Dental implants are becoming a more popular alternative to simply wearing dentures for a couple of missing teeth. People lose teeth all the time due to various factors, it could be injury, illness or even just tooth decay. A large gap where a tooth used to be can look both unsightly and can affect a person’s confidence greatly. Therefore cosmetic dentists are offering the option of dental implants to patients with missing teeth more so than the traditional denture.
What is a dental implant?
Dental implants are a man-made substitute for a root; the substitute normally comes in the form of a metal rod that is drilled into the jawbone of the patient. This rod acts as the anchor for an artificial tooth. Dentures can actually be placed on top of the rod which eliminates the need for denture fixing paste or gel. Crowns or bridges can also be fixed on to dental implants.
What are the advantages of dental implants?
Less bone loss
Dental implants reduce bone loss, because your teeth protect the jaw bone. Therefore when the teeth are missing the bone is without protection. This can mean that eventually the overall shape of the jaw can change over time. If you just lose one tooth, then the change will obviously not be that drastic. However the loss of several teeth can have a significant effect on how the jaw bone appears, thus changing the shape of the face. Dental implants reduce the loss of bone under the gums as they serve as a substitute for the original root and the false tooth serves as a substitute for the original tooth.
Ease of use
Once a dental implant is in place, they are just as easy to use as a real tooth. They should look and feel real as well, as they are fixed to the gum at the root.
Easier to clean
They don’t need any kind of special cleaning implements, pastes or gels. They only require regular brushing and flossing. Thus saving time and money, they are overall more hygienic.
If you go to a professional who knows exactly what they are doing, dental implants should look like the real thing; therefore eliminating self-consciousness.
Who can have dental implants?
Implants can be provided to anyone, the jawbone has to be completely developed in order to have them fitted.
There are some cases whereby dental implants would not be advisable. Those are the following:
* Chain smokers- affects healing of the gums
* Alcoholics- affects the healing of the gums
* People with gum disease or who suffer from it regularly-
How long do they last?
Dental implants can last as long as you want them. If you look after them well then they could last as long as a genuine tooth could last. However the general guideline for how long they last is 30 years.