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A dental implant is a titanium post which mimics the root of the tooth and it’s surgically positioned into your jawbone beneath the gum line. After the implant is positioned, your dentist mounts replacement teeth or a bridge to replace a tooth or teeth that have fallen off, into that area.
Implants are a very useful new way to replace teeth that have been lost due to ageing, gum disease or trauma.
The options which were earlier available to replace missing teeth were an ordinary bridge which was attached to teeth on either side of the space left by the missing tooth.
- A big advantage of implants is that no adjacent teeth need to be chipped or ground down to hold your new replacement tooth or teeth in place.
- Dental implants allow you to speak without the worry that teeth might slip. It gives you improved speech.
- An implant also is better for maintaining dental health as it does not have to be anchored to other teeth, like bridges.
- Dental implants function like your own teeth, allowing you to eat your favorite foods with confidence and without pain.
- Implants also don’t come loose as dentures can.
Because implants fuse to the jawbone, they provide stable support for artificial teeth. This means dentures and bridges mounted to implants don’t slip or shift in your mouth. This helps you eat and speak normally.
This secure fit also makes the dentures and bridges mounted over implants feel more natural than bridges or dentures.
Some people can’t get ordinary bridges and dentures because of sore spots, poor ridges or gagging and for them, implants are a heaven send.
Should you get implants?
You can only get implants if you must have healthy gums and adequate bone to support the implant. If your bone is too thin or soft you may have to get a bone graft first.
You should also be committed to keeping your implants healthy. For this, you should be committed to meticulous oral hygiene and regular dental visits as these will ensure the long-term success of your dental implants.
Two types of implants are considered safe by the American Dental Association. They are:
- Endosteal implants —These are surgically implanted directly into your jawbone. This is followed by a second surgery to connect a post to the original implant after the surrounding gum tissue has healed. And finally, an artificial tooth or teeth is attached to the post. This can be done individually or grouped on a bridge or denture.
- Subperiosteal implants — These consist of a metal frame that is fitted onto your jawbone. After the gums heal, the frame automatically becomes fixed to the jawbone. After these artificial teeth are mounted onto the posts, which are attached to the frame, and left to protrude through the gums just like with endosteal implants.
- Implants are very natural but they are expensive than other dentures or bridges, the other methods of teeth replacement. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can ask a free question.