Dental implants are usually the treatment of choice to replace a missing or several missing teeth. With today’s technology, we can implant a space age material, titanium, into the jawbone to anchor a tooth, bridge or even a denture.
Implants look and feel natural and they actually stimulate bone growth. A dental implant is the titanium post that is placed in the jaw bone. Once the implant is in place, bone begins to grow and attach to the implant. When this has occurred (usually 6-8 weeks) a crown, bridge or denture can be anchored to it.
Implants provide superior benefits to all other tooth replacement options. Although it does require a surgical procedure, implants are actually less invasive then the traditional alternative to tooth replacement: a bridge. This is because a bridge requires the irreversible removal of healthy tooth structure from adjacent teeth. This can lead to nerve damage to these teeth and require a root canal or even loss of these teeth as well. An implant can replace the missing tooth without any damage to the surrounding teeth.
Implants are also used with dentures to give them something to attach to. Most denture wearers are aware of the challenges associated with dentures; the pain of the dentures digging into the gums, the taste and stickiness of adhesives to “glue” the dentures in place, and the excess plastic that crowds the tongue and cheek. These problems can be greatly improved and often eliminated with the help of implants. That’s because special attachments are fastened to the implants that can securely snap the dentures to place. The result is a less bulky denture that feels more secure, is comfortable and allows the wearer to smile with confidence.