Dental Implants are simulated tooth roots, similar to screws that are placed into your jawbone to replace a missing tooth. They bond with your natural bone, offering a firm base for supporting artificial teeth, known as crowns. Today, dental implants are considered a standard of care for a prosthetic replacement of a missing tooth. A dental implant mimics the natural functionality of a tooth giving your face a much suitable appearance without affecting the nearby teeth. They are surgically placed into the jawbone, and it takes around a couple of months to fuse with the bone. Since they are made of titanium, they easily assimilate with the bone without being identified as an alien object in our body.
Why would you need dental implants?
Whether you have one tooth missing, several of them, or all of the teeth missing, dental implants can be used as the replacement. The goal of dental implants is to restore the natural function as well as the aesthetics of your mouth.
When it comes to tooth replacement, dentists offer three options – removable dental appliance (dentures), fixed dental bridge, and dental implants. Of the three, dentures are the most affordable ones but the least desirable since they have the inconvenience of constant removal and application. On the other hand, a removable dental appliance can hinder once sensory and taste experience with the food.
A fixed dental bridge was the most common tooth replacement option before dental implants. Since the bridgework is entirely dependent on the adjacent natural teeth for support, it can easily harm your existing teeth. This is where dental implants rose to popularity.
However, opting for dental implants depend on many factors, such as:
- The health of the patient
- Patient preference
- Quality and quantity of the jawbone where the implant will be placed
- Location of the missing teeth or tooth
The dentist first examines the areas of the missing teeth/tooth, which you are considering for a dental implant. The dentist then makes clinical assessments on whether you are a good candidate for dental implants.
There are many benefits to choosing dental implants over other alternatives for tooth replacement. For starter, they don’t alter or affect the adjacent teeth. They also integrate well with the jawbone that they look like natural teeth. They are very stable and can last for decades or even lifetime.
Different Types of Dental Implants
There are basically two types of dental implants
The primary difference between the two types is that the endosteal means ‘in the bone,’ whereas subperiosteal means under the gum tissue and on top of the jawbone.
Subperiosteal, due to their poor long-term results, is practiced less as compared to endosteal.
What are the benefits of dental implants?
- Convenience – no inconvenience or embarrassment of constant removal of dentures
- Durability – can last for a lifetime given that they are installed professionally and provided with proper care
- Improved oral health – they allow easy access between teeth without hindering the functionality of the adjacent teeth, improving oral hygiene
- Improved self-esteem
- Easier eating