Dependent upon, which tooth is lost either through a dental extraction or accidental impact, missing teeth can effect your confidence while also effecting the way you eat. This is particularly relevant in those with several missing teeth. As a result from the empty gap left from a missing tooth, the surrounding teeth may also be susceptible to movement, which can potentially cause shifting and alignment issues due to the lack of support.
There are several options to replacing missing teeth. These may include dental bridges or dentures. With innovative advancements in technology dental implants have become an increasingly popular solution towards tooth replacement.
Why get a dental implant?
Dental implants are a tooth replacement procedure that replaces the root of your tooth with a titanium metal screw post. An abutment is then attached to the post which is encapsulated with a porcelain ceramic crown. Due to the complexities and processes involved, dental implants are regarded as the best form of tooth replacement.
Dental implants are generally recommended for adults since they’re jawbones have generally fully grown. Patients often require adequate bone growth and bone health. This helps particularly in the healing stages since implants encourage bone growth to fuse onto the dental implant with appropriate healing.
As dental implants require a surgical procedure there are several medical health eligibility requirements. Dentists will discuss in confidentiality whether a patient is suitable for implant treatment.
Patients often get dental implants for;
- Missing teeth
- Cracked or damaged teeth
- Complete empty wide gaps between teeth
- Tooth decay and gum disease
What are the advantages of tooth implants?
They have a natural appearance and are unnoticeable amongst neighbouring teeth. Dental implants are surgically anchored into your jawbone. Therefore they feel just as strong as natural teeth. The visible part of an implant which is known as the crown is shaded specifically to match the natural colour of your surrounding teeth.
- Better comfort and speech
Often with poorly fitted dentures, dentures may slip and move, which may cause people to slur and mumble words. Because they are fixed into the jawbone, dental implants are more comfortable and durable than other tooth replacement alternatives. This also allows the patient to chew much harder, similar to the feeling of natural teeth.
- Easy Maintenance
Caring for an implant is the same as natural teeth. As they are permanent, there is no need for additional removal for cleaning or adjustments. The permanent tooth replacement procedure poses no risk of dislodging teeth.
Implants are the most durable form of tooth replacement. They have a tendency to last the longest since they are not removable. Therefore implants are less likely to be dropped or misplaced. The post of a dental implant also lasts a lifetime, while the crown or bridge (tooth cap) may need to be replaced every 10-15 years. They’re less likely to require additional future dental procedures. With good oral care and regular dental check-ups, dental implants have a reputation of lasting a lifetime for the patient.
- Helps Prevents Bone Loss or weakening
Tooth loss can often cause the bone within the empty gap to weaken. This can also contribute towards the decrease in structural bone support for adjacent teeth. Dental implants help to stimulate bone growth, emulating the root of a natural tooth. As a result dental implants prevent bone loss from occurring from missing teeth.
What are the disadvantages of dental implants?
As implants require a surgical procedure, there is more extensive planning and healing involved than compared to other teeth replacement alternatives. Combining the expert requirements in dental surgery, surgical guide pre-planning, the process to fabricate the components of the implant, the total of a dental implant procedure might be expensive for some patients. Costs for a single tooth implant average $4,500-$5,500 varying upon factors specific to the patients needs.
- Treatment Length
The treatment times for dental implants can be quite lengthy with multiple appointments required. Phases include, first consult, pre-surgical digital planning, implant surgery, healing time, then fitting of the tooth cap. The entire treatment, can vary anywhere between 3-5 months depending upon healing.
- Infection Risks
Just like any medical surgical procedure, dental implants can pose potential risks. Although complications are rare it is possible for gums to become infected post surgery.
- Gum Risks
There is a potential risk of damage or injury to surrounding nerves and gum. Although surgeons aim to provide gentle procedures at all times, nerves are extremely complex. Unfortunately nerve issues can at times be unforeseeable by dentists.
- Sinus Issues
Varying upon where an upper jaw dental implant is located and patients bone structure, some implants may cause sinus problems. Your dentist will discuss with you thoroughly in regards to the sensitivities of operating on such areas.
What are the other options for missing teeth replacement?
Alternatively if patients do not opt to go ahead with a dental implant. Other options include dentures or a dental bridge. Dentures are removable and have various types, such as acrylic, flexible or chrome. While a dental bridge, is a fixed ceramic crown that covers the area of several missing teeth.
Both alternatives are more cost effective than dental implants, but vary in costs between the options involved.
How to get started with dental implant treatment?
Understanding the processes involved behind dentistry implants allows you to assess whether this form of treatment method is suitable for you. It allows you to also compare the options for dentures or a dental bridge to help fix missing teeth.
If you’re apprehensive about costs, we provide a FREE initial consultation with our teeth implant specialists. This allows us the opportunity to thoroughly examine what treatment method would be most suitable for you and provide an personalized quote specific to your needs. Dental payment plans are also available.