It is not uncommon for people to lose teeth, especially as they get older. This can be for a variety of reasons, such as decay, disease or accidents.
Dental implants are becoming an increasingly popular alternative to more traditional methods of replacing lost teeth, such as bridges, where a false tooth is supported by the teeth at either side, or dentures.
Implants are placed in the gum to replace the roots. Once in place, they fuse to the bone, therefore becoming permanent. Crowns, which can be either temporary or permanent, are then attached.
There are many advantages to having dental implants:
Unlike with dentures, false teeth both act and feel like your own teeth. This means that they are stronger, no adhesives are required to keep them in place and they do not need taking out at night. With a full set of implants, your mouth will retain its natural shape, without the sagging that can occur without the teeth to support it.
The way that dental implants work mean that they are comfortable, with none of the possible problems dentures can have. This includes problems with how they fit, which can cause them to slip out of place. When this happens, speech can become affected, slurring for example, which is eliminated with the use of implants.
Eating is also much easier with dental implants. As they are just like your natural teeth, there is no need to avoid certain food as you might with dentures, meaning that you can continue to eat all of your favourite foods.
Implants help you to maintain your oral health as normal. As each one is inserted individually, the other teeth are not affected in any way. With a bridge, for example, work needs to be done on the neighbouring teeth in order to support it. As there is no gap where a tooth has been lost, the surrounding teeth won’t shift to compensate for it, and the jaw bone will retain its full strength.
Implants are topped with crowns that are made to look like your natural teeth, both size and colour, and can be cared for in the same way and using the same products, so your routine does not have to chance to accommodate them. Designed to be used long-term, they can last anywhere from a few years to a lifetime, whereas a bridge may need replacing every five years.
Additionally, although regular check-ups with your dentist will still be required, it is not possible to get a cavity in a crown, meaning no more fillings.
Having dental implants can have a positive impact on your emotional health, as well as the many physical benefits. The comfort, appearance and quality of the implants removes a large amount of the stress that comes with having traditional dentures, therefore improving your self-confidence.
Losing even one tooth can be a very scary experience and it is important to consider all of your options carefully. Dental implants have many advantages over other ways of replacing lost teeth, ones that are practical, health-conscious and cosmetic. Once they have been inserted, you will have your usual smile back, and it will last a lifetime.
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