dental implant tooth replacement
Nothing makes a human more self-conscious than a missing tooth. See, a missing tooth draws people’s attention to you and this means that you will have to put up with numerous gazes and stare every time you walk out of the house. This is why Americans always strive hard to replace their missing teeth as soon as possible and fortunately for them, dental implants are available.
Although relatively old in the dental industry, dental implants really began getting attention in the turn of the millennium and before then, they were regarded as a rich man’s solution. Today, dental implants are available in dentists’ offices across the country and accessing them is very quick and hassle-free.
So, what are dental implants? Why are they the preferred replacement for missing teeth? Why should one opt for dental implants over the other available options? Here is a look at dental implants and everything you need to know about them;
What is a dental implant?
A dental implant is an artificial root fitted into the jawbone to act as an anchor for a prosthetic tooth replacement. It is a faux root which is surgically placed in your mouth to anchor a crown, bridge or full denture. The dental implant is made of titanium and is cemented into position to ensure that it is stable and sturdy enough to replicate missing teeth.
There are 3 different types of dental implants used in modern day dentistry. Here is a look at these 3 types of dental implants;
- Sub-periosteal implants – these consist of a metal frame that is fitted onto the jawbone just below the gum tissue. As the gums heal, the frame becomes fixed to the jawbone. Posts, which are attached to the frame, protrude through the gums. As with endosteal implants, artificial teeth are then mounted to the posts.
- Endosteal implants– these are surgically implanted directly into the jawbone. Once the surrounding gum tissue has healed, a second surgery is needed to connect a post to the original implant. Finally, an artificial tooth (or teeth) is attached to the post-individually, or grouped on a bridge or denture.
- Mini–implants- Well, although they aren’t quite regarded as a type of implant, they are quite different in a way and it is only fair that they get a special mention. These implants are miniature in size and far smaller than the traditional implants. The orientation and design is almost similar to the traditional implants only that the size of implants is greatly reduced to make them more effective.
Why choose dental implants over the other tooth replacement options?
Long before dental implants grew in popularity, people preferred replacements like dentures and removable abutments. Fast forward to today and people will choose the dental implants over any of the available options and here are some of the reasons why this is the case;
Dental implants are permanent. Once they are fully integrated into the jawbone, they can’t be removed except in special cases. They are permanent and once a crown is attached, they will replicate the functionality of natural teeth. You don’t have to worry about removing them when eating or when going to bed.
The other factor that makes these implants better than the other options is the fact that they offer better longevity than the other options. When well taken care of, an implant can last well over 30 years. The longest removable dentures can last is probably 5 years.
Once they properly heal, dental implants don’t require any sophisticated care. All you need to do, is to maintain a good oral hygiene and they are good to go. Keeping them clean ensures that there are no food remnants building up under the crown which can lead to infections and loss of the implants.
Considering how well they replicate natural teeth and the longevity they offer, dental implants are a very economical solution to missing teeth. The initial cost might be higher than the cost of the other alternatives but when you factor in other variables like maintenance and the number of years you will be using the implants, they are nothing but economical. You get full value for every cent you pay for them.