Dental Implants 

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What Is A Dental Implant?

We use dental implants to replace a missing tooth or teeth. They closely resemble the appearance and function of natural teeth.

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 firmly 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 natural teeth. Implants are also used to hold a removable denture or full dentures securely in place. 

When you visit us at Your Healthy Smile, your St Clair dentist can advise which treatment options are available for your situation.

Implants are placed in the jawbone, allowing them to fuse with the bone and stimulate natural bone growth.

What Can Implants Do 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.

The person who has lost teeth regains the ability to eat virtually anything and smile with confidence, knowing that teeth appear natural and preserve facial contours. Dental implants are the best tooth-replacement method because they look and feel like natural teeth.  Dental implants are ideal for people who have lost a tooth or who have multiple missing teeth.

Dental implants are a more realistic option for replacing damaged teeth than traditional dentures.

Dental implants have become the best-selling cosmetic procedure in the United States, with more than one in four Americans reporting having had one.

Who Can Benefit From Dental Implants?

Dental implants are a great way to replace missing teeth, and they’re a great alternative to dentures. They leave “natural” looking teeth, so they tend to do a better job at improving your smile than a tooth gap, dentures and dental veneers. And this can boost self-confidence.

One of the benefits of dental implants is that they’re a permanent solution. They’ll stay in your mouth for life, and they’re solid. They are more robust than dentures and dental bridges so that you can eat everyday foods.

Dental implants can often replace dentures, and your dentist can fit them with special attachments to hold a denture firmly in place.

How Are Dental Implants Different From Dentures And Partials?

There are several options for missing teeth. These include dental implants, dentures and partial dentures (for one or more missing teeth).  

Dentures are the removable false teeth that are used to replace teeth that have been lost due to tooth decay or injury amongst other causes.”

How Are Dentures And Dental Implants Different?

Dentures can be made to resemble your natural teeth. However, over time, the bone in your jaw will shift and change, which can impact your jawline and appearance.

Examples of dentures and partials

Examples of dentures and forms of partials

Dentures, like implants, are strong these days. However, they are more fragile than implants, and we suggest avoiding hard or sticky foods. Over time, the jaw bone will erode, and the teeth may slip with time.

If you're wearing dentures, you have to pay extra attention to keeping them clean and in place. The most common cause of malfunctioning dentures is an accumulation of food particles underneath the archwire. If this happens, you'll need to remove your dentures and clean them thoroughly every night. Spit guards can also be a problem for denture wearers.

Tooth-supported bridge: This alternative to implants is a bridge that can be attached to the tooth with screws. It's not as good as an implant, but it's certainly better than grinding away healthy teeth that support the bridge. The bone under the tooth-supported bridge deteriorates over time. The bridges start to create problems over time because they are hard to clean and floss. The cleaning difficulties can make areas around the bridgework prone to decay.

Removable partial dentures:  Although these don’t need the dentist to grind down the teeth next to the tooth being replaced, they are weaker than dental implants. Consequently, they lack the same comfort and stability. They also often look unnatural and do not function as well as implant-supported crowns.

Removable complete denture: This denture sits on top of your gums where the missing teeth once were. Over time, it can cause discomfort because it sits on top of the gums, causing sore gums and shifting around when you talk, eat, smile, yawn or cough. While the initial costs are low, they only last for a limited amount of time (about 10m years), so they will need to be replaced multiple times in your lifetime.

What Are The Benefits Of Dental Implants Over Other Tooth Replacement Methods?

Implants are an ideal tooth replacement solution for patients who are missing one or more teeth. They are designed to provide a foundation for a replacement tooth that looks, feels, and functions like a natural tooth. 

Implants are the only tooth replacement option that allows you to eat and speak like you would with natural teeth. 

It’s also possible to use dental implants to anchor dentures, making them more comfortable and secure. 

Dental implants are the only option that allows you to bite, chew and speak with confidence, just like you did with your natural teeth.

Is It Safe To Get Dental Implants?

Dental implants are a safe and effective treatment option for people who have lost teeth. Many studies have shown that implants are stronger and more durable than fixed bridgework and dentures and that they cause very little damage to surrounding tissues.

How Will You Know If Dental Implants Are Right For You?

Dental implants are for anyone who is missing teeth and wants a permanent solution. They’re an excellent option for people who want to smile with confidence, eat whatever they want, and avoid dentures. Implants are very durable and can last a lifetime, and depending on the dental implants used, your dentist can use them to support single or multiple teeth.

Who Should Not Get Dental Implants?

Although dental implants can benefit many people, there are some instances where they’re not the best option. 

  • Age: Because children younger than 17 are still experiencing growth in their bones, they are not advised to receive dental implants.
  • Smoking: If you smoke,  you should discuss this with your dentist. If you’re a heavy smoker, then it’s best to wait until you’ve quit smoking for at least a year before you get dental implants. 
  • Bone loss: In many cases, your dentist can use bone replacement techniques.
  • Pregnancy: it is advised that you wait until after the birth of your baby before seeking implant treatment
  • Certain medical conditions: Conditions like uncontrolled diabetes, haemophilia, certain heart conditions or a history of radiotherapy to the jaw are a few of the conditions which may complicate placement of the implant, introduce risks of infection or other health problems.  If you have a medical condition that affects your ability to heal, you may not be a good candidate for dental implants.
  • Poor oral health: Avoid dental implants if you have poor oral hygiene, a history of severe gum disease, or a history of tooth loss.

People who are not ready to commit to dental implants should not get them. Dental implants are not something you put into your mouth and then leave alone. You need to be committed to taking care of them for the rest of your life.

How Long Will It Take To Get My New Teeth With An Dental Implant Crown In Place?

Every person is different. Usually, it takes about two to three months to get the teeth in place and get used to wearing them.

The procedure involves four main stages:

  1. Planning for the implant with a 3D scan.
  2. The implant is then inserted & The stability of the implant is reassured as the bone tissue surrounds the surface over time.
  3. An abutment is fitted on the implant to support the crown.
  4. Finally, the crown is attached to the abutment.

There may be challenges and resource-intensive periods that will require you to work with a dentist for months or even years.

How Do You Care For Dental Implants?

You care for your dental implants in the same way you care for your natural teeth. You will just brush as you usually do with toothpaste and use dental floss.

Good dental hygiene is essential 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 essential.

When properly cared for, dental implants can last for many years. Speak with the dentists at Healthy Smile St Clair to determine if dental implants are the right choice for your treatment requirements.

Are There Any Special Considerations When Choosing An Implant Dentist Near Me?

It’s essential to visit a dentist that provides the best possible care for your teeth. It can be dangerous to ignore the advice of a well-trained, experienced dentist. Avoiding dental treatment can result in you having a damaged or broken implant, a gum infection, or an implant that doesn’t integrate with the bone.