Understanding Dental Implants
Dental implants are considered the closest you can get to replacing healthy, natural teeth. They are essentially artificial tooth roots that offer a permanent base for fixed replacement teeth. Unlike dentures and bridges, they don’t come loose because they are surgically positioned into the jawbone.
What exactly are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are surgically positioned posts typically made of titanium placed into the jawbone beneath the gums. Once the posts are in place, the dentists can mount the replacement teeth onto them. This provides a sturdy foundation for the replacement teeth as the bone grows and bonds with the implant.
- Components of a Dental Implant: A typical dental implant is made up of three parts:
- The Implant (The Root): This is the foundation and acts as the root and is made from titanium. It is embedded into the jawbone and overtime, fuses with the bone ensuring a stable and durable base.
- The Abutment: A permanent connector that holds the replacement tooth. It provides the platform for holding the replacement tooth and It can only be removed by a dentist.
- The Crown (or prosthetic tooth): This is the visible part of the tooth and is often made of ceramic or porcelain for a natural look. The crown is then attached to the abutment completing the entire procedure.
How does it integrate with the Jawbone
- The integration happens with a process called osseointegration. In this process, the bone cells attach themselves to the titanium surface. This process takes a few months and provides the strength and stability that makes the implants so effective.
Benefits of Dental Implants over Traditional Methods
Dental implants are now widely considered the more popular options over other method like bridges and dentures. There are a few reasons why dental implants outrank the traditional methods.
- Natural Look and Comfort: Dental implants are the closest you get to look and feel of natural teeth. The fuse with the bone creating a permanent fixture that feels and looks like a natural tooth. Since they fuse with your jawbone, they feel just like actual teeth which is a huge advantage over the traditional methods.
- Durability: Dental implants are very durable and can last many years. With proper care, they can even last a lifetime. This means less visits to the dentist making them a cost effective solution in the long run.
- Preserving Jawbone & Facial Structure: Empty places after losing one or more teeth can lead to deterioration of the jawbone. On the other hand, dental implants stimulate bone growth, preventing bone loss. this helps maintain integrity of your facial structure and overall face. This can give you back your smile, making you feel better about yourself.
- Enhanced Oral Health: Unlike tooth-supported bridges, dental implants don’t require reducing other teeth. As more of your own teeth are left intact, it improves long-term oral health.
- Easier Eating: Sliding dentures can make chewing a task. Dental implants function like your own teeth, allowing you to eat your favourite foods without any hassle.
Caring for Your Dental Implants
Dental implants isn’t magic, having dental implants doesn’t mean you can ignore oral hygiene. They are designed to be durable and mimic natural teeth, however, proper dental care ensures the longevity of your implants and overall oral health. Below we have listed an in-depth guide on maintaining your dental implants.
- Daily Brushing and Flossing: This cannot be emphasized enough. Ensure you’re brushing twice a day and flossing at least once.
- Regular Dental Check-ups: Visit your dentist regularly for cleaning and check-ups. This will help in early detection of any potential issues.
- Avoid Hard and Sticky Foods: While dental implants are durable, it’s best to avoid very hard or sticky foods that might cause undue pressure.
- Quit Smoking: Smoking can weaken the bone structure and can contribute to implant failure. Smokings are harmful for the teeth overall and are harmful to your overall health.
- Regular checkups: It is still important to visit your dentist every 6 months to checkup on the oral health just like you would with regular teeth. Dentists can professionally clean areas that might be difficult to clean at home.
- Avoiding Implants Overload: Avoid putting excessive force or pressure is placed on the implant, which can cause it to loosen or fail. As a result. regular check-ups can ensure any such issues are detected and managed early.
The Process of Getting Dental Implants
Getting implants can be daunting and therefore, embarking on the journey to receive dental implants? Below we have listed what is expected when you do go in for getting dental implants.
- Initial Consultation: The consultation begins with a thorough examination including X-rays or 3D images. Your dentist will assess the health of your jawbone, decide if you need bone grafting, and discuss the implant process.
- Treatment Plan: Based on the assessment, a personalized treatment is crafted and then eventually executed. There may be other procedures such as bone grafting and tooth extractions to provide a more solid base for the implant.
- Placement of the Implant: During a minor surgery, the dentist places the implant into the jawbone. Over a few months, the jawbone will fuse with this implant in a process called osseointegration.
- Adding the Abutment: Once osseointegration is complete, a minor surgery is conducted to attach the piece to which the crown will be attached.
- Attaching the Crown: The final step is attaching the crown to the abutment. This is the visible part of the tooth. After this, the implant should function just like a natural tooth.
Possible Side Effects and How to Address Them
As with any surgical procedure, dental impact also have their potential side effects and ricks. Though dental implants have a high success rate, like all surgical procedures, there might be side effects and it’s important to be informed of possible complications and manage them effectively.
- Infection at the Implant Site: There is a bacterial infection known as peri-impantitis which affects the gum, and bone surrounding the impact. Always follow post-surgery care instructions from your dentist to reduce the risk of infection.
- Injury to Surrounding Structures: On rare occasions, nearby teeth or blood vessels might be injured. Your dentist should use X-rays or CT scans for precise placement.
- Nerve Damage: This can cause pain or numbness in natural teeth, gums, lips, or chin. It’s crucial to seek a highly experienced dentist for the procedure to minimize this risk.
- Sinus Problems: For implants in the upper jaw, there’s a chance they could protrude into the sinus cavities causing complications. This can be mitigated with a sinus lift procedure if needed.
Dental implants have success rate when executed by professionals. However, it’s also important to understand the complications, infections and other potential issues which allow for informed decisions. Always keep an open communication with your dental professionals which will be important in navigating any issues and challenges.
North Eastview Dental is a dedicated family dental center in Guelph, we provide exceptional dental care to patients in Guelph and the surrounding areas. Our experienced team of dental professionals offers a wide range of services, including preventive care, general dentistry, orthodontics, and more. Whether you need a routine cleaning, a filling, or a complex dental procedure, we are here to help. Contact us at email@example.com or call us at 519-824-5070 to schedule an appointment and experience the difference of personalized, compassionate care at Northeastview Dental