In addition to destroying a beautiful smile, there are several negative after-effects of losing a tooth:
As significant as these problems may be, one of the more serious after-effects of missing teeth is the loss of bone in the jaw. When teeth are removed, the body assumes there is no need for the bone that supported the teeth. After all, that is the primary job of your jawbone. Over time the bone slowly, yet progressively diminishes. In fact the upper and lower jawbone get smaller or shrink – 40% the first three months and 10% every decade thereafter. This can lead to very serious consequences.
But, there is a way to avoid these problems – Dental Implants
If you are missing one or more teeth, and wish to eat your favorite foods, increase your chewing ability, and improve your appearance, speech, and self-esteem, then you are a candidate for dental implants. We use the latest implant technology so you can smile again with confidence. Call our office today to schedule your appointment.
Basically, an implant is an artificial tooth that is made to fit into the jaw bone, just like your natural teeth.
Until recently, almost all implants were made of titanium. These implants were working well enough. However, titanium is a metal and putting any metal in the body is questionable. Current research has shown that titanium can cause chronic inflammatory reactions.
Fortunately, a new ceramic-based implant material is now available that has been in use in Europe for over a decade – zirconia. This is a space-age material that will actually fuse with living bone, creating a strong structural support for the artificial tooth.
Not to be confused with zirconium (which is also a metal), zirconia is a crystal that is closely related to cubic zirconia – a man-made diamond.
In addition to the use of a more biocompatible material, zirconia implants have another important distinction. Titanium implants came in two separate parts – the root and the crown. This required two dental procedures, separated by up to 6 months or more.
Also, after extraction, a titanium implant requires 3 to 6 months for the gum to heal. So, the whole process could take up to a year.
On the other hand a zirconia implant can be one or two pieces, whereas a titanium implant can only be a 2 piece. This provides the potential to reduce the number of appointments.
If the implant site does not have enough bone volume to support the appropriate sized implant, you will need a bone graft. Bone loss can be the result from periodontal disease, injuries, cysts, infections or an extracted tooth. Normally, it can be determined if you will need a bone graft from your x-ray prior to surgery, but in some cases it is not discovered until opening the implant site.
Bone grafts are very safe and effective in the dental implant restoration. Once it is placed, it will help replace missing bone, stimulate bone formation and increase bone volume.
Dental implant patients experience the benefits of new and permanent teeth, as well as a renewed confidence and improved quality of life. Contact us for more information about Dental Implants.