When people lose teeth due to injury or decay, dental implants is a cosmetic procedure that can be performed. Here are some things that you should know about dental implants if you are considering this procedure to restore your smile.
What Are Dental Implants Used for?
Dental implants are used to replace missing teeth or teeth that were removed due to tooth decay or trauma. Over time, missing teeth can create problems with the jaw bone that results in reduced bone density and quality. Dental implants can help to prevent additional bone loss and allow new bone to grow in order to maintain the structure of your face and restore your ability to eat normally.
How Is a Dental Implant Procedure Performed?
The dental implant procedure is completely customized to each patient depending on the number of teeth to be replaced. Sometimes only the replacement of a single tooth is needed. In other cases, an entire upper or lower arch of the jaw may need to be replaced. In all cases, replacement teeth will be designed in order to mimic the appearance of your natural teeth.
A dental implant procedure starts with creating an opening in the jaw bone. The implant is then surgically implanted into the bone. Directly following the procedure, your dentist will likely recommend that you maintain a soft diet and avoid alcohol. Alcoholic beverages can interfere with the healing of your dental implant. This process of osseointegration happens during healing as the bone molecules start to attach themselves to the dental implant.
Once sufficient healing has taken place, the surgeon will Insert a metal post that will be used to attach a crown. Artificial teeth that are permanent or removable may be inserted, depending on your specific needs. The full time for the procedure can take six months or more, including the time spent waiting for osseointegration to occur.
Who Is Eligible for Dental Implants?
Dental implants are not designed to help every patient. In fact, you must meet certain criteria in order to be eligible for this procedure. Good oral hygiene and adequate jaw bone structure are necessary to qualify as a dental implants patient. An oral surgeon will examine your jaw bone for volume and bone health before making any recommendations as a part of a consultation.
What Are the Advantages of a Dental Implants Procedure?
In addition to the aesthetic benefits that a dental implants procedure can provide, dental implants also offer protection for your natural teeth and jaw bone. Dental implants is the only procedure that can actually stop bone loss and promote bone regrowth. This can help you to avoid losing additional teeth by keeping your existing healthy teeth in place.
Patients who have undergone this procedure have also benefited from the fact that they no longer have to struggle with speaking due to missing teeth. Unlike dentures, the artificial teeth inserted by a dental implants procedure fit like real teeth. With your speech restored, you can return to the normal activities that you enjoy without having to worry about dentures that fall out or make it difficult to talk.
Once your dental implants are in place, you can also enjoy your favorite foods again. Missing teeth can made it difficult to eat, which makes getting proper daily nutrition difficult. No longer will you have worry about the pain of trying to eat around missing teeth or risking damage to your other teeth as you eat.
If you are considering dental implants, the first step is to schedule a consultation with your dentist. Your dentist can inform you about the costs, risks and timeline of the procedure so that you are fully aware of the commitment that will be required to restore your smile.