Dental Implants 101: Celebrating Dental Implant Month
August is Dental Implant Month!
OK, maybe that’s not exciting to you. Even so, we thought we’d take some inspiration from Gwinnett County schools, which will be back in session before you know it. Today’s “lesson” is full of background information about dental implants.
We’ll be answering some common questions people have about implants, but there’s one question we can’t answer online — Are dental implants right for you?
What Are Dental Implants?
The simplest answer is that dental implants are replacements for the roots of your teeth.
Implants are important because they are the key to getting complete teeth replacements. Dental crowns, dental bridges, and dentures replace the natural crowns (the part you can see) of your lost teeth.
Implants give us a way to replace the roots, which are anchored in your jawbone. By getting implants, you will make your teeth replacements stronger and more stable.
When Should Someone Get Dental Implants?
In a perfect world, you would get a dental implant or implants as soon as possible after a tooth or teeth fall out, get knocked out, or are removed.
Without roots, you will begin to lose bone mass in your jaw. As this happens your jaw will become smaller and weaker. If you still have teeth, this can put you at risk of losing more of them. If all your teeth are gone, your shrinking jaw can affect your appearance and how your dentures fit.
By getting dental implants, you can maintain your bone mass, which is better for your long-term oral health.
Often people focus on the cosmetic effects of lost teeth. Losing teeth does change your smile, but the bigger problem may be what’s happening under your gums.
Who Are Dental Implants For?
Frankly, dental implants are for anyone who is missing teeth.
If you have lost one tooth, you can get a dental implant and a dental crown to replace it.
If you had multiple teeth knocked out, dental implants can support a dental bridge.
And if you are missing a complete row of teeth, possibly due to tooth decay or gum disease, then a series of carefully placed implants can make dentures function nearly as well as natural teeth.
With the development of mini implants, more people than ever can enjoy the benefits that come with have dental implants, too.
Why Would Someone Want Mini Implants?
Mini implants are a great option for someone who has lived for years without teeth. In that time, he or she could lose a lot of bone mass from his or her jawbone. As a result, he or she may not have enough bone left to support a full-sized dental implant.
As you would expect, mini implants are smaller versions of standard implants. This means they can be placed where full-sized implants won’t fit.
Before mini implants, a patient with too little bone mass would need to undergo a bone graft. This amounts to a bone tissue transplant. After the transplanted tissue is put in place, it bonds with the existing bone tissue as the patient healed. After months of recovery, that patient finally might be ready to get implants.
With mini implants, a bone graft is often unnecessary. Mini implants could save you the time and expense of another procedure and allow you to take advantage of what implants can do sooner.
How Long Can Dental Implants Last?
Dental implants can last for the rest of your life with proper can and maintenance. If you get implants, we will discuss how you should care for them.
Gum disease is one of the biggest threats to dental implants. That’s why it’s important to keep up a good oral hygiene routine even if your “teeth” are no longer natural.
Now, dental crowns, bridges, and dentures may need to be replaced after several years of use, but those replacements can be attached to your existing implants.
Where Can You Get Dental Implants?
If you live in or near Snellville, GA, then you can get them at Parkway Dental. Our dentists have the training and the experience with implants to make your teeth replacements stable and secure.