If you are missing one or more teeth, or your teeth are damaged, you might resist smiling or talking in public situations. Luckily, you don’t have to do that anymore. Dental implants, such as those provided by the dental professionals at San Tan Oral Surgery in Gilbert, AZ, can help restore your smile. Keep reading to learn more about the benefits that implants can provide.
Important Benefits of Dental Implants
Dental implants may be the most important innovation in dental surgery in the past generation. They have revolutionized how people live when a tooth is missing or removed. Implants offer several important benefits to patients seeking to replace a tooth.
An Implant Offers a Natural Experience
Once it is placed and healed, an implant integrates into the jawbone and becomes incredibly strong and durable. The crown that is attached serves as a natural tooth. They are brushed and flossed the same way as your other teeth, with no special cleaners or trays to worry about.
That natural experience also affects your diet. You won’t have to worry about biting into hard or chewy foods. An implant-supported crown can handle them just like natural teeth. For many people, this promotes healthier eating and better oral and overall physical health.
They Reduce Bone Loss
Implants also help to minimize bone loss. When a tooth is missing, there is no pressure placed on the bone that previously supported it. As a result, the remaining bone slowly begins to recede. Over time, significant bone loss can occur, potentially compromising the stability of the remaining teeth.
However, implants act as an entire tooth, root and all. That means that natural chewing stimulates the jaw and helps spur bone growth, reversing the natural effects of bone loss that often occurs after a tooth is removed or falls out.
Implants Preserve Surrounding Teeth
Whether due to poor fit or the insertion and removal process, wear is quite common with many other types of dental appliances. In addition to preserving bone, implants reduce strain and wear on surrounding teeth. They also help protect the natural teeth and preserve their alignment within the mouth by serving as a placeholder, so shifting does not occur.
They Restore Your Natural Appearance
This may be one of the most desirable qualities of dental implants. They offer a natural appearance that extends far beyond the tooth surface by supporting existing facial and jaw contours.
If you have ever seen someone who has been without teeth for a long time, you probably know the sunken look that can develop around the jawline. That happens because of bone loss. By promoting a strong jawbone, implants virtually eliminate the sunken look that often appears when teeth are missing and can make you look years older than you really are.
Implants Are Comfortable
Some types of dental appliances can be uncomfortable because they press on your gums or otherwise cause irritation. However, implants do none of that. Once the surgical site is healed, they feel and act just like any of the surrounding teeth.
They Offer a Long-Term Solution
Unlike other tooth replacement options that need to be replaced periodically, implants are designed to last for many years. For many people, they are a permanent replacement for missing teeth. That means you don’t have to worry about scheduling new fittings or paying for a new set of dentures every few years.
How Do Implants Work?
An artificial titanium root forms the basis for an implant. This is placed into the jawbone. If there is bone loss so that the implant cannot be supported, a bone graft may be necessary to reinforce the jaw. As natural healing occurs, new bone grows around the implant, making it a fully integrated anchor point for a future crown or bridge.
Depending on the number of teeth you are replacing, you might have a single crown made to go over the implant. In some cases, however, multiple teeth can be anchored onto a single implant with a bridge. It is also possible to replace an entire set of teeth on several implant anchors.
Who Should Consider Implants?
Most healthy adults can safely consider implants to replace one or more missing teeth. However, while there are many benefits to getting a dental implant, there are some reasons you may want to consider postponing the process or seeking an alternative for tooth replacement.
One important consideration is that any growth in the teeth and jaw is completed. For most patients, this occurs around the age of 18. However, there can be minor variations, so you should always talk to your dentist about whether or not you are ready for an implant to be placed.
Some health conditions and lifestyle behaviors, such as smoking, can interfere with the healing process necessary for your new implant to integrate into the bone. For that reason, you should carefully discuss your medical history with your dentist. Smokers might also want to look at other replacement options for missing teeth.
Learn More About Your Options
You don’t have to live with missing or severely damaged teeth. Contact San Tan Oral Surgery in Gilbert, AZ today to schedule a consultation to learn more about the benefits of dental implants.