Is your smile being affected by tooth loss? Look no further than dental implants! Capable of restoring both the form and function of your teeth, these permanent fixtures are placed within the jawbone by a certified surgical dentist. If you’re considering improving your oral health with this innovative solution, then now is an ideal time to explore it further.
What are dental implants?
A dental implant is a specially designed screw-like structure that replaces a missing tooth when inserted into the jawbone by an experienced surgeon. This innovative device acts as an anchor for an artificial tooth, also known as a crown, which has been custom-made to fit the patient’s mouth and match their existing teeth in both colour and function. Crowns provide patients with natural-looking replacements that replicate the feel of real teeth.
What are the benefits of dental implants?
Dental Implants behave like natural teeth
An implant offers numerous benefits, most notably a complete restoration of chewing power. Patients will not be able to tell the difference between their natural teeth and an implanted one – they can brush, floss, and eat with it as usual.
Dental Implants are a long-term solution
Dental bridges may only stand for around a decade, whereas dental implants can provide lifelong stability. Crafted from titanium and integrated with the jawbone, these bio-compatible fixtures are non-toxic and accepted by the body, ultimately forming an incredibly strong replacement tooth.
Dental Implants prevent bone loss
Losing a tooth causes your jawbone to deteriorate, as there is no longer any stimulation in that area. If an implant is not placed within the first year of losing a tooth, up to 25% of bone volume can be lost from this space and continues reducing over time. It’s clear: if you don’t replace teeth with implants or roots quickly enough, your jaw will suffer irreversible damage. Read more about it here.
Dentures can even cause further bone loss due to their tendency to become loose and rub against the bony ridge, wearing it down. Thankfully, dental implants are here as a solution: they not only replace both the root and tooth of a missing one but also ensure that chewing is restored to its natural state while stimulating natural bone growth!
Dental Implants do not damage neighbouring teeth
Without a tooth’s presence, the adjacent teeth may become crooked and move towards the gap. This can lead to an incorrect bite, difficulty chewing and poor aesthetics. Moreover, it poses challenges later on when replacing that missing tooth; additionally, these issues with alignment often result in TMJ pain and headaches. Taking care of your oral health is paramount for ensuring harmony in your mouth!
Dental Implants prevent gum disease
When a tooth is missing, the gap left behind can easily become a magnet for bacteria and food particles – resulting in an increased risk of developing gum disease.
Dental Implants can prevent facial sagging and premature ageing
Unattractive facial sagging is a common outcome of bone loss due to missing teeth. This causes the lower third of one’s face to sink, diminishing the space between the nose and chin. Further effects include surplus wrinkles about the mouth area, thinner lips, and an exaggeratedly sharp chin– leading them to look much older than they are!
Types of dental implants
Endosteal implants are the most popular choice for dental implant surgery, as a surgeon can embed them directly into the jawbone, and each one can carry more than one artificial tooth. On the other hand, if you have limited height to your jawbones, then subperiosteal is an ideal option; both provide a stable fitting that guarantees safety
Dental implant surgery is safe when conducted by a trained and skilled dentist or surgeon.
Potential complications of implant surgery
Unfortunately, when it comes to this procedure, a few potential complications may arise from nerve damage which might cause altered sensations in the area of operation, an incision opening up after surgery or even implant movement and exposure.
If any of these occur, then a further assessment or additional procedures, such as reshaping bone structure around the implant, may be needed for proper healthcare and/ or removal /replacement of the appliance.
What are some signs and symptoms of an unsuccessful dental implant?
Unsuccessful implant placement can be indicated by a variety of signs and symptoms, including the implant being excessively mobile; pus or other secretions coming from the site; pain when tapping on it; and/or rapid bone loss. If any of these indicators are present, visit your dentist for an evaluation as soon as possible.
Dental implant procedure
Everyone’s experience with the surgical procedure will differ due to several factors, such as the number of teeth that need replacing, where in the jaw they’re situated, how much and what kind of bone is at the location for implantation, and overall oral/systemic health. Depending on these individual components, one may also have to go through extra procedures, which could consist of:
Inserting an implant into the upper jawbone can be a challenging task due to its proximity to the sinuses. To ensure success, surgeons may need to complete a sinus augmentation process which will raise the floor of the sinuses and facilitate more bone growth for successful implantation.
If a person lacks sufficient jaw bone for implants, surgeons may suggest bone grafting as an effective solution. This process entails lifting the gums to uncover any deformed areas of the bone and reconstructing it by utilising either synthetic or natural materials. Thanks to this method, people with abnormal jaw bones can now experience better quality in their jaws before undergoing implant surgery. Bone grafts have enabled countless individuals with strong jaws and improved smile
What kind of maintenance do dental implants require?
It is essential to follow a soft food diet for the first 7 days following implant surgery to ensure your implants are not damaged during their healing period. For up to 12 weeks after, extra caution should be taken with foods that could harm the new implants.
Flossing & brushing
Maintaining your dental implants is easy – simply brush twice a day and floss regularly! Remember to take special care near implant edges as food residue can collect more quickly there. By cleaning correctly, you’ll significantly reduce plaque buildup in these areas.
Not only does the upkeep of your pearly whites affect the lastingness of implants, but also how you live. Smoking is a major contributing factor to dental implant issues and overall oral health; that’s why dentists consider it an essential factor in predicting the success of dental implants when assessing your eligibility for getting them during an initial consultation.
Maintaining a healthy mouth
Dismiss the misconception that your oral cavity is a separate entity from the rest of your body — it’s not true! Your overall health and wellness have an immense impact on your dental implants. Especially since our bodies work as one holistic system, you must take proper care of yourself if you want to keep all parts – including those pearly whites – in optimal condition. To truly maximise the longevity of any dental implant, make sure to look after both physical and mental well-being with maintenance habits that are essential for long-term success.
To uphold the health of your dental implants, be sure to integrate interdental brushes into your daily maintenance routine. These miniature brushes can effectively remove bits of food and plaque that often get stuck around your implant’s borders- a key component in eliminating gum disease risks!
Utilise antimicrobial mouthwash to eliminate and prevent a buildup of oral bacteria near your dental implants.
Regular dental visits
Ensure that you adhere to regular dental check-ups and hygienist appointments. Doing so will allow your dentist to monitor the success of your implants while also granting those replacement teeth a well-deserved deep clean.
Listen to your dentist
Comply with the instructions your dentist provides for taking care of your dental implants. This includes whatever dietary restrictions and cleaning methods they impose so that your implants last as long as possible. If these steps are followed faithfully, then there’s no reason why you won’t enjoy many years of strong, healthy teeth!
If you have pre-existing conditions such as uncontrolled diabetes, vulnerability to gum disease, or are a heavy smoker, dental implants might not last for long and may lead to complications. Therefore, you must find the right dentist who can help with your implant’s longevity so that they last potentially for a lifetime. Moreover, practising good oral hygiene along with taking proper care of them will further ensure optimal success rates.
Cost of dental implants
When determining the cost of dental implant surgery, an array of variables must be taken into account, like how many implants are necessary, the type and location within your jaw bone, as well as any auxiliary procedures. To attain a precise estimate for this procedure, contact an experienced dentist during your initial consultation to get a definitive quote. While bridges may appear cheaper initially, they usually end up being more expensive in the long haul since replacements and repairs become commonplace over time. Contrarily, dental implants are a lasting solution if tended to properly by their owners – which could eventually save you a great amount of money.
Get affordable and quality dental implants at Oakleigh Smiles
Book an appointment or call us at (03) 9007 2258 today with our skilled and friendly dental team at Oakleigh Smiles and get yourself assessed for dental implants; take the first step towards your best smile!
Note: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.
Dental Implants Procedure