If you have one or more missing teeth, you might be a good candidate for dental implants. Implants are a state-of-the-art tooth replacement technology that can restore your smile and ensure that you maintain the health of your teeth as well as your jawbone. If you are missing a tooth, ask your periodontist about the possibility of implants.
Who Can Benefit from Dental Implants?
Anyone who has missing teeth could benefit from dental implants. With implants, your smile will be restored, and the new tooth or teeth will help your other teeth remain in proper position. The artificial root of the implant also helps ensure your jawbone remains healthy, preventing the “shrunken” look common to many people who no longer have their natural teeth.
Some conditions or situations can make it difficult for you to heal properly after an implant procedure. These include:
- Autoimmune disorders
- Nicotine use
- Gum disease
- Insufficient jawbone mass
If you have any of these issues, be sure to discuss them with your periodontist. You might require treatment before you can be considered for implants, such as bone grafts, a sinus lift, or treatment for your gum disease. If you have an autoimmune disorder or diabetes, or if you are taking certain medications to treat your osteoporosis, you might not be a good candidate for implants.
Having Dental Implants Placed
An implant procedure usually proceeds in two phases. First, the root portion of the implant is set directly into the jawbone. The root is shaped like a screw and is made of titanium or a metal alloy that contains titanium. Bone will naturally bond to titanium, creating a permanent integration between your jaw and the implant. This bond helps stimulate growth in the jawbone, preventing eventual atrophy.
After the root has healed, the prosthetic tooth is set in place. If you have implants placed to support a removable denture, you might be able to have your teeth put in place at the same time as your implant procedure. If you are missing teeth and want to find out if implants are a good choice, talk to our prosthodontist.