Missing teeth can lower your self-esteem and leave you reluctant to share your smile. Gaps in your teeth can also have serious consequences for your oral health, including bite misalignment, tooth decay, and bone resorption. If you are considering your missing teeth options, you may be asking, ‘what are dental implants, and am I a candidate for this procedure?’
Dental implants are a natural-looking and permanent missing tooth restorative solution. Dental implants can be used to replace individual missing teeth or an entire dental arch. The ideal candidate for dental implants is in good oral and overall health is a non-smoker and is willing to undergo lengthy treatment.
Discover more about the dental implant procedure and the benefits of receiving this revolutionary dental restoration.
What are Dental Implants
Dental implants consist of three parts: small titanium or ceramic threaded rod, an abutment that connects the implant to the prosthetic, and a dental crown, denture, or bridge. The metal rod is surgically placed in a patient’s jaw. These implant posts act as anchors for prosthetics that look and function like real teeth.
Dental implants are often a good option for patients who have problems with ill-fitting bridges or dentures, have trouble eating certain foods with their current prosthetic or missing teeth, or find other forms of prosthetic teeth uncomfortable.
What are Dental Implants? Dental Implant Benefits
There are several benefits to choosing a dental implant over other dental prostheses, from improved aesthetics to increased functionality.
A dental implant’s titanium post is permanent. The metal fuses with your jawbone and gum tissue through a process called osseointegration. These dental implant posts can last decades and have a five-year survival rate above 96%. Prosthetic teeth do not get cavities like regular teeth and can last 15-20 years without any issues.
Restore normal function
Unlike dentures and bridges, which can slip when you speak and require a change in diet, dental implants function similarly to your natural teeth and can restore normal function. Dental implants fuse with the jawbone, giving the prosthetic teeth stability and strength. You can speak, chew, bite, and eat just like you did with your natural teeth.
Dental implants are indistinguishable from natural teeth. Your Available Dental Care dentist precisely matches the dental restoration to the colour of your remaining teeth to give you a realistic smile. With proper care and maintenance and avoiding pigmented food and drinks and tobacco, they can retain their natural look for years.
A dental implant is a more expensive upfront than other prosthetic options like bridges or dentures. The implant itself is made of medical-grade titanium, and it requires several surgical procedures to fully install.
However, dental implants are more durable and long-lasting than other prosthetics and end up being a more affordable option in the long run because they don’t require frequent repair or replacement.
Am I a Candidate for Dental Implants?
If you have missing or damaged teeth, you could be a candidate for dental implants. However, patients with insufficient jawbone density or thickness may not be ideal candidates for dental implants.
During your initial consultation, your dentist takes digital images of your jaw to determine the bone tissue quality. They may recommend a bone graft or sinus lift before your implants can be placed.
Patients with certain autoimmune diseases such as type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, or oral autoimmune disease may be ineligible for dental implants. These patients’ immune systems may recognise the titanium implant post as a foreign body and reject it, preventing the jawbone from fusing with the implant.
Immunocompromised patients with HIV, Crohn’s disease, patients undergoing chemotherapy, and recipients of organ transplants should also discuss potential side effects of dental implant surgery with their dentist. A dental implant could interfere with your medications, resulting in implant failure.
Dental Implant Procedure
It takes several surgical procedures to place a dental implant in your jaw. During the implant surgery, your dentist incises the gum tissue to expose the jawbone underneath. They drill a small hole in the jaw and screw the implant into place before suturing the site closed.
Over the next six to eight weeks, bone and gum tissue grows around the implant. After the implant has fused with the post, your dentist reopens the gum tissue to place the abutment. They close the gum tissue around but not over the implant. Finally, the prosthetic tooth, bridge, or dentures will be attached to the implant.
Placing a dental implant is usually an outpatient surgery, and pain medicine will be administered for your comfort. Sedation is also available for anxious patients, ranging from nitrous oxide to twilight sedation using a mild dose of intravenous general anaesthesia.
The procedure will be different for every patient, but your dentist will walk you through the steps you need to take and what would be involved in your dental implant procedure.
Contact Available Dental Care for High-Quality Implants
If you are ready to restore your smile and are wondering what are dental implants, contact Available Dental Care at (02) 4062 8763 or use our convenient online form to book your consultation.
Note: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.
A systematic review of the 5-year survival and complication rates of implant-supported single crowns
Implant treatment in the edentulous maxillae: a 15-year follow-up study on 76 consecutive patients provided with fixed prostheses
Dental implants in patients suffering from autoimmune diseases: A systematic critical review
Dental implants in immunocompromised patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis