Are you considering dental implants as an option for a tooth replacement ? Our dentists in Whitehorse share what they are and the pros and cons of this procedure.
What are dental implants?
Dental implants permanently replace missing teeth. They are held in their spot with a tiny titanium rod which is implanted into the patient’s jaw bone, this implant serves as the root of the artificial tooth.
We use titanium because this type of metal is able to bond with bone. Titanium implants are very secure and stable replacements for teeth. Then we cap the dental implant with a dental crown (this looks like a natural tooth).
The implant and cap together function and look just like your natural tooth.
What are the advantages of having dental implants?
The several advantages of dental implants include:
Dental implants can be used to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth, or all teeth in the upper or lower jaw. We can combine implants with other treatment options such as a bridge or denture.
Your specific case and requirements, in addition to the density of your jaw bone, will determine the number of actual implants you need/can get. Dental implants are a popular option for many patients as they have many potential configurations.
Provided you properly care for your dental implant, it can last a lifetime. A proper at-home oral care routine is a must, as are regular visits to your dental office for cleanings and exams.
Other factors including nutrition, genetics or development of dental diseases can also impact the longevity of your dental implant.
Natural Look and Feel
As we mentioned earlier, your dental implant when paired with a bridge or crown, will function and look just like your natural tooth.
No one should be able to notice that you have artificial teeth, and you can speak, function and eat as you did before all while enjoying a quality life. Because there are no nerves in a dental implant, you wont feel any sensations.
Alternatively, any feelings you have in regards to your dental implant will come from the soft tissue around the implant. Once your implant has healed and you’ve gotten used to it, you most likely will notice very little difference between your implant and natural teeth.
Easy to Care For
Similar to bridges, crowns or other restorations, you can care for your dental implants jus like your natural teeth. They’ll need thorough brushing and flossing, and your dentist will need to check them during your regular exams.
What are potential disadvantages of dental implants?
Depending on the nature of your case, dental implants may not be for you. Here are some aspects of dental implants you may want to consider:
While dental implants may look and feel somewhat more natural than dental bridges, the dental implant process is a lengthier, and more invasive.
Depending on your treatment plan and your specific case, the entire dental implant procedure can take anywhere from 2 to 9 months to complete.
Depending on your insurance coverage and your specific dental issue, the cost of dental implants can vary. While some insurance companies pay part of the cost, others may cover the entire cost of your implants and still others may not pay for any part of it.
Check with your insurance provider to learn whether your insurance plan will cover your treatment.
In addition to the items above, you need to have enough density in your jaw bone for a dental implant treatment to be successful. If you don’t, you may still be a candidate for the procedure but would require a bone graft to transplant bone to your jaw to support the implant. This would make the process longer and more invasive.
How do I know whether dental implants or other options are right for me?
While dental implants, bridges and other restorations all have their benefits, the right choice for you will depend on your oral health needs, budget and other factors.
Ultimately, you’ll need to discuss your case with your dentist to find out which tooth replacement option would work best for you.