Most people will lose at least one permanent tooth by the time they reach their elder years. Some might consider it a cosmetic issue, but missing teeth can lead to a host of health issues. Patients who need to have a tooth removed soon, or have recently lost a tooth, have several tooth replacement options. Dental implants are one of the safest and most effective restorative dentistry solutions.
Your Mouth After Losing a Tooth
Teeth serve a number of important functions. Besides helping you chew and speak properly, tooth roots stimulate healthy bone in the jaw. When those roots are no longer in place, the bone is no longer actively stimulated and weakens. If you have one or more teeth missing you are a higher risk for gum disease, tooth decay, malocclusion, and developing facial deformities. Unfixed devices like removable dentures can be helpful, but sometimes they aren’t enough.
What are Dental Implants?
Implants are the modern and most popular restorative treatment for missing teeth. It starts with the placement of titanium posts that get surgically inserted into the jaw bone. Dental implants serve as replacement tooth roots for lost teeth. At the top of the post is an abutment piece that attaches to the prosthetic tooth (crown). A custom-made crown is designed to match the shape and color of the surrounding teeth.
Single-Tooth Dental Implants
Since the comprehensive screening process is so thorough, single-tooth implants are a very successful method. First, your medical history is reviewed, and your gums carefully inspected to be sure you are not in the process of at risk for developing any serious oral health threats.
The Procedure and Results
It takes about an hour to place a single-tooth implant if no other procedures are scheduled at the same time. During the process, the post is surgically inserted and anchored into the jaw bone. After the treatment area has healed, the bone will have formed around the implant. Then, the dental crown is attached to the exposed end and restoration is complete.
With proper aftercare, the post should serve you well for the remainder of your life. Dental crowns last for 15 or more years. Single-tooth dental implants allow patients the freedom to enjoy their favorite foods and smile with confidence.