At some point in almost everyone’s life, a tooth needs to be removed. It may be damaged in an accident, or it may decay and come out on its own or with help from a dentist. Sometimes a dentist needs to remove a crooked tooth to create space for others. When you find yourself missing a tooth for any reason, your dentist may consider replacing it with dental implants.
There are many reasons to replace teeth that are missing. Most people are concerned with how a missing tooth makes them look. It may also become difficult to eat your favorite foods if a tooth is missing. Furthermore, when there is a space, your other teeth may begin to shift out of alignment to fill the missing gap. This can cause problems with your bite and result in jaw pain.
To prevent long-term problems, it is best to replace any missing teeth as soon as possible. Over time, the supporting jaw bone begins to deteriorate when there is no tooth to hold in. This causes a drastic change in your appearance. As time goes by, less supportive bone remains making it all the more difficult to have an implant fitted. The longer you wait, the fewer options you may have.
A dental implant is a titanium post that is embedded into your gum. It functions just as the root of your tooth would, and firmly anchors in a replacement tooth which is added later. They’re very durable, but you must take care of them like you would a natural tooth. This means keeping the prosthetic clean by brushing and flossing and regularly visiting your dentist for check-ups.
If you are facing this type of tooth replacement, you may wonder what the procedure entails. Your dental professional will create a space for the implant in your jaw bone. This is done by using a special dental drill that your dentist is very experienced with. Using x-rays, the exact location for it will be determined and the titanium implant will be fitted.
After it is implanted, you must allow a number of months to pass for bone to form around the implant. This way, it will be supported almost as strongly as your natural tooth. If an artificial tooth is attached to the implant too soon, you may not get the result you’d hoped to achieve. The healing process will be monitored closely by your dental professional.
Once the professional has determined that the implant is bonded strongly to the jaw, you will be fitted with the artificial tooth. This may be a porcelain replica of your old tooth, a bridge, or other type of prosthetic tooth. Your dentist will decide what will work best for you. This may be permanently fixed or removable, depending on your unique situation.
Replacing a missing tooth or teeth has benefits beyond your appearance. It’s important for your overall health, too. Missing teeth can affect what foods you eat, how your face and jaw feels and how you interact with others. A healthy smile brings confidence. Dental implants are a way to accomplish your healthiest smile.