Whether you are missing a single tooth or several or even all of your teeth, dental implants can restore your smile with a permanent solution. Implants are the most exciting breakthrough in the field of dentistry in decades because they have finally given us a tooth replacement option that offers the same strength, stability and aesthetics of natural teeth. In addition, implants don’t require any special cleaning, just daily brushing and flossing like your own teeth.
Another major benefit of implants is that they prevent the bone loss that comes from having missing teeth. With a natural tooth, the root extends into the jawbone. The pressure that comes from using your teeth, particularly for chewing, is directed through the tooth into the root where it stimulates the bone and keeps it healthy and dense.
When a tooth is missing, so too is the bone stimulation. Over time this leads to deterioration. The weakened bone can decrease the stability of the remaining teeth and possibly lead to additional tooth loss. Because dental implants are anchored directly into the jawbone, they keep the jawbone stimulated just like real teeth. Implants are the only tooth replacement option with this benefit.
There are four common varieties of dental implants. This means you have every option available to you regardless of your tooth replacement needs. Let’s take a closer look at these implant solutions.
Single dental implant
As the name explains, a single dental implant is used to replace one missing tooth. The installation process begins with drilling a small hole in the jawbone where the implant will go. Inside this hole, a surgical-grade titanium post is inserted. Once it has fused with the bone, an abutment is placed on top of the post. The abutment is the actual structure to which the porcelain crown is attached. Dental porcelain is as strong as your natural teeth and indistinguishable in appearance. When your implant procedure is complete, no one will ever know that you previously had a missing tooth.
When a person has more than one missing tooth, other methods of tooth replacement may not be able to permanently correct the problem. The old crown and bridge method of replacement needs the support of other natural teeth, which may not be possible due to the position of the missing teeth. However, with implant bridges, one can easily replace multiple missing teeth anywhere in the mouth. This allows the implant dentist to restore the patient’s smile and function where they might have been unable to otherwise.
All-on-4 is the name of a revolutionary treatment that is used to replace an entire arch of teeth, either upper or lower, with a natural looking denture that is securely anchored on four dental implants. The loss of teeth and resultant jawbone deterioration accounts for the hollow look that is common for people with missing teeth. The “caved in” appearance and wrinkling of the lips is virtually eliminated with an All-on-4 dental implant. You will instantly look younger and healthier.
Denture stabilization with mini-implants
Denture wearers know that their appliances are often irritating and loose fitting. If you are one of the countless numbers of people who are weary of dealing with the shortcomings of standard dentures, denture stabilization is an excellent alternative. Implants that are smaller than those used in other implant procedures create a secure base to which the denture is simply snapped in place. The anchored denture is much more stable and functional.