth and maintain your quality of life. At Liberty Family Dentistry, our advanced dental professionals have the experience and education to determine if dental implants are right for you, and to place them with precision. Here's why dental implants should be your first choice when considering tooth replacement.
The Basics of Dental Implants
Dental implants are a way to replace teeth without affecting adjacent teeth. This is unlike dentures, which can cause misalignment of the mouth and irritation. Dental implants replace the root of the tooth with an artificial one. A dental implant is often made out of metallic materials such as titanium.
Your dentist will surgically place this metal root into the jawbone. Once it's inserted, the dentist will attach a crown over the top of it to give it its unique appearance just like natural teeth.
A dental implant is a strong and sturdy tooth replacement. It can even last for several decades. When you consider that your teeth will only be replaced once throughout your lifetime, dental implants are a solid choice.
Dental Implants for the Long Term
Many studies have shown that dental implants can significantly improve your overall quality of life. This is because dental implants look and feel just like natural teeth, so you can eat whatever you want without worrying about them.
Why Replace Missing Teeth
You may ask yourself, " Why should I replace one or a few missing teeth?". Losing teeth creates more problems than the inconvenience of not being able to chew your favorite foods.
If you lose too many teeth, your jawbone will start to deteriorate. This can have a negative impact on the way your face looks and your ability to speak. Missing teeth also cause the surrounding ones to shift. This leads to other issues like jaw pain, headaches, and TMJ.
Dental implants can help stimulate the jawbone and make it thicker and stronger, which can prevent further bone loss. To prevent further tooth loss and associated complications, you should explore your long-term tooth replacement options with a dentist.
Full Mouth Dental Implants
The most conservative treatment option for replacing all of your teeth is known as a full-mouth dental implant. This treatment option is also the most affordable in the long run because you don't have to deal with back-n-forth replacement or treatment of individual teeth.
Although more than one tooth may be extracted during the procedure, this type of implant will allow you to eat whatever you want without any discomfort or pain. Full mouth dental implants can also help your jawbone stay healthy. This means you will be able to speak clearly with no slurring of words. Say goodbye to dentures.
Top Dental Implant Advantages
Here are just a few reasons why dental implants should be your first choice for tooth replacement:
- These implants work like natural teeth
- You won't need to take special precautions with them
- Comfortable to eat with
- Easy for people to understand when you talk.
- Last for several decades.
- Attractive and look great if you want to accentuate your smile
- Minimal effect on surrounding teeth
- Improves your self-esteem
- Improves overall quality of life tremendously
- Maintain a white smile
- Don't have to remove it at night
While the overall costs of dental implants are higher than other types of tooth replacements, you should consider dental implants as an investment in your oral health. You'll be able to enjoy a set of natural-looking teeth that look good and work great for decades, which is something you can't do with dentures.
What Is the Procedure?
Before your dentist starts any dental implant procedure, you have to get clearance. It is major oral surgery, so your dentist will conduct X-rays and examine your jawbone to determine whether your mouth is healthy enough for the oral surgery.
Once your dentist's office approves you for surgery, the whole process will take several months. Why does it take so long? When dentists insert implants into the jawbone, the bone undergoes a process called osseointegration.
The implant fuses with the surrounding bones, so it gets harder and stronger over time. Once your dentist is ready to attach the dental crown, they may have to make an incision to either expose your gum tissue or remove some of it.
The implant procedure can take one to two hours, depending on how many teeth you need replacing. The dentist will use local or general anesthesia, so there’s minimal pain involved.
Afterward, you will receive dental crowns made in a dental lab.
During the tooth replacement process, your dentist will give you temporary teeth - crowns, so you can eat and speak normally. You get the permanent ones after the healing process is complete, usually six to eight weeks after the surgery. In some cases, it may take several more months.
Expect follow-up visits during this time to monitor the progress of the dental implant healing.
After Dental Implants
Once your implants have healed and you get your permanent crowns, you can show off your new smile and eat in peace. However, don't think you will never have to see your dentist again.
Dental implants require regular visits every six months, just like natural teeth. Gum health is still a concern when you have dental implants. So brush, floss, and get regular cleanings to avoid gum disease.
Dental implants are an investment in your oral health, but they can go a long way towards improving your life. You will have the ability to eat what you want with no risk of wearing out your dentures or losing your teeth. You can also enjoy great self-esteem and overall quality of life. To see if dental implants are the right fit for you, contact our team to set up a consultation, or learn more about our process for dental implants.