Dental Implants: What You Need To Know

A missing tooth can make you feel a little self-conscious about your smile. There are options for you, there are bridges or dental implants. The difference between the two is how long they last - dental implants will last longer, and dental implants are permanent, while bridges can be removed (like a denture). Dental implants are the better option. See below for information about dental implants to see if they are right for you.

What Is it?

A dental implant is an artificial root that looks like almost like a screw. There is an abutment connector piece, then the artificial tooth that attaches to the connector. The implant is permanent and the artificial tooth will look just like your natural tooth. Since it is implanted directly into the jaw, there is not any slippage as there is with dentures or bridges. The implant functions just as your natural tooth would. You should be able to eat just as you did before without any restrictions. 

Who Is Eligible For Dental Implants?

If you have a missing tooth (or teeth), you may be eligible for dental implants. However, if you do not have a healthy jaw bone you may not be eligible. The jaw bone needs to be in good shape, otherwise the implant cannot be inserted into the jaw bone. Sometimes if you have had a missing tooth for quite some time, the bone may wear down. A dental implant can help preserve your bone.

How Do You Care For Dental Implants?

You should care for dental implants much like your natural teeth. They should be brushed and flossed along with your natural teeth. You should brush twice daily for two minutes. Use a soft-bristle toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Change your toothbrush after you get sick to prevent spreading germs.

You should also see your dentist for regular checkups, no matter if you have dental implants, dentures or otherwise. A visit to the dentist can help prevent minor problems from getting worse. These minor problems can be found by your dentist and taken care of immediately. Be sure to see your dentist every six months for a regular checkup. 

How Long Do Implants Last?

Dental implants can last an entire lifetime if you care for them (and your natural teeth) properly. Dentures and bridges can break over time and you may need several different sets over time. Implants can last forever without needing any replacement at all. 

Talk to your dentist about dental implants to get your beautiful smile back.