Are Dental Implants Right For You?
Despite enormous improvements in dental care, many people still suffer tooth loss due to tooth decay, gum disease or injury. For many years, dentures and bridges were the only treatment options available. Today, however, dental implants are available and are the best choice in many situations.
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that are inserted into the jawbone to replace missing teeth. They are made of pure titanium – a biocompatible metal that bone will heal and attach very strongly to. They can be used to permanently replace a single tooth or several teeth (either next to each other or in different parts of the mouth). They look and function like real teeth. Sometimes implants are used to hold a removable denture securely in place. When you visit us at Your Healthy Smile, your dentist can advise which treatment options are available for your situation.
What Are The Benefits Of Dental Implants?
- Can replace missing teeth in a functional and cosmetic way.
- Can look very natural, and feel just like natural teeth when eating.
- Can help prevent bone loss in the jaw
- Usually do not require the cutting and reshaping of neighbouring healthy teeth like conventional bridges do, thus conserving adjacent tooth structure.
- Are secured in the jaws by a natural process called osseo-integration which fixes the implant to bone.
- Can often replace dentures.
- Can be fitted with special attachments to hold a denture firmly in place.
How Will You Know If Dental Implants Are Right For You?
You will need to discuss your individual case with your dentist, who will help you determine if dental implants are the right treatment for you. Most people can receive dental implants, but there are some exceptions.
Some of these exceptions include:
- Age: Because children younger than 17 are still experiencing growth in their bones, they are not advised to receive dental implants.
- Smoking: Smoking impairs healing, and it may prevent the implant from integrating with the bone. Over time even a successfully integrated implant may fail because a patient continues the smoking habit.
- Bone Loss: If you have experienced too much bone loss in your jaw, you may not be suitable. However, in many cases, bone replacement techniques can be used.
- Pregnancy: it is advised that you wait until after the birth of your baby before seeking implant treatment
- Medical conditions like uncontrolled Diabetes, haemophilia, certain heart conditions or a past history of radiotherapy to jaw are a few of the conditions which may complicate placement of the implant, introduce risks of infection or other health problems.
What About My Medical And Dental History?
It is very important that you thoroughly discuss your medical and dental history with your dentist. Your dentist will need to know of any medications you take currently and any major illnesses or surgeries you have had in the past.
How Do You Care For Dental Implants?
You will care for your dental implants in the same way you care for your natural teeth. You will just brush as you normally do with toothpaste and use dental floss.
Good dental hygiene is very important, because just as your natural teeth can develop plaque and calculus deposits, so can your dental implants. These deposits can lead to dental problems such as bleeding gums, loss of bone, the implant, infection and pain. So like natural teeth good oral hygiene is important.
When properly cared for, dental implants can last for many years. Speak with the dental professionals at Your Healthy Smile St Clair to determine if dental implants are the right choice for your treatment requirements.