What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are dental devices to provide a foundation for permanent, prosthetic replacement teeth. Dental implants are a long-term solution for patients who want to replace missing or damaged teeth or have chronic dental problems caused by poor oral health.
Dental implants are an increasingly popular choice for patients. In fact, 3 million Americans have dental implants, and that number grows by almost 500,000 patients every year! Dental implants are such a popular treatment option because they last much longer than other types of prosthetic dental restorations, like dentures. They also do not require the partial removal of healthy tooth structure, as in the case of dental bridges.
Dental implants can be used to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth, or a full upper and/or lower set of teeth. During the implant procedure, a titanium post is surgically implanted into the jaw where it will fuse into the jawbone. Once fused, a replacement tooth, called a crown, is installed on to the titanium post. This crown is made of porcelain and looks and functions just natural teeth.
According to the American Association of Implant Dentistry, over 35 million Americans are missing a tooth in one or both jaws. The American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons also estimates that by the time most Americans turn 75, over 25 percent will have lost all their natural teeth.
Dental implants can restore the look of natural teeth and provide a high level of functionality. Dental implants look great, perform well, and lost the rest of your life time.
Why Do I Need Dental Implants?
Some people may wonder why they should bother getting dental implants or replacing their missing teeth at all. Missing teeth can impair your ability to chew and speak. Missing teeth can also change how you look- causing you to look older, unhealthy, and less attractive. Missing teeth will also change the balance of your bite.
Missing teeth can also lead to many very serious oral and systemic health problems, including poor nutrition, low self-esteem, avoidance of social situations, and an increased risk of diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular diseases.
Although dentures are a popular method for replacing missing teeth, they present their own set of problems for many people, including reduced chewing ability, sore gums, decreased bone health, and near-constant slipping and clicking. Dentures also require a lot of daily maintenance and also need replacing as you age.
For patients who have suffered tooth loss, dental implants offer the most complete, permanent, and natural looking option for tooth replacement.