Dental implants are considered the standard treatment for gaps between the teeth. Not only can gaps negatively affect the appearance, but they also age the face and allow the teeth to shift in the jaw, becoming tilted or crooked. Implants fill the space with an attractive, natural-looking tooth and help maintain the integrity of the jawbone. Most healthy people are good candidates for dental implants, but there are certain things to consider before having the procedure.
A good candidate will have good oral health with no gum disease, will be strong and healthy enough to have surgery, will have enough jawbone to support the implant root and will not smoke or use other tobacco products. Smoking, including e-cigarettes, and tobacco use increases the risk of gum disease, as well as implant failure. It has a detrimental effect on bone healing so that the jaw creates a fibrous tissue around the implant rather than the natural bone growth.
Even if you have one or more of the above conditions, there are things that can be done to improve your oral and overall health so that you can have the procedure. For example, if your jawbone is not strong enough to support implants, you can have a bone graft either at the time of the implant procedure or earlier so it has time to heal.
There are two types of dental implants. The most common is endosteal or in the bone. The bone grows around it firmly, anchoring it in the jaw. A crown or artificial tooth is attached to the top of the screw. A subperiosteal or beneath-the-gum implant is a frame placed on top of the jawbone with small posts that protrude through the gums. The crown is attached to the posts.
Many people wonder if they are too old to get implants. Age is not usually a factor when we assess you for one or multiple implants. If you are in good general health, you may be a good candidate for dental implants.
Dental implants look, feel and function like natural teeth. Since there are different options for implants, our expert at Distinctive Laser Dentistry may recommend a treatment that solves more than one dental problem. Dental implants are a long-lasting solution for missing teeth and will last for years, sometimes decades. All you need to do is brush and floss them as you do your natural teeth and come to our office in Saint Louis Park for regular cleanings and check-ups. Contact us today to schedule a consultation to learn more about dental implants!