What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that provide a base for many dental fixtures including replacement teeth. They are an excellent alternative to dentures. They may serve as a long-term solution for missing teeth and chronic dental problems. They fit, feel, and look like natural teeth, so they are quickly becoming the standard for general tooth replacement procedures.
There are three main parts of a dental implant including the implant, abutment, and crown. The implant is a screw that serves as the root of the tooth. Usually, the screw attaches to your jaw. Next, the abutment is a permanent but removable piece that supports the false tooth. Finally, the crown is the prosthetic tooth, the part of the implant you can see. Implant crowns are regularly made from zirconium or porcelain, making them look like real teeth and stay durable over long-term use.
Implants can be for one tooth or multiple teeth. Dental implants are also built to last around ten years but may last longer with proper care. However, at some point, they will need to be replaced and a dentist can help you with that.
Implants are mainly used to replace missing roots and support artificial replacement teeth. They are usually made of titanium metal frames or posts that are surgically implanted into the jaw beneath your gums. Replacement teeth are then mounted on top. The metal then acts as an anchor for the artificial teeth.
Implants are mainly used for when people lose their teeth in accidents, by disease, old age, and other factors that may cause tooth loss. Tooth implants are a superior to many traditional methods including the use of dentures because they last longer and have no chance of them slipping, falling out, of getting lost. Dental implants are usually attached to your jawbone.
I'm 1952, a Swedish doctor called Branemark found that when bone came into contact with metal, the bone grew against and around the surface, making the titanium removable without having to cut into the bone whatsoever. So, dental implants were actually an accidental discovery.
There's also an alternative substance that can be used for detail implants. The substance is zirconium. Zirconium is one row below titanium on the periodic table and acts as a metal-free alternative to using titanium in implants.
When you lose a tooth or teeth, it not only affects the way you look but the way you chew as well. This can impact self-esteem, but also the rest of your teeth. When you have a gap, other teeth may shift in the mouth over time causing damage in the mouth due to pressure. These kinds of effects may lead to tooth loss, which makes everyday tasks including eating and drinking more difficult and uncomfortable.
Dentures, when cared for correctly, need to be replaced every five to eight years. But dental implants normally have a lifespan of on average ten years, but can last up to fifteen. That's almost double the lifespan when choosing dental implants over dentures.
2. Cost-Effective Investment
With dental implants, there isn’t much need for replacements, adjustments, or repairs after the prosthetic tooth has been secured in the jaw and mouth, unlike dentures that require more consistent care, check-ups, and repairs that can cost a considerable amount of additional money. Not to mention all the products you save on by choosing dental implants over dentures. Dentures may also require some additional products to be both cleaned and secured. With implants, you can skip buying any of those products and save on both time and money by investing in implants.
3. Highly Durable
Unlike some other dental alternatives, dental implants are permanent fixtures secured inside the mouth. Permanent also means that there is no need to remove and reinsert the teeth. Also, dental implants are known for being highly durable. You can eat foods without worrying about cracking or damaging your implants. They give you the freedom to live your life normally.
Dental implants have a very natural feel to them. They are comparable in weight, feel, and appearance of a natural tooth.
5. Comfortable Fit
You won't be able to notice your dental implants after an adjustment period. They are light and natural, which improves comfort for users.
6. Aesthetically Pleasing
Dental implants can be customized to fit anyone's mouth and match the rest of their teeth. They are very attractive and even family and friends won't be able to tell the difference between your real teeth and your implant.
7. Requires Less Maintenance
Skipping on all the products and checkups is great, and completely normal for dental implant users.
8. Function Like Regular Teeth
Dental implants and regular teeth work in indistinguishable ways. They function, look, and feel exactly the same.
9. Doesn't Require Adjustments
Implants can be customized to suit your mouth and surrounding teeth exactly. There is no need for any additional adjustments. So, there's no need to create more or less space with dental procedures, you can just have the implants customized just for you and your mouth.
As we know, dental implants or foundations are made from titanium metals. Titanium does not cause infection when inserted into the bone, which makes it an excellent choice for grounding replacement teeth for dental implants.
How implants are done in four steps
1. Your dentist or orthodontist will first examine your mouth. He’ll also take x-rays of your teeth, jaw, and head to find out if dental implants are right for you, and to get an idea of where the problem areas are. As long as your gums are very healthy, and you have enough jawbone to drill into in order to set the foundations for your implants. In rare cases, the jawbone will be too shallow and the dental implant process will be modified.
2. Once you’ve been cleared for your procedure, during the first part of the surgery, your dentist or orthodontist will put a dental implant foundation into your jawbone beneath your gums. You gum tissue is then stitched back into place. As the surrounding tissues heal, the implant will integrate with the bone and attach to the gum. It can take a few months to heal and ensure proper integration. It's vital that your body accepts the implant because it could cause infection otherwise.
3. The second part of your surgery won’t occur till a few month later after tissues have healed. At that time, your dentist or orthodontist will attach an abutment to the implant. An abutment is a post that connects the replacement tooth to the implant Sometimes the first and second stage of implant surgery may be both done at once.
A replacement tooth is made and your dentist or orthodontist will attach it to the abutment. It may take multiple appointments to fit the replacement tooth to the abutment.
4. When replacing several teeth or all of your teeth, a fixed bridge is anchored down to your dental implants and jaw. A bridge is a dental procedure that replaces one or more missing teeth by replacing an area that has no teeth. The bridge is held in place by dental implants on either side of the missing tooth or teeth.
Side effects from dental implants
Side effects are very rare, but they do occur occasionally. There are small groups of individuals that may be at a higher risk for complications involving dental implants. If you are at a higher risk, you should consult further with your dentist and general or primary health care provider.
All side effects from dental implants are very rare. If you care for your dental implants well and work with a dentist you trust, you won’t run into any side effects.
Allergy To Titanium
There are titanium-free options for those with allergies. The reason why a titanium implant could be problematic is because if you are allergic, your body won’t accept the implant. Instead, it may reject it and cause inflammation, infection, and other side effects.
Infection And Inflammation
Viruses and bacteria may cause swelling and heat around the site of operation.
Sometimes the body may reject the implant, and the cause is often unknown. This may lead to infection and other problems later. Usually, the implant needs to be replaced or the material needs to be adjusted. For example, a titanium implant may be switched out for a zirconia implant instead to a reduce chance of infection. Your immune system is simply trying to protect you when rejection occurs.
Rarely, nerve damage may occur. This often caused by trapped nerves, which may occur during surgery. This may make facial and mouth-related movements more challenging may become permanent. To avoid this, only use a dentist who is experienced and has a good standing when it comes to giving implants.
Dental Implants are an excellent alternative to other traditional tooth replacement alternatives.
Reasons To Choose Dental Implants
The Most Natural Option
Instead of dentures and other alternatives, dental implants are the most natural in look and feel. They integrate well with your remaining teeth, so no one will be able to tell that it’s not your real tooth. They don’t shift, slip, or anything at all. They are locked in place for easier smiles.
The dental fixture is permanent, however, some components will need to be replaced over time. That being said, most implants only need to be replaced once every decade with minimal maintenance in between. It’s cost-effective and the longest lasting option with the least maintenance.
Prevent Bone Loss
Once you’ve lost a tooth, bone loss often occurs as well. But by choosing a dental implant instead of another procedure, you can help to prevent any bone loss which will encourage better overall oral health.
Simple And Easy Care
With dentures, you’ll need to use special products and cleaning habits in order to care for them. However, with implants, you can care for your teeth as you normally would. Brushing twice a day and flossing is all you need to do for maintenance, while also attending regular dental checkups.
Dental implants are an excellent choice both aesthetically, practically, and economically. They can last for over a decade when cared for correctly as well. Today, you can consider dental implants over dentures and other dental alternatives for tooth replacement to help you feel back to normal and improve your overall health.
Dental implants are not recommended for children who have not achieved their full adult set of teeth. However, if you’re healthy and well-suited for the procedure, dental implants can help to boost your self-confidence and allow you to feel like you have naturally healthy teeth.
You can ask your dentist if dental implants are right for you. You should make sure that you aren't at any higher risk of infection or rejection, and you should also let your dentist know if you have any allergies including and in addition to titanium.