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Dental Implants are a Fixed and Lifelong Answer to Replace Lost Teeth

The concept of replacing a lost tooth with an implant is centuries old.

The concept of replacing a lost tooth with an implant is centuries old. There is documented proof of ancient cultures inserting seashells into gums to replace missing teeth. Fortunately since the middle of the last century a far more practical and less painful method was invented when titanium dental implants were first introduced. This form of dentistry is viewed as artificial replacement and is often considered a cosmetic procedure as well.

This procedure is viewed by some as cosmetic and others as a prosthesis replacement which often causes confusion. Filling a gap does enhance a face but essentially it stabilizes the oral bone structure.

Tooth decay, bad hygiene and trauma are just some of the ways people lose their teeth. The gaps left by these losses are unappealing and can age a face. Gaps in the mouth eventually cause masticating problems. People who are generally healthy and who have looked after their teeth may experience a 100% success rate when undergoing an implant. However in patients who smoke heavily or diabetics the success rates drop dramatically and many dentists may refuse to perform the procedure.

Dental implants can be performed on anyone even young adults their bone development has stopped. The root and screw to which a crown will be attached are entirely constructed from titanium. Titanium is very rarely rejected by the body and is therefore ideal for any artificial replacements.

Before dental work is performed the patient’s jawbone, gums and teeth are extensively examined. X-rays of underlying nerve and sinus structures are taken to determine bone height and density. Patients with inadequate bone height and gum tissue may have to undergo an augmentation grafting before a dental implant procedure can be performed.

Information on various options and procedures is discussed and the dentist will then determine what route to follow for the best results. A titanium root is constructed to specifications of the tooth root it will replace to ensure a precise fit. This root, once implanted will require a period to bond with the jawbone. The bonding period could be as long as six months.

The root is inserted through a small hole drilled into the jawbone and the area closed and left to heal. The insertion procedure requires skill and assistance of either X-rays or CT scan to guide the dentist in order to avoid irreparable nerve damage. After bonding has completed an abutment is screwed into the root and a temporary crown is created. Eventually a permanent ceramic or porcelain crown will replace the temporary one.

Dental implants give patients complete oral function immediately after the procedure is completed. They will find that they are able to talk and eat without any tooth movement as the implant is securely affixed. A comprehensive overall oral hygiene regime is required to ensure that natural and implanted teeth stay healthy. If well cared for implants will last up to 40 years. Patients may find that their gums and teeth are swollen and suffer discomfort after this procedure but it is minor. It is essential that a person ensure they consult a dentist that is well qualified to perform implanting before having any work done.

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