You’re probably familiar with the idea of dentures as a solution to missing teeth. But have you heard of dental implants?
Dental implants are a permanent, natural-looking solution to tooth loss and offer so many great advantages. Let’s take a look.
What are dental implants?
Dental implants are basically artificial tooth roots. The dental implant procedure involves three main pieces:
- The implant – Acts like the root of the tooth and is typically made of titanium or zirconium. The implant is placed below the gum line, where your natural bone heals around it.
- The abutment – A small connecting piece placed on top of the dental implant to hold your restoration in place.
- The restoration – Usually a crown, bridge, or supported denture. This is the part of your implant that looks like your natural tooth. It attaches to the abutment and is custom made for your smile.
Dental implants are usually recommended for anyone with a missing tooth or teeth, or those who need to have a tooth extracted.
Dental implants compared to traditional dentures
The truth is, traditional dentures can be a bit of a bother. They may have a lower cost upfront, but they require daily cleaning, plus the use of messy adhesives to keep them in place. Dentures impact speech and also limit the foods you can eat. But they may be the right solution for someone who needs a quick, inexpensive fix, or whose jaw or teeth are not able to support implants.
Our team is here to help find the best option for you. Learn more about choosing between dentures vs implants here. Or contact us to set up a free consultation and get a professional recommendation. We’ll help you understand what type of tooth restoration is best for you.
The dangers of missing teeth
It might not seem like it, but replacing a missing tooth or teeth isn’t just about how your smile looks — it ties into your health as well. A few common health problems as a result of missing teeth include:
- Bone loss — Over time your jawbone will start to shrink and become weaker, as it no longer has the support of tooth roots.
- Gum disease — Living with missing teeth makes you more susceptible to developing gum disease.
- Gum recession — The gums will start to recede where the tooth once was, creating a breeding ground for plaque and other bacteria that can further weaken the adjacent teeth.
- Decay — Missing teeth fuel decay and other problems in neighboring teeth, often leading to more tooth loss.
- Difficulty eating — Food will be more difficult to chew and can cause digestive issues.
- Additional tooth loss — Due to missing other teeth, the remaining teeth have to support additional biting force, which can lead to breaking other teeth over time.
If you’re living with missing teeth, talk to Dr. Dooley today. You deserve to not only have a full, confident smile but a healthy future.
The dental implant procedure
The basic dental implant procedure at Cedar Village Dentistry can be broken down into 3 steps:
Dr. Dooley will use an advanced Cone Beam Scanner to take clear, hyper realistic 3D models of your mouth. This technology allows for super precise, highly personalized placement of your implants.
Dr. Dooley will place the implant under your gum line. This part of the procedure can be done using sedation dentistry to increase your comfort.
After your implant has had some time to heal and integrate with your jawbone, you’ll come back into our office to have your crown or other restoration painlessly attached to the implant. Wa-la! You are all set with your new and natural looking teeth.
Following your dental implant procedure, you should be able to resume normal activities within 24 hours.
6 advantages of dental implants
1. Good for your gum tissue and jawbone
Dental implants are the only restorative treatment that helps preserve the bone in your jaw. This is because a dental implant mimics a tooth’s roots, providing structure and support to the jaw. When you’re missing a tooth (or teeth), that structure disappears, often decreasing bone density and eventually leading to a “sunken” look in your face.
2. Easy to care for
With dental implants, you don’t have to worry about messy adhesives or daily cleaning solutions. Simply brush and floss your implant like you already do your teeth, visit us for your routine cleanings and exams, and you’ll be all set!
3. Durable & long-lasting
Traditional dentures have an average lifespan of about 5-10 years. Dental implant, on the other hand? If cared for properly, they can last from 30 years up to a lifetime!
4. Natural look and feel
Dental implants are the most natural looking missing tooth treatment on the market. They are custom-designed to look like and fit with the rest of your teeth. Even better, dental implants feel natural, allowing you to eat and speak naturally and without embarrassment.
5. Good for your health
Your dental implants are made of titanium or zirconium — both biocompatible materials that encourage growth of healthy jawbone and tissue.
6. Restores the ability to eat and speak naturally
Dental implants feel just like regular teeth, and won’t slide or slip out of place like traditional dentures often do. They allow you to eat all of your favorite foods — even hard or crunchy foods — and speak just like you always would.
Feeling anxious about getting dental implants? Sedation dentistry may be right for you
Most of our patients report that the dental implant procedure is actually extremely easy and simple, with a fast recovery time. However, we know that dental implants can sound like a scary procedure, especially if you are like 15% of American adults who are already anxious or afraid to come into the dentist’s office.
We are happy to offer sedation dentistry options to all of our patients. Sedation dentistry might be right for you if you:
- Have moderate to severe dental anxiety
- Are concerned about being uncomfortable or sitting still during the procedure
- Have a strong gag reflex
Here in our Mason, OH office, we offer IV sedation, nitrous oxide, and oral sedation options. Give us a call at (513) 770-4370 to set up a consultation with Dr. Dooley, or with more questions.
We’re here to help
At Cedar Village Dentistry, our practice is dedicated to making you feel completely at ease with your dental treatment. When you visit our Mason, OH office, we know you’ll love our high-tech, minimally invasive treatments, compassionate care, and comfortable environment.