Dental implants are widely used as replacements for missing teeth. Although a dental implant only replaces the root of a missing tooth, the implant is paired with other prosthetic dental devices, such as crowns, dentures, and bridges, to complete the needed restoration.
Here are some of the benefits of an implant-based tooth replacement.
Many people dislike dentures because of their tendency to slip from their desired position. The movement of the appliance can be embarrassing and uncomfortable.
Dental implants do not migrate from their position. The devices are held in place by the bone of the jaw and the soft tissue of the mouth.
When an implant is surgically placed into the jawbone, it undergoes a healing process that takes a few months. The process, which is called osseointegration, includes the growth of the jawbone cells around the implant. As a result, the implant integrates with the jawbone and becomes stable enough to support other tooth-replacement devices, such as dentures and bridges.
The health of the jawbone is dependent on regular stimulation from mastication. However, after a tooth is lost, the bone receives no stimulation at the location of the missing tooth. As a result, the bone shrinks at the extraction site. This shrinkage can alter the appearance of the face, making it look old and haggard.
When a dental implant is used, the stimulation needed to support the health of the jawbone is still relayed to the bone. Thus, the implant helps the jawbone remain healthy.
A dental implant-based tooth replacement does not require specialized tools or creams to clean the area around the device. Instead, the dental patient can still use a soft-bristled toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss to clean the mouth.
Still, the area around the dental implant must be kept clean in order to avoid conditions that can jeopardize the success of the implant, such as peri-implantitis, a type of gum inflammation that can develop around an implant. Peri-implantitis, like other forms of gum disease, occurs when plaque and debris are not properly removed from the gums and other areas of the oral cavity.
By keeping the area around an implant free of plaque and bacteria, you can help avoid gum inflammation and infections. The removal of the oral bacteria is especially helpful since the acid released by oral microbes can cause the gums to become inflamed. With minimal maintenance, a dental implant can last a lifetime.
To learn more about dental implants and their advantages, schedule an appointment with a dentist in your local area.