Here’s a piece of good news for all of you out there who feel extremely embarrassed about their missing teeth. There’s no need to stop smiling, speaking or eating like you used to. The field of cosmetic dentistry is ever evolving to provide individuals with options for tooth replacement. And one of the best options in the field so far is a dental implant.
Usually suited best for individuals who have a record of good oral health and hygiene, a dental implant is a duplicate tooth root that is placed into the jaw in order to hold a replaced tooth or bridge in its place. Dental implants are stand alone dental devices that do not need the support of neighboring teeth and so are more favorable than traditional bridges.
Extremely realistic in appearance and feel, dental implants would almost make you forget that you had lost a tooth in the first place. They look exactly like original teeth and fit perfectly to enable a proper alignment of teeth as well. And with proper care and maintenance, they can go a long way in helping you to achieve a perfect smile.
Conditions that can be corrected by Dental Implants include:
1. Instances wherein an individual has to replace either a single or a couple of teeth without causing any disturbances to the neighboring teeth.
2. Instances where an implanted denture needs to be made more secure.
3. Instances where an entire bridge needs to be supported, thus reducing the need for partial dentures (removable).
The Benefits of opting for Dental Implants
When compared to bridges and removable dentures, dental implants offer a series of advantages to the wearer. Some of the more common advantages include:
Renewed confidence and self esteem
Dental implants are as close to the real thing as possible. Since they look exactly like original teeth, they would save individuals from the embarrassment that usually accompanies dentures and bridges.
The implants are firmly fitted and do no wobble or click like dentures. This in turn would enable individuals to move their mouth freely while talking, eating or drinking. Above all, dental implants offer solace from the messy pastes and glues that accompany dentures and bridges. .
Dental implants are fitted either on or inside the jaw bone, thereby providing stability to the prosthetics. They also help to prevent issues like gum recession and bone loss which are common side effects with bridges and dentures. Moreover the entire procedure of fitting a dental implant is considered highly accurate and predictable with guaranteed results.
No Tooth Loss
In the case of bridges and dentures, the dentist would need to work on the neighboring teeth in order to accommodate the devices. This could cause damage to the bordering teeth and can also cause trauma to the tooth in certain cases. There is no need to worry about that in dental implants. With dental implants, the neighboring teeth are left untouched and so do not face any unnecessary side effects from the device.
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Different kinds of Dental Implants
There are two different kinds of implants that are usually opted for by orthodontists and patients alike. They include:
These dental implants are placed on top of the jaw bone. Usually prescribed for individuals who have low bone height or cannot wear traditional dentures, subperiosteal implants contain posts that protrude from the metal framework and through the gums to hold the prosthetic tooth in place.
These dental implants are placed into the jawbone, including the blades, screws and cylinders that come with them. Usually prescribed for individuals who are fitted with partial dentures or bridges, these implants can hold one more prosthetics.
Prior Requirements for Dental Implants
Not everyone can get a dental implant. Dental implants can be fitted only in those individuals who have satisfactory overall oral health and hygiene. The person must have adequate jaw bone which is considered a necessity to support the dental implant. The person opting for a dental implant should also be free of teeth or gum related issues like cavities, decay or periodontal disease etc. as the implant would be interconnected with the gums as well.
The Basic Treatment Plan for Dental Implants
Your orthodontist/periodontist would chalk up the best treatment plan for you based on factors like the condition that is being treated, the type of implant chosen for the job and where it needs to be placed in your mouth. In most cases, the orthodontist would choose from one of the following treatment plans for better results.
Single Tooth Replacement: can be done with just a single implant and crown that would replace both the lost tooth and the root.
Multiple Teeth Replacement: can be done by fitting bridges that are supported by implants to replace lost teeth and some of their roots.
Complete Teeth Replacement
Can be done by fitting complete bridges or dentures, supported by dental implants to replace the teeth and roots.
Ridge Correction: Is done when there is not enough jaw bone to support the implant. The gum in the area is lifted away to expose the bone which is then augmented with additional bone or a bone substitute to complete the ridge. This helps the implants to hold onto the jaw bone firmly and last longer in the process.
Sinus Augmentation: Is usually done in the upper and lower back jaws where the bone density and quality is comparatively less. With this procedure, the sinus floor is raised and the upper jaw bone is developed further to support the dental implant better.
Maintenance and Follow Up Treatments
Dental implants are just like original teeth and so need to be taken care of in the same way. Regular brushing and flossing can keep the implants healthy and problem free in the long run. Periodic visits to the orthodontist need to be made to check the implants from time to time. These visits to the orthodontist would make sure that your implants and the teeth and gums around them remain healthy.
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