Your dentist may recommend dental implants to replace missing teeth. Not only do dental implants prevent further tooth loss, but they also provide more stability than other tooth replacement options.
Continue reading to get the facts on the dental implant procedure. For more information, call our office to set up a consultation with one of our dental implant dentists.
What are dental implants?
A dental implant is a prosthetic tooth root (typically made of titanium) used to anchor a crown. If you have missing teeth, your dentist may recommend dental implants to restore the appearance and function of your smile.
What are the health benefits of dental implants?
Dental implants are embedded deep in your jaw to give you more stability than other tooth replacement options. Unlike dentures, you won’t have to worry about your dental implants slipping while you eat, talk, or smile. Instead, your tooth implant will look and feel natural.
Dental implants stimulate jawbone tissue so it doesn’t deteriorate over time. Otherwise, you may experience further tooth loss and even facial collapse. Facial collapse not only changes the shape of your face, but makes it difficult to continue wearing dentures.
Your body is able to sense tooth loss and absorbs the minerals in your jawbone so it can be used elsewhere. To your body, there’s no reason to have a jawbone if there are no teeth to support. Dental implants fix this problem by giving your jawbone tissue the stimulation it needs to be healthy.
What can I expect during the dental implant process?
The dental implant process takes several months. Once your dentist has determined you are a candidate for dental implant surgery, they’ll schedule the procedure. During your first appointment with us, we’ll give you anesthesia before inserting the implant into your jawbone.
Over the next several months, the tooth implant will fuse to your jaw in a process called osseointegration. Our dentists will monitor your progress to make sure you’re healing properly. Once the implantation is complete, you’ll return to our office to have the dental crown placed over the implant. A dental implant crown gives you the look and function of a natural tooth.
Am I a candidate for dental implants?
To be a candidate for the dental implant procedure, you must have healthy gum and jawbone tissue. However, if you don’t have sufficient jawbone tissue for the procedure, your dental implant dentist may recommend a bone graft.
How long do dental implants last?
After the dental implant procedure, you’ll need to continue your oral hygiene routine by brushing your teeth twice a day. We also recommend flossing once daily to remove dental plaque hiding in between teeth and along the gum line.
If we find plaque and tartar buildup during your next appointment, we may recommend you add a fluoride mouthwash to your daily routine. A tooth implant can last decades when given proper care.
Our dentists will be able to help you explore your tooth replacement options, including dental implant surgery. To schedule your appointment with one of our Grand Rapids dentists, call Complete Health Dentistry at (616) 458-7267.