When you lose a tooth it can adversely affect your overall health
There are lots of reasons you should replace a missing tooth. It looks bad, it’s bad for your remaining teeth, your gums and your jaw. Dr Larry Saylor is one of the most trusted names in dental implants and believes all of his patients are entitled to a smile they can be proud of.
Did you know that when you lose a tooth jawbone gradually starts to shrink?
Did you know that after a time the only way to treat jawbone shrinkage is surgery?
Did you know that replacing a missing tooth with dental implants can prevent this?
Why dental implants
Other forms of tooth replacement treatments only replace the top half (crown). And while this does prevent surrounding teeth from becoming crooked, it does not necessarily provide adequate stimulation for your jawbone.
You want to stimulate your jawbone when you chew. It’s what keeps your jawbone healthy. Also, jawbone shrinkage has been proven to cause further tooth loss as well as a sunken aged appearance.
A lost tooth and your jawbone
When you lose a tooth the jawbone responsible for holding your tooth in place starts to shrink. By having an implant surgically inserted into the site of the missing tooth root you can prevent shrinkage from happening.
A dental implant is made from biocompatible metal to heavily reduce the risk of your body rejecting the foreign material. When the implant is placed it will take around 3 months for your jawbone to fuse with the implant. This process is known as osseointegration.
Once your jawbone has fused to the implant it will provide a strong and sturdy tooth root replacement. The next step in the treatment is to attach a dental crown to the implant to replace the top half of your tooth.
Dental implant treatment
From start to finish this treatment can take 3 to 6 months. At the end of the treatment you’ll have a tooth replacement that will look and feel like a natural tooth.
Like your natural teeth dental implants will require proper oral hygiene care and check-ups. Because dental implants are also susceptible to gum disease. That is, if you suffer from gum disease—where pockets form between tooth and gum leading to teeth falling out—you could lose your dental implant.
Why can treatment take six months?
This is an estimation. For some patients the treatment will only take 2-3 months. The biggest factor is the length of time it takes for your jawbone to fuse with the implant. Factors that contribute to the healing time include:
- Your overall health
- Your oral health
- Whether the implants in your upper or lower jaw
- If you smoke
If the implant is placed in the upper jaw it will take slightly longer to heal than an implant placed in the lower jaw. As for smoking, it slows down your body’s natural ability to heal.
If you would like to know more about dental implants, book an appointment.