Are you one of the many Americans who have missing teeth? If so, you don’t have to keep putting up with that noticeable gap that stares back at you in the mirror. Dental implants are one of the latest advancements in dental technology—and this modern solution can make your smile as good as new.
Because we take your oral health very seriously we wanted to take the time to answer some of the most common questions that we receive about the dental implants procedure. Here we hope to provide you with the most important information that you need to know about the dental implant process.
On this page, we’ve listed some of the most important things you need to know so that you can make the best decision for restoring your smile.
The 3 Parts of a Dental Implant
While we may simplify the process and say that “a dental implant restores your full tooth,” the truth is that a dental implant restoration is more than just the implant itself. It consists of three parts that work together to restore different parts of your tooth.
These parts are:
- The Implant | A titanium post that is surgically installed into your jawbone. The implant itself replaces just the root of your tooth to stimulate the jawbone and support your new tooth.
- The Abutment | This piece is placed on top of your dental implant as a connector between the implant itself and the tooth restoration on top.
- The Crown or Dental Restoration | This is the visible and biting surface of your new tooth that sits atop the abutment. Dental implants can support a single tooth crown, a dental bridge, or a full set of dentures.
All together, these pieces make a complete implant-supported tooth restoration in your smile.
How Implants Work to Benefit Your Smile
When you understand how the three pieces of a dental implant restoration work together, you can start to see the amazing benefits it gives your smile. Beyond just restoring the look of your teeth, dental implants have a number of aesthetic and health benefits for your whole mouth.
Dental Implants Provide a Natural Look and Feel for Better Support
Implant-supported restorations are designed to function just like your normal teeth! Because the dental implants are securely placed in your jawbone, your new teeth will be securely supported all the way through your jawbone—just like the rest of your natural teeth.
While other dental solutions like dentures or crowns can restore the visibility and some chewing functionality of your teeth, they fall short by being supported only by the gums or by the surrounding teeth. This places stress on the rest of your mouth which can cause your other teeth to wear down faster or shift out of place.
Only dental implants mimic the root of your tooth and provide the support that goes all the way down to your jawbone. With this support your new porcelain tooth is designed to function seamlessly alongside your regular teeth. This means that you can count on dental implants to support you in your daily activities and eating your favorite foods that you love the most.
Dental Implants Strengthen the Jawbone and Mouth Structure
A common misconception about missing teeth is that they only look bad and can make eating more uncomfortable. While this is certainly true, the reality is that there is a lot more at risk for your oral health when you lose your teeth.
Your mouth is like a well-oiled machine. Every part of it is an essential part of an active ecosystem that relies on the proper functioning of the other components. If one part of your oral health fails, other parts will eventually go with it.
When you lose a permanent tooth, the tooth root underneath is no longer supporting and stimulating the nerves of that part of your jawbone. Overtime, this part of your bone can shrink away from lack of use—changing your overall facial structure and causing other teeth to shift out of place at the same time.
A dental implant replaces the tooth root—something traditional dentures or dental bridges don’t do. This means your jawbone can stay strong and supported. After dental implant surgery, the implant fuses with your jawbone, becoming a part of your facial structure while supporting the crown, bridge, dentures that will resume all of the other functions of your original teeth.
Dental Implants Can Last Almost a Lifetime
If you are going to invest in dental implants you are probably asking yourself how long the dental implants last. We’re excited to tell you that dental implants can last an average of 20–25 years or more!
While the implant itself stays secure in your jaw, the tooth restoration on top—your dental crown, bridge, or dentures—may need to be replaced every 10–15 years, however. You will use the replacement tooth or teeth in all of your daily activities including eating, smiling, and speaking.
Those replacement teeth will be made to be strong and durable, but they will still need the consistent care and attention that all of your teeth deserve. Daily brushing and flossing will help to ensure that you maximize the potential lifespan of your replacement crown or crowns.
Dental Implants Are Worth the Cost for Your Long-Term Oral Health
It makes sense to be wary about the cost of dental implants, but the price of ignoring the missing tooth in your mouth can end up being much more expensive in the long run.
As we mentioned, your teeth rely on the others surrounding them to maintain their proper position, and your jawbone relies on your teeth to support your facial structure and keep you chewing properly so you can keep your nutrition up.
If you don’t take care of your missing tooth, then your mouth will suffer the consequences of a jawbone shrinkage and shifting teeth. These problems can lead to many trips to the dental office to fix the resulting damage. These additional expenses will not be necessary if you simply decide to get implants to fix your teeth and support your oral health right away!
Who Is a Candidate for Dental Implants?
Although we’ll do our best to help everyone restore their beautiful smile, not everyone qualifies for dental implants. Some patients will need to use an alternate method to replace their teeth.
Because inserting dental implants is a dental surgery, you must be in a healthy position to make sure that your body can handle the procedure and heal properly afterwards.
Any of the following can be a potential problem for receiving implants:
- If you have diabetes or an autoimmune disorder that prohibits effective healing.
- Patients that are active smokers.
- Any patient that has severe periodontal disease—periodontitis.
- Lack of sufficient bone density.
Even if these conditions describe you, it’s still important to consult with one of our skilled dentists to make an appropriate determination. You may be able to qualify for a bone graft to make up for lower bone density in your jaw, for example.
Where Can I Find Dental Implants in Las Vegas?
Do you still have other questions about dental implants? We have the answers that you are looking for here at Wagner Dental!
If you are looking for an experienced dentist who does dental implants, we can help you to accomplish the goal of restoring your smile. Our dentists have decades of proven experience and we are the clear choice for dental implants. Give our office a call today at (702) 878-5599 to discover what our dentists can do for your smile.