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What Are Dental Implants?

Diagram of Implant, Abutment, and Crown in Mouth

Dental implants are a major innovation in the field of dentistry that have only emerged in the last couple decades. The implants are constructed from light weight titanium, which is both resilient and biocompatible. This means that its presence will not cause irritation to the surrounding tissue once the implant has been installed. The actual implant is designed to replace the damaged root of the tooth and connecting into the jawbone. The benefits are that, once installed, the implant stays firmly secured and hidden from view. This allows a false crown to be attached in place of the missing tooth so that no difference is notable. The crown looks just like a real tooth and requires less maintenance than a traditional replacement would. 

If you are considering talking to your dentist about receiving dental implants, here is some important information that might help you make your decision. In terms of time, the implantation process can vary greatly based on the specific situation and the strength of the teeth and bones of each patient. Strong bones adapt and heal more quickly, brittle bones more slowly. As a result treatment can be anywhere from six weeks to six months before completion, sometimes more.

A single implant can be used to support multiple missing teeth, as well as traditional teeth replacements like false teeth or dentures. This means preexisting dental measure do not necessarily have to be replaced if you decide to proceed with dental implants. In terms of how many teeth a single implant can support, this once again varies based on the strength of the bone. Strong bones can hold and support the weight of multiple teeth but weaker bones cannot.

Dental implants are much like regular teeth. They can be quite resilient but only if properly cared for. If you apply all of the daily maintenance that you would for normal teeth the implant will stay strong and healthy. In that case it will last for years and years just like your normal teeth do. If not properly maintained however, plaque build-up can cause pain, irritation, or structural damage that weakens the implants over-all effectiveness. While the implants themselves are solidly fixed to the jawbone, occasionally a crown may come loose or crack. Thankfully, loose or damaged crowns can be replaced with relative ease. Please note the regular grinding of the teeth will cause increased wear on the implants and should be avoided.

As you can see, dental implants function much like normal teeth do. If you take the time to care for them they will remain healthy and strong for years to come. Once installed you should be able to go about your daily life barely even noticing their presence.

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