Life’s simple pleasures can cause problems and pain for the millions of adults who suffer from permanent tooth loss. Men and women of all ages are self-conscious about their dentures, bridges or missing teeth. Some have difficulty speaking because their dentures slip or click. For others, the irritation and pain caused by dentures are constant reminders of the limitations they feel. Many are concerned about their appearance and may feel that their tooth loss has “aged them” before their time. Some regularly decline invitations to social events because they are unwilling to face the uncertainties of eating, speaking and laughing in public. Many can no longer enjoy their favorite foods, nor the social interaction with family and friends that accompanies special meals. Now, more and more people are putting an end to these problems by choosing dental implants, a revolutionary way to replace missing teeth. Dental implants offer an excellent alternative to the limitations of conventional dentures, bridges and missing teeth. Dental implants are changing the way people live. With them, people are rediscovering the comfort and confidence to eat, speak, laugh and enjoy life.
A national survey found that patient interest and demand has grown significantly. The survey found:
Leading reasons cited for choosing dental implants are:
According to the survey, the reasons for the increased demand are: Growing public awareness of the significant functional and aesthetic advantages of dental implants over conventional dentures and bridges The availability of data on the long-term success of dental implants Experts predict that the demand for the procedure will continue to grow as people become more familiar with the benefits of dental implants.
Dental implants are a great option for patients missing natural teeth, because they act as a secure anchor for artificial replacement teeth and eliminate the instability associated with surface adhesives and removable bridges. Your natural teeth absorb biting pressure of up to 540 lbs. per square inch. Long-time denture-wearers can often absorb no more than 50 lbs. per square inch. Dental implants, when properly placed, can withstand 450 lbs. per square inch of biting pressure. Dental implants are made of materials that are compatible with human bone and tissue. The implants are surgically placed directly into or on top of the jawbone. Small posts are then attached to the implants which protrude through the gums. These posts provide stable anchors for artificial replacement teeth. Dental Implants Fit Patient Needs A graphic picture of dental implant locks in place over the protruding post.Based on patient needs, a single tooth, a partial bridge or a full set of replacement teeth are fitted to the implants and lock in place over the protruding posts. In appearance and in function, implants are the closest thing to natural teeth and a good alternative to conventional dentures. Implants eliminate the day-to-day frustrations and pain of ill-fitting dentures. They allow people to enjoy a healthy and varied diet without the restrictions many denture-wearers face. With a sense of renewed self-confidence, many people rediscover the excitement of an active life-style shared with family and friends and the chance to speak dearly and comfortably with co-workers. For all these reasons, people with dental implants often say they feel better … they look better … they live better.
We can determine if you are a candidate for dental implants. You will be evaluated based upon a number of things including dental health, life-style, jawbone quality and oral hygiene habits. We then plan your dental implant treatment program. Dental implant surgery is often done in office. In some cases, the procedure is done in a hospital or ambulatory surgery center. In any event, we can determine the most appropriate setting based on your individual needs. A Two-Phase Procedure For most patients, the placement of dental implants involves two surgical procedures. First, the implants are surgically placed into or on top of your jawbone. These small devices make up the framework needed to securely hold replacement teeth. For the first three to six months following surgery, the implants are beneath the surface of the gums, gradually bonding with the jawbone. During this time, you should be able to wear temporary dentures and eat a soft diet. Some patients do report minor pain and swelling immediately after the procedure but most experience no change in their daily routines. While the implants are bonding with the jawbone, new replacement teeth are fashioned by your dentist The replacement teeth must clip onto the implants, fit securely in the mouth and withstand the day-to-day movement and pressure created by chewing and speaking. So, it is important that they are created by a dentist with proper training in restorative techniques. Once the implants have bonded to the jawbone, the second phase of the procedure begins. At this time, we uncovers the implants and attach small posts which will act as anchors for the artificial teeth. The posts protrude through the gum line but are not visible when artificial teeth are attached. The entire process, from evaluation to completion, generally takes four to eight months. During this time, most patients do not experience any disruption in their normal business and social activities. Because dental implants are made of materials that are compatible with human bone, there is little chance for an allergic reaction in the body. However, implants can fail when proper oral hygiene techniques are not used. Dental implants require special individual care. Proper brushing, flossing, rinsing and regular check-ups are critical to the long-term success of your implants.
Though dental implants are a relatively simple procedure, they generally warrant the expertise of a dentist. Working as a team, we can determine if you are a candidate for implants and design an appropriate treatment plan. A restorative dentist, with training in dental implants, creates the replacement teeth. He or she prepares the necessary molds and works with a dental laboratory to make sure that the denture or bridge will meet the particular needs of each patient. Additionally, dental implant patients should see a dentist for routine follow-up care and maintenance.
If you are among the millions of Americans who suffer from permanent tooth loss, you can eliminate the problems and pain caused by dentures, bridges or missing teeth. You can begin to rediscover the joy of eating healthy, speaking clearly and laughing comfortably. Take the first step. Get the facts about dental implants. See your dentist or come in for a complimentary consultation. We can determine if dental implants are right for you.