Oral health plays a major role in the overall health of people. If there is a problem with the teeth, one cannot chew, speak or breathe properly. All these factors can be serious problems for general health, so oral health must be taken very seriously. Nowadays, people not only care about the health of their teeth but also about aesthetics. With dental implants, patients have the opportunity to achieve both health and beauty, and that is what today’s dentistry is all about.

What are dental implants?

Dental implants are screws that are inserted into the jawbone in the place of the missing tooth. The screw represents the root of the missing tooth and is firmly anchored in the jawbone. A ceramic crown is placed on the screw, which represents the crown of the missing tooth. This entire structure is assembled into a beautiful and strong artificial tooth.

Every missing tooth needs to be replaced

Every tooth in the mouth has a job in chewing and speaking. All teeth, in both jaws, work together in perfect balance. When a tooth is missing, this balance is disturbed. The empty space left after tooth extraction causes the adjacent teeth to lean into that space. This tendency can lead to a variety of problems, including gingivitis, tooth decay and bone loss. This damage is far more severe when a patient has had multiple teeth extracted. To maintain balance in the mouth, a dental patient must replace all missing teeth.

There are 3 main dental implant reconstructions:

1. Replacing a missing tooth – a very common situation. A patient may lose a tooth due to periodontitis or severe caries. You may think that this is not a big deal for your oral health, but this gap that remains after the tooth extraction causes the other teeth to shift and move. For this reason, it is very important to replace a missing tooth. A dental implant is placed in the bone, in the exact location where your natural tooth once was. After the bone has healed, you will receive a ceramic crown that will blend into your mouth with its size, shape, and color.

dental implants
source: http://tomkendental.com/dental-implants-erindale/

2. Replacing several missing teeth in a row – dental bridge on implants. As you may already know, a dental bridge is a construction that replaces missing teeth by using adjacent teeth as anchors. In dentistry, this can pose a problem in several ways. First, some patients have no adjacent teeth because they have lost them as well. Second, a bridge means that the neighboring teeth have to be drilled into, even if they are completely healthy. In the part of the jaw where several teeth are missing, the dentist places several implants that serve as anchors. The number of implants depends on how many teeth are missing. This type of dental implantation can also be performed on dental patients who have lost all teeth in one or both jaws. You will get all this information from your dentist when the full analysis of your oral health is performed.

3. Improving the fit of a loose denture – when a patient has lost all the teeth in one jaw, it is sometimes very difficult to get used to a denture. They are large and can move around in the mouth when chewing or speaking. This is mainly due to severe bone loss after tooth extractions. In this situation, mini-implants can be placed in the jaw. These implants have their place in the denture and provide stability and strength to your bite. A denture is still removable, so you can wash it and put it back in. The stability is much better with this type of dental implant. If you already have a denture that fits, you can reuse it for this procedure.

dental implants
source: https://sherwoodparkdental.ca/ab/sherwood-park/dental-implants/

What is the procedure for dental implants?

Placing dental implants into your bone is always done under local anesthesia. If you are nervous, you may also receive sedation. Your surgeon will explain everything to you, and you will not feel any pain during the procedure. After the surgery, you will have some stitches in your mouth for 7 days. You may need to take pain medication for the first few days after the procedure. After 7 days, the surgeon will remove the stitches and the healing process will begin. Depending on the bone substance, you may have to wait several months to receive a crown or bridge on the implants. During this time, you can have temporary teeth placed, which will allow you to function normally during these months. When healing is complete, a dental expert will make your crowns or bridge in a few weeks.

The types of dental implants:

There are some types of dental implants and techniques that can be used:

endosteal, which is placed in the jawbone when there is enough bone left.

subperiosteal, which means that if the patient does not have enough bone, the implant is placed under the gum.

Are you a candidate for dental implants?

Placing dental implants into the bone is a serious surgical procedure. You must have good oral health (no inflamed gums and adequate bone structure) and good general health. Patients with chronic diseases such as diabetes or immune deficiency are not good candidates for this type of surgery. Smokers and alcohol abusers are also not candidates for dental implants.

After you have your implants and teeth in place, you will need to maintain good oral hygiene. You also need to go for regular dental checkups twice a year. This way, your dental implant can last for the rest of your life.

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