A dental implant will allow you to wear a healthy smile again. Various problems can affect our teeth and cause them to have severe damage that would lead us to suffer one of the worst dental nightmares: losing a tooth. Cavities, fractures, and periodontal diseases are some of the factors that could cause damage to our teeth. When a tooth is so damaged that it cannot be repaired, the best option would be a tooth extraction.
However, when someone loses a tooth, it is not always due to dental disease; it could also happen due to something fortuitous. A very strong hit to the mouth resulting from a fall, a crash, or an accident, could cause a severe fracture or even the loss of a tooth.
Although the loss of a tooth is a serious and worrisome problem for many people, it is possible to replace one or more teeth using prosthetics such as dentures and dental bridges. But without a doubt, the best option to replace missing teeth is dental implants.
What is a dental implant?
Dental implants consist of screw-shaped pieces of titanium that are surgically inserted into the jawbone and serve as the basis for a custom-made replacement tooth. These implants can be individual or even replace a complete dental arch (in the case of implant-supported bridges).
How is a dental implant placed?
Like other dental procedures, a dentist should recommend dental implants after having assessed the patient’s dental problem. After determining that dental implant surgery is the best option, the patient will be referred to a dental surgeon, who is in charge of performing this procedure.
When the time for surgery has come, the surgeon begins by applying local anesthesia to the gum area to remove any sensitivity from the mouth area.
The dental surgeon begins by making an incision in the gum to expose the jaw bone. Then a hole is made in the bone where the titanium piece is inserted.
Finally, the surgeon closes the wound with some stitches. The implant space will remain empty until the bone and wound heal completely; however, the surgeon will set a temporary replacement tooth to improve appearance.
The patient goes home to rest and waits for the bone and wound to heal completely. The healing time can take several months; after that, the bone will be integrated into the titanium piece, making it completely fixed.
After the healing process is complete, the dentist will take impressions of the mouth and the remaining teeth that will be sent to a laboratory where replacement teeth are manufactured. When the artificial tooth is finished, it can be fixed on the titanium base, and the procedure will be completed.
How long does the dental implant placement process take?
This procedure can take several months from when implants are determined to be necessary until the replacement tooth is placed. The procedure’s long duration is because it is necessary to wait for the jaw bone and the gums to heal entirely before fixing the artificial tooth.
How long do dental implants last?
Being made of very resistant materials, both the titanium base and the replacement teeth are very durable. According to the American Dental Association, dental implants can last up to 25 years. However, dental implants that have been placed properly can last a lifetime with proper dental care.
What are the risks and benefits of undergoing dental implant surgery?
As with any other dental surgery, the patient may suffer small problems such as:
- Swollen gums and face
- Pain in the implant area
- Light bleeding in the surgery area
There is also the risk that the implant area may suffer an infection, so the surgeon will prescribe antibiotics to the patient to reduce possible infection risk.
In the worst case, the bone may not be appropriately integrated into the titanium piece, so it should be necessary to remove the implant, clean the bone. In approximately 3 to 4 months, the procedure could be repeated.
These risks are minor and not very common since dental implant surgeries’ success rate is about 95% effective.
The benefits of dental implants outweigh their hypothetical risks. The main advantages are:
- Implants are the safest and most resistant option since the implant is attached directly to the jaw bone
- More durability than other options such as dentures or dental bridges
- It is not necessary to take special care since the dental hygiene routine is carried out the same as with natural teeth
- Dental implants improve dental aesthetics since artificial teeth are made in the same color as other teeth
In conclusion, dental implants are, without a doubt, the best option to replace missing teeth.
At Aberdeen Dentistry, we offer the best quality and the most accessible dental services in the Boynton Beach area. If you need affordable dental care but don’t know what to do, visit our family-friendly practice in person or book online. Our highly qualified staff can give you the help you need.