Denture implants are a more palatable option for those who have lost teeth and want to avoid the inconvenience often associated with traditional options. With this, an artificial tooth root is embedded directly into the jaw to hold the replacement tooth or bridge. To learn more about dental implant options, consider the following information.
There are two primary types of implantable dentures: endosteal and subperiosteal. With endosteal options, the most common type, the hardware is placed directly within the jawbone. This procedure is best for those who are missing more than one tooth and would otherwise need a bridge or traditional removable dentures. People who are not able to wear traditional dentures or who have minimal bone height may instead be able to get subperiosteal dentures, in which the artificial tooth root hardware is placed on top of the jawbone.
Who Is a Candidate?
Those with good oral and general health may be able to opt for dental implants if missing teeth rather than removing on removable dentures. You'll also need to be examined by a periodontist, a specialist who focuses on the jawbone and gums, to determine whether your gums are in good health, and you have adequate jawbone height to support implants. Dentures can be used to replace just one tooth, a bridge, or the entire mouth. For patients who have healthy enough gums to support dental implants, the success rate for this procedure is up to 98 percent. It's important to be committed to good hygiene and regular dental visits. They may not be the best choice for people who smoke, who have an uncontrolled chronic condition, like diabetes or hypertension, or who have had radiation treatment to the head or neck.
For many patients, denture implants are preferable because they are permanent rather than removable and can be made to match remaining teeth for an improved appearance. Most people find them more comfortable than removable options, which can often hinder speech and eating. These benefits typically result in improved self-esteem for patients who opt for implants instead of removable options. In addition, they are made to fuse with your own teeth, and can last a lifetime with proper care.
What to Expect During the Procedure
Dental implants are a multi-step procedure that takes several months to complete. First, your oral surgeon will embed the implant that replaces the root of your missing tooth. As your jawbone heals from this step, a process that can take between six and 12 weeks, the bone grows around it to hold it permanently in place. When healing is complete, a small post, called an abutment, is added to serve as the anchor for your new teeth. Your dentist will take a model of your bite to make a crown, which will be attached to the abutment to complete the procedure.
If you are interested in dental implants, your dentist will develop an individualized treatment plan to determine next steps.