What Are Dental Implants and How Do They Work?
If you’re thinking about getting dental implants, it’s important that you have a thorough understanding of what they are and what they do before you make the investment. They can be costly but for most people the outcome is more than worth the price tag, especially when compared to the results offered by other treatment options.
These items are offered to patients in need of a tooth replacement. Rather than getting bridges, partials, or dentures, implants provide a long-lasting alternative that can hold up just as well as natural teeth. There’s no extra maintenance or care needed. Once an implant has been placed, it functions like your other teeth because it has the support of the jaw bone behind it.
Besides looking and feeling like the real thing, these teeth help to prevent the breakdown of the jaw bone that often happens when you have teeth missing. While they are often thought of for use in the replacement of single teeth, they can also be used to replace several teeth or used to act as anchors for a partial or dentures, giving both a more solid foundation onto which to attach.
Let’s take a look at some of these applications for dental implants and how they may apply to your current situation.
These dental implants can be used to replace single or multiple teeth. When you have a tooth extracted you might feel self-conscious about the hole that’s made and what people will think of you. However, an implant can make a real difference in your life. A post is surgically implanted in your jaw bone. This is allowed to heal, then a tooth is screwed into the post. From there, you will just need to take care of it like a regular tooth.
The posts are made out of titanium, and through a process called osseointegration, the post fuses with the bone. This is what makes the new tooth so stable and reliable as a tooth replacement.
As a Post for Dentures or Partials
Dental implants can also be used to secure partials or dentures. If you’re missing many teeth, especially molars, it may be necessary (or at least a very good idea) to place an implant or two. They are placed in the same manner as though you were replacing a single tooth. However, they are placed with the intention of using them as a post to attach a partial or full denture. This gives the partial more stability and leads to a stronger and more natural bite.
Why Osseointegration is Important
As you already know, osseointegration occurs when the jawbone fuses with the titanium post of an implant. You also know this makes the new teeth stronger. However, what you may not know is how this benefits your overall health. You see, this fusing process helps to prevent bone loss. Bone loss is inevitable when you have a tooth or teeth pulled and a bridge placed. Without a tooth there, the jawbone will begin to deteriorate. With an implant is placed, however, the bone won’t waste away since it’s still filled in with titanium.
The course of treatment you choose will largely depend on your personal preferences, what your dentist believes is the best fit for you, and your budget. However, just know that having dental implants placed is a significant investment. Yes, they can be pricey, but they improve your oral health, maintain your natural bite, and make for a more attractive appearance. They improve your life in every way.