Do you have a missing tooth? Are you aware of the options available to you? There was a time when the standard way to fix missing teeth was dentures and fixed bridges but these days, there is another wholesome option which is known as a dental implant.
Dental implants offer certain advantages over traditional methods for addressing missing teeth. These are much more functional and feel more natural compared to other alternatives. In today’s blog post, we will take a close look at the various pros and cons of dental implants.
What Are Dental Implants?
A dental implant is a small post in the shape of a screw that is usually made from titanium. This small post is implanted in the jaw bone to act as a root for the replacement tooth or crown. On top of this implant sits a connector that connects the implant to the replacement tooth or crown. In short, a dental implant functions as a replacement for individual or even multiple teeth. Moreover, they are designed to look like completely natural teeth.
Pros of Dental Implants
There are several advantages of dental implants over dentures or traditional bridges. Here is a close look at the various advantages of implants:
1). Permanent teeth. Dental implants are made of titanium, a material that is strong and durable. Once the dental implant is placed, new bone will grow around it and keep it in position. The replacement crown that sits on top of the implant may need to be replaced every few years but the implant itself should last a lifetime.
2). Natural feel. Traditional tooth replacement alternatives such as dentures or dental bridges can produce clicking sounds or slip. They also have the potential to affect your speech. On the other hand, implants act as a complete natural replacement which means it will feel like a natural tooth.
3). No bone loss. Your jaw supports your teeth but teeth also support the jaw bone. If a lost tooth is not replaced, the bone may start deteriorating. Since the dental implant acts like a natural root, it prevents bone loss by supporting the jaw.
4). Easy to maintain. A dental implant is a complete replacement for a natural tooth which means you don’t need to do anything special to maintain it. The only thing you need to do is maintain good oral hygiene.
Cons of Dental Implants
While there are many advantages of implants, there are also some potential downsides. These include the following:
1). Not meant for everyone. Dental implants can be used to replace all teeth, multiple teeth, or a single tooth but it does have certain requirements. There should be enough jaw bone to support an implant. If there isn’t enough jawbone to support an implant, bone grafting or a sinus lift may be needed to increase bone density.
2). A relatively long process. Dental implants aren’t fixed on a single day. It is a long process where you need to have multiple appointments over a period of time that may be as long as 6 months. In short, it isn’t a quick fix but once it is done, you won’t need to visit your dentist for its replacement as it is a permanent alternative.
3). Expensive. Implants can be an expensive option compared to dental bridges or dentures. With that said, it is a one-time investment. On the other hand, you will need to get dental bridges or dentures replaced every few years which can also be costly.
4). Invasive surgery. The insertion of dental implants is a surgical procedure where minor operations are performed on the gum and jaw bone. Keep in mind that implants have a high success rate. The dentist will use a local anaesthetic to numb the area before the surgical procedure.
Are Dental Implants Right for You?
While there are several advantages of dental implants along with certain limitations, it is a fact that dental implants are not meant for everyone. Whether they are the right solution for you can only be determined by you and your dentist.
If you need a replacement for a missing tooth or multiple teeth, you also have the option of dental bridges and partial or full dentures. However, bridges and dentures have their own limitations. Generally, a dental implant is a more natural and more durable solution for tooth replacement.
To conclude, dental implants offer a lot of advantages. They are a permanent solution if you maintain them properly. Implants can be used to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth or all teeth. It’s can be an expensive option initially but is much cheaper than dental bridges or dentures over a lifetime.
With that said, not everyone is the right candidate to get a dental implant. You should consult your dentist to find out whether dental implants are the right solution for you.
Book a Consultation for Dental Implants in North Adelaide
Here at North Adelaide Smiles, we specialise in dental implants. Our dentists will be happy to explain the pros and cons of dental implants and help you make an informed decision.