After remarkable advances in dentistry in recent years, dental implants have become the treatment of choice for people missing one, a few, or all of their teeth, and for those with failing teeth or severe periodontal disease. Dental implants look and perform more like natural teeth. They are anchored in the jaw, just like teeth, so there is no artificial plastic on the roof of the mouth and the need for adhesives and denture creams is eliminated. More importantly, the use of dental implants does not impact healthy adjacent teeth.
Dental implants are long-lasting tooth root replacements that are implanted into your jaw to simulate the root of a pre-existing tooth. Replacement teeth are then restored on to the implant, returning you to a confident smile. Unlike dentures or bridges, dental implants dont move or shift and they can last a lifetime.
A dental implant designed to replace a single tooth is composed of three parts: the small titanium screw that fuses into the jaw; the abutment, which forms a small post protruding above the gum line; and the tooth shaped porcelain crown, providing a natural appearance.
What are dental implants?
A dental implant is composed of three components: a small titanium screw that is inserted into and fuses with the jawbone, an abutment or post which attaches to the implant, and a crown (in the case of one implant) that fits over the abutment to provide a natural looking tooth that functions well. Dental implants may be used to replace individual teeth, multiple teeth, or all your teeth in one or both arches. In the case of a full arch, 14 teeth may be supported by as few as four implants.
What are the benefits of dental implants?
Can anyone have dental implants?
Almost everyone that has lost a tooth, several teeth or even all of their teeth is a candidate for dental implants. There are very few situations in which implants are not suitable.
How painful is the dental implant procedure?
This procedure, as any other oral surgical procedure, has some associated discomfort. However most implant patients comment that they were surprised at how minimal and short the duration of discomfort was.
How do I care for my dental implants and new teeth?
Implant supported teeth need to be brushed and cared for just like natural teeth, although flossing will be different. As with natural teeth, you will need to visit your dentist and hygienist periodically for review and maintenance.
Am I too old to have implants?
Age is not a factor for dental implant success. Bone healing around dental implants occurs in patients from the 6th to the 10th decade of life with almost equal success as in younger patients. The only thing to stand in the way of dental implant treatment in the elderly is general medical health, your dentist can discuss this with you at your consultation.
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