Dental implants are metal posts that are implanted into the jaw bone and to which an artificial tooth, bridge or denture can be attached. Implants have become a very popular alternative to traditional bridges and dentures in recent years, using strong, durable materials designed to provide a host of advantages to patients who choose them.
Dental implants are designed to act like a natural tooth root, securing a prosthetic tooth or crown firmly to the jaw bone. As a result, the new artificial tooth looks, feels and function just like a natural tooth, making them a more comfortable and convenient option to dentures and bridges. In addition, because implants are placed in the jawbone, they provide the same stimulation as a tooth root, helping to promote the natural turnover of jaw bone tissue that helps support other teeth and promote better oral health. Dentures and bridges rest on top of the gums and do nothing to stimulate jaw bone replacement. As a result, bone will atrophy following tooth loss, causing the roots of neighboring teeth to become loose over time.
Overdentures are similar to traditional dentures, but instead of relying on sticky dental adhesives and continual adjustments to achieve a proper fit, overdentures fasten to dental implants so they stay secure without adhesives and without frequent adjustments. The added security of dental implant attachment also means patients can feel more confident when speaking and eating.
No, dental implants require the same type of care as natural teeth – regular brushing, flossing and trips to the dentist to ensure the gums around the implants stay healthy and to keep gum disease at bay.
A bone graft supplements jaw bone that has already begun to atrophy as a result of tooth loss or infection, providing the support needed to ensure the implant is stable.
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