Gum disease, if left untreated, often results in tooth loss, leaving many patients to wonder if they can get dental implants. Even gum disease patients who do not develop the advanced form of the disease, known as periodontitis, may want to replace missing or decayed teeth with implants. Is this possible, or will unhealthy gums…
What You Need to Know Before Choosing Dental Implants
If you are thinking about getting dental implants, you may have some apprehension and fear. Suffering from tooth loss is challenging. It can affect your oral health and the way you feel about your appearance. Still, the implant process is long and invasive. It is helpful to understand more about this procedure before you get started. Doing this not only informs you of what will take place but helps you to feel more comfortable about it.
A description of dental implants
Implants are permanent artificial teeth that restore a person’s smile. Implants also improve the function of the mouth. These consist of three parts: a titanium post, an abutment, and a natural-looking crown. The dentist places the post deep into the jawbone and attaches the abutment to it. The crown goes on the abutment and looks like the surrounding teeth in size, shape, and color. Implants allow the patient to eat most foods and have a full smile once again.
Implants have cosmetic benefits
Professionals at any cosmetic dentistry office will tell patients that dental implants can improve a person’s self-esteem. Even missing a single tooth may keep an individual from wanting to smile. Such a person may avoid meeting new people or socializing. Implants fill in these embarrassing gaps.
Implants have health benefits
Deciding to get dental implants should not only be about a person’s appearance. Losing a permanent tooth is a dental emergency. Missing teeth can lead to bone loss and jaw shrinkage. After this happens, the shape of the person’s face can change.
A single missing tooth can alter the entire facial structure. Remaining natural teeth can start to drift and become loose. Implants prevent these issues from occurring. Also, with an increased ability to eat more foods, the person will get more nutrition.
The process is lengthy
People should be aware that the process takes time before deciding to get dental implants. The patient will usually make at least three visits to the dentist’s office after the initial consultation. There will also be follow-up appointments after the patient gets the implants. The first appointment will include X-rays and impressions. The dentist may also have to extract any affected teeth at this point.
The time frame from this preparatory work until the patient gets the implants can be up to nine months or more. The procedures are invasive, so there must be a period of healing. Also, the implants must fuse to the bone for them to be effective. There can also be some pain and discomfort following each stage of the process. Dental implants also take time to get accustomed to.
Feeling prepared for your treatment
It is normal to feel nervous about getting dental implants. The process is involved and has some challenges. However, the benefits can lead to a brand-new smile and good oral health. If you learn more about these procedures ahead of time, you can feel more at ease going into the surgeries. Talk to your dentist today if you have any questions or concerns.
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