Would you like to find out if dental implants are an option for your tooth replacement? In this blog, our Taber dentists discuss what dental implants are including their advantages and disadvantages.
What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are permanent replacements for missing teeth. They are kept in place with a very small titanium rod that is implanted into the jaw bone of a patient, the implant acts as the root of an artificial tooth.
Dentists use titanium because this kind of metal is able to bond with the bone. Titanium implants are secure and stable tooth replacements. The dentist then caps the dental implant with a dental crown, that looks very similar to a natural tooth.
Together, the implant and the cap look and function just like your natural tooth.
The Advantages of Dental Implants
There are several advantages to dental implants such as:
Dental implants can be used to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth, or all teeth in the upper or lower jaw. We can combine implants with other treatment options such as a bridge or denture.
Your specific case and requirements, in addition to the density of your jaw bone, will determine the number of actual implants you need/can get. Dental implants are a popular option for many patients as they have many potential configurations.
Provided you properly care for your dental implant, it can last a lifetime. A proper at-home oral care routine is a must, as are regular visits to your dental office for cleanings and exams.
Other factors including nutrition, genetics, or the development of dental diseases can also impact the longevity of your dental implant.
Natural Look Feel & Appearance
As we discussed above, your dental implant will be paired with a crown or bridge that will function and look like a natural tooth.
People shouldn't be able to notice that you have artificial teeth. You will also be able to speak, eat, and function as you did in the past while getting to enjoy a quality of life. Because there aren't any nerves in a dental implant, you won't be able to feel any sensations.
Instead, any feelings you experience related to your dental implant will actually come from the soft tissue around the implant. After your implant has healed and you’ve gotten used to it, you most likely will notice very little difference between your implant and your natural teeth.
Easy to Care For
Similar to bridges, crowns, or other restorations, you can care for your dental implants just like your natural teeth. They’ll need thorough brushing and flossing, and your dentist will need to check them during your regular exams.
The possible disadvantages of Dental Implants
Based on the nature of your case, dental implants might not be a good choice for you. Below we discuss several aspects of dental implants you might need to consider:
While dental implants may look and feel somewhat more natural than dental bridges, the dental implant process is lengthier and more invasive.
Depending on your treatment plan and your specific case, the entire dental implant procedure can take anywhere from 2 to 9 months to complete.
Depending on your insurance coverage and your specific dental issue, the cost of dental implants can vary. While some insurance companies pay part of the cost, others may cover the entire cost of your implants and still, others may not pay for any part of it.
Check with your insurance provider to learn whether your insurance plan will cover your treatment.
In combination with the factors detailed above, you might have enough density in your jaw bone for your dental implant treatment to be successful. If not, you could still be a candidate for this treatment but will need a bone graft to transplant bone to your jaw so the implant can be supported. This will make the process more invasive and longer.
How to Find Out if Dental Implants or Other Options are Right for You
While dental implants, bridges, and other restorations all have their benefits, the right choice for you will depend on your oral health needs, budget, and other factors.
Ultimately, you’ll need to discuss your case with your dentist to find out which tooth-replacement option would work best for you.