Dental Implants: Frequently Asked Questions

What are dental implants?

There are three main parts of an implant supported restoration: the implant or implants.  The implant is titanium post, cylindrical in shape, often tapering downwards, and having threads at it lower part. It acts as a tooth root.  The abutment is a mechanical interface between the implant and the restoration tooth or teeth. It may be prebuilt into the implant or attached after screwing the implant into the jawbone.

Why do people choose dental implants?

There are plenty of reasons. The following are the salient ones.

  • People go for dental implants because of all the possible tooth replacement structures and dental implants look the most natural and feel the most natural.
  • Unlike other replacement options, e.g., dentures, implant supported teeth or dentures do not fall out accidentally while eating or speaking.
  • Dental implants are a superior choice for the reason that they help maintain the jawbone, keeping the facial structure intact. Other options can result in bone loss over a period of time.

What is the process for getting a dental implant?

Start with selecting a qualified and experienced implant dentist. After proper examination, he will prepare your jaw for the implant and then screw in the implant. The implant screw takes a few months to integrate with bone. In this period surfaces of the implant and the surrounding bone will, in a manner, merge together to form a strong bond. After this, the dentist will attach the abutment to the implant, and connect the replacement tooth to the abutment.

Dentures or Dental Implants? A Helpful Checklist

If you are looking for replacement teeth you have to decide whether to get conventional dentures or implants. Here is small checklist which may help you make a correct decision.

Do I want my replacement teeth to look just like as if they were natural teeth?

Do I want to get replacement teeth which are the best currently offered by dental technology?

Do I want to be able to talk, laugh, and eat without the fear of my replacement teeth falling out?

Do I want replacement teeth which will not cause bone loss in my jaws?

Do I want to avoid the need to take my replacement teeth out every night and keep them soaked in a soaking solution?

Do I want a long lasting replacement for my original teeth?

Do I want replacement teeth that will not slip when I kiss a dear one?

Do I want a tooth replacement which I can consider a good value for money in the long term?

Do I want to be free from the risk of food remnants getting between the gums and under the replacement teeth?

If your answer to any one of the above question is yes, you should choose implants. Dental implants have all those desirable characteristics. It will be a decision you may recall with pleasure later, and of course, smile.

There is, however, a word of caution. The dentist you choose for giving you implants should be qualified and experienced.  It may be useful to choose a person who is listed in the searchable directory of credentialed implant dentists of the American Academy of Implant dentistry.

Top 5 Reasons People Choose Dentures

1.    Dentures mean a comparatively low up-front investment. If lowest cost is your priority in the short-term, then dentures could be your option.

2.    Dentures can be made very quickly. Normally they can be provided in a day or two, and in special cases, dentures can be produced even in a matter of hours.

3.    Dentures are provided by a much greater number of dentists.  Such dentists are available virtually everywhere. Hence, you don’t have to search for a source for your dentures. One may be located within a short distance of your place.

4.    Dentures have been made and used for centuries now. The technology had matured a long time ago. Preparation of dentures is very simple compared to implants. Hence, more people are able to provide dentures.

5.    Dentures are made from materials which are readily available and low cost. They do not require special materials, and hence the time to produce and cost of production are low.

Top 5 Reasons People Don’t Choose Dentures

1.    Dentures are not very natural-looking option for replacement teeth. Since people in affluent societies value their appearance very highly, they will try to obtain the better alternative which happens to be implants.

2.    Dentures have a shorter average life and may need repeated replacements. Replacement procedure will also take time which costs. Hence, dentures may be less cost effective in the long run.

3.    Dentures may cause bone loss in the jawbone where teeth are missing. Loss of jawbone can cause changes in your appearance, and may also necessitate new dentures.

4.    Dentures have to be removed from the mouth for cleaning and rinsing. They have to be soaked overnight. These requirements are not appreciated by users.

5.    Dentures can cause a lot embarrassment right in the midst of important social moments by slipping out or clicking when the wearer is laughing, talking, kissing, or eating.  This embarrassment could be the greatest single reason for avoiding dentures when implants are available.

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