Missing teeth can have a significant negative impact on your life. They can affect the way you speak or chew. A missing tooth even causes the teeth adjacent to it to move. This is because teeth around a missing tooth affect the way you bite, causing more stress on your teeth and jaw joints. These are just some reasons why you should consider dental implants.
What is a dental implant?
A dental implant is an artificial tooth root crafted from titanium. The titanium root is carefully positioned into the jawbone where a missing tooth is being replaced. A connector is then attached to the titanium rod, which then supports the new tooth.
A dental implant appears and functions like a natural tooth. Once fitted you can chew and speak normally. They are the ideal solution for those who no longer want to struggle with deteriorating teeth, or who are tired of the discomfort of poorly fitting dentures and bridges.
What is the dental implant procedure?
The dental implant procedure is performed in three phases over a period of one year. In the first phase, only the titanium root is inserted. The dentist will start by making a small incision in the gum where the missing tooth is going to be replaced, then a hole is drilled into the jawbone, and the titanium rod is inserted.
The implant is then allowed to heal for 6 to 12 weeks. This is usually the second phase. It is crucial as the implant needs to bond well with the jawbone.
Once it has firmly bonded with the jawbone, the third phase commences. This stage involves placing a connector (also called an abutment) on the implant. Here the dentist attaches the abutment to the implant into the jawbone which will firmly hold the new teeth. The dentist will then make impressions of your teeth to make a mold of the new teeth. Once the new tooth is made, it is attached to the abutment.
The dental implant procedure is not painful as it is performed under local anesthesia.