There are several options to consider when replacing missing teeth. Dentures and dental implants are the two most common solutions. The two differ in longevity, comfort, confidence while wearing, and effect on your pocket book.
Many people with missing teeth wear conventional upper and lower dentures or partial dentures and many are unhappy with them. Lower dentures never fit or feel like natural teeth. They become loose fitting due to shrinking gum tissue, which then causes irritation to the mouth, sores and pain. Lower dentures also restrict your ability to eat or talk as you had with your natural teeth. The only relief is in using messy dental adhesive to improve the fit.
Upper dentures are a bit different. They are easier to wear because the suction in upper palate (roof of the mouth) helps keep the denture in place. But having the palate covered can also reduce the taste of foods that you are eating. Sores and pain in chewing and talking are quite frequent as the gum tissue shrinks, and many people suffer from having to use dental adhesive with upper dentures as well.
Removable partial dentures might be used when only several teeth are missing. A partial denture anchors to the teeth on either side of the empty area using a metal clasp. This can be very damaging to these teeth. Removable partial dentures can also be hard on the gum tissue when chewing and talking.
The advantage of upper and lower dentures is that they can be constructed quickly and they initially cost less than implants. They may last a lifetime, but over the years with aging, new sets need to be made to fit the changing gum tissue and chewing surfaces of the teeth in the dentures.
Dental Implants – A Better Solution
With the introduction of dental implants, the need to suffer with uncomfortable restorations has been eliminated. As our life span has been increasing, the need for some type of highly functional dental replacement system has become increasingly important. Dental implants are permanent dental replacements that are both natural looking and very functional. Implants look much better and feel better, and offer the same force for biting as natural teeth. If you are a non-smoker with good oral hygiene habits, dental implants should last for a lifetime.
Dental implants are a major investment and the procedure can be time consuming. As with any complex surgery, there is always the risk of complication even after a thorough examination and consultation prior to care. But dental implants are a dependable and life long solution to missing teeth. Compared with dentures, which can be loose and unstable, implants provide a permanent solution that is both functional and natural in appearance, giving you the confidence to smile and show your pearly whites.
Both dentures and dental implants have progressed rapidly over the years. Many people are finding that dental implants are the most desirable solution for missing teeth. Implants allow for a new found confidence while smiling, far exceeding the comfort and confidence found with dentures.
Why Replace Missing Teeth?
The Effects of Missing Teeth
The effects of missing teeth can be detrimental to your long term oral and medical health. Missing teeth are also recognized associated with old age and can make you look older than you are.
Replacing missing teeth can dramatically improve your smile and the shape of your face. This greatly enhances both your dental health and self-esteem.
An Off-bite Relationship
Having gaps where teeth are missing affects the way the jaw closes. The remaining teeth begin to tilt and drift into the gaps. In addition, food can become trapped in these spaces, increasing the risk of decay and gum disease. The tilting and drifting can also cause problems for the opposing teeth. An opposing tooth will begin to hyper erupt and begin to drift into the open space of the missing tooth, causing the opposing jaw-line to have bite relationship problems; thus beginning TMJ problems (problems with the jaw joint).
As soon as a tooth is lost, either from gum disease or an extraction, the supporting bone in the jaw begins to dissolve. This process is called resorption. The longer a tooth is missing, the greater the bone loss.
Over time, resorption of the jawbone has a considerable effect on quality of life and on the possibility of replacing the missing teeth. As teeth are lost it becomes more difficult to eat and chew food. Studies have shown that 29 percent of denture wearers eat only soft or mashed foods and 50 percent avoid many foods altogether. And over time, more and more of the jaw bone disintegrates until it becomes very difficult to place any dental restoration.
Benefits of Replacing a Tooth Immediately
A tooth should be replaced as soon as it is lost. This will retain your oral health by preventing bone loss, reducing movement of surrounding teeth and avoiding excess decay.
Teeth provide more functions than just the ability to chew. They are necessary for the health of the gum and jaw tissues as well, and a prolonged absence of a tooth will severely limit the possibilities for restorations. Missing teeth may also affect your confidence and well-being.
Crowns, bridges, and dentures are not the only options when replacing missing teeth. Dental implants offer the look and feel of natural teeth. Implants offer stability because they fuse to your bone. Integration of the implants into your jaw bone also helps the replacement teeth feel more natural and many people find this secure fit very comfortable.
Dental implants are an ideal option for people in good general oral health who have lost one or more teeth due to periodontal disease or an injury. Candidates for dental implants need to have healthy gums and adequate bone to support the implant. A thorough evaluation by your dentist will help determine whether dental implants are right for you.
Dental implants are actually more tooth-saving than traditional bridgework, since implants do not rely on neighboring teeth for support. In a bridge, the teeth surrounding the site of the missing teeth must be shaved down and fitted with crowns.
Common Reasons for Implants
A common reason people consider implants is due to poor fit of their dentures, which causes difficulty in chewing and a fear of losing the dentures while talking or eating. The majority of patients treated with dental implants experience a significant improvement in their ability to chew food and they report that the implants are a far more comfortable alternative.
A good dental implant candidate should have the following:
- Over-all good health
- Healthy gums
- Enough bone to anchor the implants in the jaw – A dentist can evaluate the bone structure and recommend treatment options.
- Be committed to taking very good care of the implanted teeth and surrounding gums — Daily brushing and flossing are essential.
- Regular dental check-ups.
Common Reasons Implants May Not Work
Most adults can be candidates for dental implants. However, smokers and those with uncontrolled chronic diseases or systemic problems may not be good candidates for this procedure. Smoking impedes healing in the mouth and can reduce the likelihood that implants will be successful. People with poorly controlled diabetes may not be good candidates for implants as well, due to healing problems of the gum tissue that can arise.
The First Step
Making the initial dental appointment is the first step in evaluating if dental implants are right for you. Usually a prosthodontist, periodontist or an oral surgeon are the dentists to look for. There are a few general dentists with specialized training qualified to place implants. Check with each doctor to make sure of their specialization or their certification with implantology.
On the first appointment a full mouth exam will be completed with a complete medical and dental history. You’ll receive X-rays and possibly a CT scan, which will give the dentist a good idea of your bone density and the shape of your jaw. Finally, you’ll discuss the options available to you and be educated by the dental staff about the whole implant procedure. They’ll discuss if you’d be a good candidate for a dental implant. You must also commit to a meticulous oral hygiene regime with regular dental visits.
Finding out if you’re a good candidate for dental implants begins with a simple step. With motivation, care and willingness, dental implants can give the confidence and security to last a lifetime.
Implants are the latest dental technology for replacing the roots of lost teeth. They are used to support crowns, bridges, and dentures. Implants offer stability, comfort and a sense of freedom for those who have missing teeth and want to regain their smile back.
Replacing a Single Tooth with a Dental Implant
If you have lost a tooth due to an accident or from periodontal disease, that one tooth can be replaced using a dental implant.
A dental implant is an excellent way of replacing a single tooth without the disadvantages of a fixed bridge or removable dentures. It is the ideal treatment for a missing tooth because it does not affect your adjacent teeth. That means no grinding or crowning of your natural teeth for bridges, and no clasps for removable partial dentures.
Your teeth stimulate the surrounding bone with each bite. This preserves the integrity of the bone. When a tooth is lost, the bone is not stimulated and begins to shrink away. A dental implant keeps this bone intact and can prevent both bone loss and gum tissue shrinkage. In addition, because a dental implant replaces the root structure, the jawbone is better preserved. A dental implant is also much easier to clean as compared to a bridge. And unlike a bridge, an implant can not be affected by cavities.
A dental implant looks and functions like a natural tooth, while having several advantages over other types of tooth replacement. If you are missing a single tooth, a dental implant is the most natural looking way to replace it.
Replacing Multiple Teeth with Dental Implants
As we age, a greater effort is required in the maintenance of our appearance. While we may force ourselves to a strict diet and exercise, many times our teeth are forgotten. Teeth are prone to deterioration after many years of use. They get worn down, chipped/cracked, and eventually they can be lost due to physical injury or prolonged tooth decay and deterioration. Having many missing teeth is detrimental to the health and replacing these teeth is very important.
Just as with one missing tooth, several missing teeth can be aided with dental implants. Implant supported bridges are permanently fixed in the mouth, unlike removable appliances. Dental implants look and function like natural teeth without needing the support of neighboring teeth. Because dental implants replace the root of the natural tooth, they preserve the jawbone and prevent bone deterioration. This preservation of jawbone helps to keep both the bone and gum tissue from collapsing, which may lead to an unattractive smile. In addition, with a traditional bridge, cement can wash out from underneath the bridge exposing the tooth, allowing cavities to form. Dental implants do not get cavities, but brushing and flossing are extremely important to maintain for healthy gums and help in keeping plaque away from the bone and gum tissue.
Dentures will fit more securely and comfortably with an overdenture implant. This will minimize any discomfort and movement (slipping) that is common with normal dentures. Many older adults are turning towards dental implant supported dentures for their greater comfort and confidence with dentures. Many people are often able to eat the foods they couldnâ€™t with their old dentures.
Mulitple teeth implants are a great way to add confidence to your smile with a truly snug fitting denture or getting rid of that ill-fitting partial denture.
If you are missing a single tooth or mulitple teeth, dental implants are the way to go. They are the most natural looking way to replace missing teeth. Dental implants help maintain the integrity of the jawbone and prevent deterioration of the bone that can take place with missing teeth. It’s important to replace missing teeth as soon as possible for the full function of chewing and for a healthy, happy smile.
Dental implant placement is not a dental specialty by itself. Many times it takes several dentists, working in different specialties, to provide the full treatment. From an oral surgeon to a prosthodontist to a periodontist, and even a general dentist, all of these specialists may aid in the placement or restoration of the dental implant. It also varies if you need a single replacement or a more extensive restoration.
One specialist may perform the surgery to actually place the dental implant, while another places the crown on top of the implant to complete the restoration (usually called "restorative implants”).
Typically, the implant surgery is performed by an oral surgeon or a periodontist, and the restorative crown is placed by a general dentist or prosthodontist. It’s important that all the specialists work together as a team for your dental implant treatment.
Why an Oral Maxillofacial Surgeon?
Oral maxillofacial surgeons are dentists specializing in surgery of the mouth, face and jaws. Oral surgeons receive an extra four to seven years of hospital-based surgical and medical training, after dental school. They prepare themselves to do a wide range of procedures including all types of surgery of the hard tissue (bones) and soft tissues of the face, mouth and neck.
Why a Periodontist?
A periodontist is a dental specialist with training in the diagnosing and treatment of the gum tissue and surrounding jawbone tissue. This specialist has an additional two years of extensive training after dental school. A periodontist devotes their time, energy, and skill to helping patients care for their gum tissue.
Why a Prosthodontist?
The prosthodontist examines and diagnoses disabilities caused by loss of teeth and supporting structures. They are specially trained to provide expertise in restorative treatment and they deliver smiles with high level function, maximum comfort and pristine esthetics. They are also known as "cosmetic dentists" and often focus on the esthetic aspect of a smile to improve the appearance of your teeth with bleaching, bonding, veneers, reshaping, orthodontics, and implants.
Why a General Dentist?
Your general dentist knows your dental history and specific needs. Most often, the general dentist will determine if you are a candidate for dental implants during your visits to their office. They may then either proceed with surgery at their office, or they may refer you to a specialist and then later provide the crown restoration that accompanies your implant.
Things to Look For
In deciding whether to use your general dentist for all the treatment or using the ‘team’ of dental practitioners, the most important consideration is the qualification of each doctor involved and their ability to work well in a team to provide you with the best care possible.
The following are some useful questions to ask the dentist who will be placing your dental implants.
Key Questions to Ask
How much training have you had in this procedure?
How many implant patients have you treated successfully?
How long have you been working with dental implants?
Where did you receive your training for dental implant placement and restorative care?
Do you offer a book of testimonials or references from previous patients?
Once you have your answers you’ll be able to make an educated decision on which route would be best for your implant treatment. Don’t be afraid to ask any questions that come to mind: it’s your mouth and you have to live with it for the rest of your life. Get the most out of it, enjoy your smile and be proud of your dental treatment.
Dental implant placement is not a dental specialty. Many times it takes several dental practitioners working together to provide the full treatment.
It’s important to look for a qualified dentist/specialist to perform the procedure. Once you are comfortable with your choice, you are on your way to a brighter, healthier, more confident smile.
During any surgical procedure, complications may arise that affect the probability of success. Less well recognized is the fact that lifestyle and diet following surgery may have an equally large impact.
Recently, researchers at the University of Murcia in Spain discovered further evidence that smoking decreases the likelihood of dental implant surgical success. In a study of 66 patients over the course of 5 years, they found that 15.8% of dental implants failed in smokers whereas only 1.4% failed in non-smokers.
Smoking decreases blood flow to the tissues surrounding the dental implant posts, which inhibits bonding between the post and the tissue. When the post does not bond, the implant is not supported, has “failed,” and must either be replaced or removed altogether. Tobacco users are also at greater risk for post-surgical infection, which may cause them to heal more slowly than their smoke-free counterparts.
If you hope to retain your dental implants for life, a healthy smoke-free lifestyle is key. Dental Implants India will cater to all your needs.