Tooth loss is common, especially among older adults. According to research, millions of adults are missing one or more teeth and many of those are missing all of their teeth. This dental condition causes a lot of issues. The good news is, there are several options for tooth replacement.
Dental implants are among the most popular tooth replacement solutions at Avery Dental Center in Dublin, OH is dental implants. This is because they look, feel, and function more like natural teeth than other options.
In this article, we’ll explain more about tooth loss and the problems it brings, as well as how dental implants can solve these issues.
Millions of Americans are missing one or more teeth. There are lots of reasons behind this epidemic:
For some patients, missing teeth is genetic- the teeth never erupted for one reason or another.
In some cases, teeth are missing due to being knocked out either in a sports accident, vehicle accident, or other injury/trauma.
If left untreated, gingivitis can progress to periodontitis, which can ultimately cause tooth loss. However, it is also important to note that it can be caused by tooth loss as well.
There are several other factors that could cause tooth loss:
Missing teeth must be replaced as soon as possible because, if left untreated, can lead to a variety of issues:
Missing teeth can make it difficult to chew, making eating challenging. In addition, the spaces change the way air flows through your mouth, which can cause you to develop a lisp or other speech impediment.
Your remaining teeth will naturally start to shift to close the gap.
As your teeth shift, it can cause your bite to become irregular, which can cause a variety of additional issues that require orthodontic intervention.
Your tooth roots stimulate the jawbone to keep it healthy. When you no longer have that stimulation, your jawbone will deteriorate- which will lead to additional tooth loss, keeping the cycle going.
Your teeth protect your gums as well. When you are missing teeth, your gums are exposed to bacteria, which can cause gum disease.
Dental implants are a tooth replacement solution that looks, feels, and functions more like natural teeth. There are three main pieces:
replaces tooth root
secures implant screw to crown
The process for dental implants is extensive and takes several months to a year or more.
The first step in any procedure at Avery Dental Center is a consultation. During this visit, we will perform a comprehensive exam which will include imaging. We will also discuss your personal expectations for treatment. This will help us determine if implants are right for you. If so, we will move forward with the procedure.
Some patients require prep work such as gum disease treatment, extractions, or bone grafting. These must be completed before any implants can be placed. You may require time to heal after these procedures. In some cases, implants can be placed at the same time as extractions.
The dentist will make an incision in the gum to expose the jawbone. Then a dental drill will be used to make a hole in the jawbone. The implant screw will be placed in the hole and the incision will be closed. You will be sent home to heal, which will take up to 6 months, depending on how your body heals and how well you care for the surgical site.
During this time, osseointegration will occur. This is when the jawbone and the implant fuse together, making it a permanent part of your mouth.
Once osseointegration is complete, the incision will be opened again and the abutment will be placed. This is the piece that will secure the prosthesis to the implant screw. A healing cap will be placed on the abutment to prevent the gum from healing over it.
Next, you will choose the material and color for your prosthetic teeth. Porcelain can be matched closer to natural teeth, lasts longer, and resists stains better than composite resin. However, porcelain is more expensive, and if it cracks or chips, must be replaced instead of repaired.
Composite resin is less expensive but does not last as long or resist stains as well as porcelain. While it can be matched to remaining natural teeth, it will still look artificial compared to porcelain. If composite resin cracks or chips, it can be repaired.
Typically, it takes about 2 weeks for the lab to fabricate your teeth.
Once your teeth have been placed, you will need to return in a few weeks to make sure that everything still looks right. After that, you can go back to your regularly scheduled maintenance visits every 6 months.
If you are missing one or more teeth, schedule your consultation with the team at Avery Dental Center in Dublin today. Dental implants look, feel, and function more like natural teeth than other tooth replacement solutions.
We are located at 6750 Avery Muirfield Drive, Suite B in Dublin. Our office hours are Monday from 11:30 AM to 6:30 PM, Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM, Wednesday from 11:00 AM to 7:00 PM, and Friday from 7:30 AM to 4:30 PM. We are closed on Thursdays and open on Saturdays by appointment only.
The team at Avery Dental Center in Dublin, OH is committed to providing patients with top-quality care. We believe that the key to that is making sure that patients understand procedures before undergoing them. If you have questions or concerns about dental implants, we are happy to address those. Below are some of the questions we hear most often about this procedure.