Are Dental Implants For You?

When you have missing teeth, and desire a permanent replacement for the lost teeth, dental implants are the best solution. Dental implants are titanium metal ‘screws’ or replacements for tooth roots. They are meant to give support to dental prosthesis such as crowns, dental bridges and even dentures.

Titanium is mostly the choice of material for implants as they provide excellent biocompatibility and ‘osseo-integration’ with bone tissue and are known to attract bone-forming cells to better adapt themselves within the bone. This gives them excellent support within bone hence to the restoration they are meant to support.

When getting implants and having implant dentistry, the condition, quality and quantity of bone present is assessed by your dental surgeon and special care is taken to ensure that the inferior alveolar nerve (in the case of a mandibular implant) or a sinus (in the case of a maxillary implant) is not damaged in anyway. Space is created within the bone with hand osteotomes or drills for receipt of the implant. Once the implant is seated within the bone, it is allowed to heal for some time. When healed, the implant is now ready for supporting a restoration such as a crown. Healing time varies in implant dentistry with age and factors such as severity of the situation and the patient’s personal care such as maintenance of oral hygiene.

Factors like quality and quantity of bone are crucial to be considered when receiving implant dentistry. If the bone present is not enough or is too thin, a bone graft may be required to compensate for the lack of present bone tissue. Other factors like what kind of prosthesis is to be made are considered. This determines the size, length and diameter of the implant to be placed.

After having an implant placed, the patient must take very good care of the treated area as any non-compliance could cause failure or damage to the implant and surrounding bone. Smoking delays healing, so smoking must be stopped under all circumstances. Immediately after surgical placement of the implants, sucking on a straw, chewing hard food and any other activities that may cause more bleeding or further injury are highly contraindicated.

The long-term success rate of implants in implant dentistry is very high given that patients comply with all the given care instructions. Implants provide an excellent, permanent solution to missing teeth and the restorations that they support are highly successful in re-establishing the functional integrity of teeth. Always be sure to maintain good oral hygiene during and after implant treatment, and you can have the joys of re-establishing your perfect smile and chewing abilities for the rest of your life!