Why It Is Important To Replace Missing Teeth?
Missing teeth can have a profound effect on your appearance and the strength of your jaw.
If a tooth is missing, the teeth surrounding the gap may become loose and begin to shift out of place, potentially resulting in misalignment issues and other oral health concerns. Your teeth support bone growth and work to preserve the bones in your jaw through the stimulation of chewing and biting. When a tooth is missing, the bone in that area no longer benefits from this stimulation, and as a result, you may develop oral health issues.
Dental implants are small titanium screws that are placed into the jaw bone and function like a natural tooth root. Once healed, the implant bonds with the natural bone, strengthening the area and serving as an anchor for a tooth replacement.
Implants can help to prevent the teeth surrounding a gap left by a missing tooth from becoming loose and shifting into the vacant space. They can also be an effective way to resolve bite issues or jaw joint pain, while helping to restore facial tissues and appearance.
The Dental Implant Procedure
The dental implant procedure is a multi-faceted process involving the placement of a dental implant (titanium screw) and an artificial tooth. If your jaw is weak or thin, a bone graft will be necessary before the dental implant process begins.
During step one of the dental implant process, your dentist will surgically place the implant into your jaw bone below the gum tissue. As the tissue heals, it will gradually bond with the bone and attach to your gums.
Following a healing period of approximately three to six months after your implant has been placed, you will return to our office to complete the procedure.
At this final appointment, your dentist will attach a tooth replacement, such as a dental crown, bridge or denture, to the implant in order to create the look and function of a natural tooth.
Dental Implant FAQs
Are you considering dental implants to replace your missing teeth but still have questions?
Read through the answers below to our most frequently asked questions about dental implants at Westside Dental Centre.
How long does a dental implant last?
If you take the time to care for your dental implants, they can last a lifetime. Caring for your dental implants is pretty much the same as your regular oral hygiene routine: a thorough and consistent brushing and flossing routine at home, combined with regular hygiene cleanings and exams at your dental office.
The amount of time your dental implant is going to last largely depends on some key factors such as nutrition, genetics, or the development of any dental diseases.
How do I care for my dental implants?
You will take care of your dental implants the same way you take care of your natural teeth.
Making an effort to see your dentist twice a year for hygiene appointments and maintaining a proper brushing and flossing routine at home will go a long way toward the longevity of your dental implant. By maintaining a good oral hygiene schedule, you can help to prevent decay or diseases from developing in the surrounding teeth and gums, which can negatively affect your dental implants.
Does getting a dental implant hurt?
As this is a surgical procedure, you will be given anesthesia to ensure that you are relaxed and not feeling any pain.
Once the procedure is complete, patients don't often report feeling much discomfort. Oftentimes, the post-surgical pain can be managed with an over-the-counter pain medication for a few days.
It will be important to eat a diet of soft foods for the first couple of weeks after the implant procedure to avoid pain or irritation.
How long does the dental implant process take?
From start to finish, the process of getting a dental implant can take up to nine months or longer to complete. This time frame will largely depend on your individual treatment plan as well as the condition of your oral health.
Your dentist can provide you with a more specific timeline based on your unique case.
Will my insurance cover dental implants?
Everyone's insurance plan is different so it can be difficult to say exactly what will be covered. Some insurance companies will fully cover the cost of dental implants, while others will only pay for a portion of the cost, and others won't pay for any of it.
Contact your insurance provider to find out if your policy covers any of the costs related to dental implants.