What Are Dental Implants Like Today?

It’s a given that our teeth are important—they are one of the first things people see when they meet us, and a healthy smile goes a long way. Unfortunately, our teeth are susceptible to many problems, from cavities to gum disease. And while there are treatments available for these issues, sometimes the damage is too significant, and the tooth must be removed.

This is where dental implants come in. A dental implant is an artificial replacement for a natural tooth. Here’s what you need to know about dental implants today, including the available types and how to choose one.

What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are titanium posts surgically placed into the jawbone to support a replacement tooth or teeth. The implant fuses with the jawbone over time, providing a strong and stable foundation for the new teeth.

Dental implants can be used to replace one or more missing teeth. They can also support a dental bridge or denture, providing a more secure fit and making it easier to eat and speak.

What Are the Different Types of Dental Implants?

There are 2 main types of dental implants: subperiosteal and endosteal.

Endosteal implants are undoubtedly the most popular type of implant. They are typically placed directly into the jawbone, and once they have healed, a second surgery is needed to place the post that will support the replacement tooth.

Subperiosteal implants are placed under the gum but on top of the jawbone. They are an option for people with insufficient jawbones to support an endosteal implant. Once the implant heals, the metal frame becomes attached to the bone, and the replacement teeth are placed on the gum.

How Do I Choose a Dental Implant?

There are several factors to consider when choosing a dental implant, including:

The number of teeth replaced: One dental implant can support one tooth, and multiple implants can support a dental bridge or denture.

The Location of the Tooth

The type of implant will be determined by the tooth’s place. For example, an anterior (front) tooth will require a different implant than a posterior (back) tooth.

The Health of the Jawbone

The implant must be placed in a healthy area of the jawbone to ensure proper fusion.

The Overall Health of the Patient

Overall health is essential in any surgical procedure, and dental implants are no different. Patients who are smokers or have certain medical conditions may not be candidates for dental implants.

What Are the Benefits of Dental Implants?

There are many benefits to choosing dental implants, including the following:

Improved Appearance

Dental implants look and feel like natural teeth and are designed to match the color of your existing teeth. Furthermore, because they are placed in the jawbone, they support the lips and cheeks, giving you a natural-looking smile.

Improved Speech

Dental implants are placed securely in the jawbone, so they will not slip or move when you speak. This can be specifically beneficial for people who wear dentures, as loose-fitting dentures can cause slurring or mumbling.

Enhanced Comfort

Dental implants eliminate the pain and irritation caused by dentures that do not fit properly.

Better Oral Health

Unlike dental bridges, which rely on adjacent teeth for support, dental implants do not require any alteration to the surrounding teeth. This helps to preserve your oral health.

How Long Do Dental Implants Last?

The implant screw, with regular brushing and flossing, can last indefinitely; however, the crown will only last 10 to 15 years before replacement due to everyday wear and tear. Furthermore, the jawbone around the implant will continue to degrade over time, which can eventually lead to the loss of the implant. It is essential to visit your dentist regularly to ensure that the implant is still securely in place and to monitor the health of the surrounding jawbone.

Procedures That You May Have With Dental Implants

Ridge Expansion

A ridge expansion is a standard procedure to make more room for dental implants in the patient’s mouth. This is often necessary when the patient has suffered from tooth loss, and the gum tissue has receded, exposing more of the jawbone.

Socket Grafting

Socket grafting is a kind of bone grafting often performed with dental implants. The procedure involves taking bone from another area of the patient’s body and grafting it into the socket where the tooth was removed. This helps to preserve the jawbone and prevent further deterioration.

Bone Grafting

Bone grafting is a procedure often performed in conjunction with dental implants. The process involves taking bone from another area of the patient’s body and grafting it into the jawbone. This helps to preserve the jawbone and prevent further deterioration.

Sinus Lift

Implants are notoriously difficult to place in the upper back jaw due to the proximity of the sinuses. A sinus lift is a type of bone grafting performed to make more room in the jaw for dental implants. The procedure involves lifting the sinus membrane and grafting bone into the space created.

Get Your Perfect Smile

Your smile is one of the first things people notice about you, so it’s vital to ensure it looks its best. Dental implants can help you achieve a beautiful, natural-looking smile that you can be proud of.

If you are thinking of getting a dental implant, consult a seasoned implant dentist to go over your options and ensure that you are a suitable candidate for the procedure. Once you have decided to proceed with dental implants, your dentist will work with you to develop a treatment plan tailored to your specific needs and goals.

Dental implants may be the right solution for you if you want to improve your appearance and boost your self-confidence. Consult a qualified implant dentist such as Dr. Kevin F. Postol to learn more about this exciting treatment option.

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