Ever since their invention in the Sixties, dental implants have changed countless smiles. Thus far, it is considered the crème de la crème of tooth replacement. What other option promises to replace the entire tooth, from the root to the crown? This is why this is the top choice within restorative dentistry when it comes to getting your smile to its former glory.
Missing teeth are not only bad for your dental aesthetics but also your oral health. This is because there is the chance that other teeth may begin to shift, your jawbone will start to deteriorate, your enunciation will change, and the list goes on. But with dental implants, you can bid farewell to all these issues.
So, if you are considering going for this option, here are some things that you need to know to make an informed decision.
We know that tooth implants are often referred to as tooth replacements. However, they are root replacements. This feature alone is enough to make them sit above the other tooth replacement options.
Mostly, tooth implants are made from titanium, and they are the size of your tooth roots. Titanium has been the choice material since it is a biocompatible material. This means it can be introduced into your body and fuse well with your body tissue without causing toxicity. Hence the reason why titanium is used in orthopedics.
The tooth implant is surgically inserted into your jawbone. Your jawbone will be given some months to heal, and then the titanium rod would have fused with your jawbone, a process referred to as osseointegration. In simple words, the titanium rod permanently becomes a part of your jawbone.
When the titanium successfully fuses to your jawbone, it can operate in the same capacity as your tooth root. However, this is just half the process. The implant has to be covered using a dental prosthesis. This is where you have options such as denture implants or implant-supported bridges or crowns, which you can choose according to your preference.
Once this process is complete, you will feel as though you never lost a tooth. Your tooth function will be restored, and you can enjoy your smile. Tooth implants are versatile and can be used to replace a tooth, several teeth, or even all of your teeth.
However, there’s another thing; you have to be eligible for the treatment.
Technically, anyone who can undergo minor dental surgery can be considered for this restorative treatment. But, it is not that simple since our dentist has to consider some factors before you undergo the procedure, such as:
Tooth implants are inserted in the jawbone, so it stands to reason that a healthy jaw bone would be of paramount importance. Besides the jawbone being healthy, quantity is also a factor.
Getting tooth implants is not an age-restricting procedure. However, there are ideal candidates than others. In this case, children and teenagers are not the ideal candidates since their bones are still developing.
Unhealthy gums will not heal as expected, leading to gum infection after the implants have been placed. So, healthy gums are a must.
As you already know, your oral health and overall health are tethered. So, certain diseases can hinder or slow down the bone healing process. Therefore, if you have diabetes, high blood pressure, or heart disease, you may need to reconsider your option.
Plus, if you smoke or cannot commit to several months of treatment, then you may need to look for another alternative that can replace missing teeth, such as dentures or dental bridges.
Once you have undergone the tooth implant procedure, you will notice that it takes time to get used to your new teeth. So, you will need to take it easy and don’t just lunge into your favorite meals. Avoid spicy, acidic, crunchy, sticky, tough, and hot foods after surgery. Your jaws and gums will be in a delicate state, so go for soft and cold foods for a week or so after surgery.
Remember that your new set of pearly whites would last longer if you take proper care of them. Therefore, brush using the appropriate technique and the right equipment. Don’t forget to brush under the crown to avoid plaque formation.
Implants are an awesome restorative treatment that you can take advantage of if you choose to go down this road. Contact us at Olivia Rodrigues DDS to schedule an appointment.