Individuals who have lost teeth often find this to be a very embarrassing situation and are eager to take steps to replace the teeth that they have lost and bring back their original, beautiful smile.
While dentures were the most popular choice among individuals in this situation until recently, dental implants are quickly becoming the preferred method of replacing lost teeth and restoring the full function of a person’s mouth.
With dental implants installed, an individual can speak and eat like normal without ever having to worry about removing their teeth to clean them or replace them like they would have to do if they relied on dentures.
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The average dentist probably doesn’t handle this type of procedure, but will instead work with a periodontist in order to provide patients with their new teeth. It is also important to keep in mind that not everyone is a good candidate for implant dentistry. In order for the implants to be successful, an individual will need to have enough bone to support the new teeth and have healthy gums. Finally, a person should keep in mind that not all insurance plans cover implant dentistry and it can be more expensive than some of the alternatives that are available.
When it comes to the actual implant themselves, there are generally two types that are used by the vast majority of dentists. There are endosteal and subperiosteal, although endosteal is the more common of the two. Initially, the doctor will drill a small hole into the jaw bone of the patient and install a screw. After this, the individual will need to wait anywhere from 2 to 6 months as new bone grows around the implant, making it stable enough to support the artificial tooth. Of course, an individual will have the option of using a temporary tooth during this period.
Although generally considered to be a permanent solution to tooth loss, it is important that an individual maintain good dental hygiene in order to prevent gum disease even though their new teeth are not at risk for developing cavities like natural teeth are. It will still be necessary for an individual to receive regular dental checkups and it may be necessary to have the teeth replaced after 10 to 20 years.
Because dental implants do not move around the way dentures or bridges can, they do not pose a risk to the surrounding teeth and will not cause gum recession or bone loss.
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