Gone are those days when missing teeth space becomes permanent in one’s mouth. Nowadays, several options for the replacement of natural teeth are available following a loss of teeth. Missing teeth space alters the overall appearance of the face, the smile and the look of the individual. Hence, patients with missing natural teeth often seek dental care for teeth replacement options.
The two major dental procedures for replacing missing natural teeth are:
- Use of removable dentures
- Dental implants
Removable dentures, simply known as dentures, are superficial dental materials worn on the mouth in place of missing teeth. Dentures offer a convenient way to replace missing natural teeth, but they do not have the strength for other basic functions of natural teeth, like chewing. Hence, they need to be removed when you need to eat, sleep, etc.
In contrast, dental implants provide a very strong and stable replacement for natural teeth and have thus become the gold standard for replacing missing natural teeth today. People who once used dentures are beginning to turn to dental implants for a definitive solution to their missing teeth. However, a few questions linger in their minds, “How strong are dental implants? Can they perform close to natural teeth? Are dental implants safe? What is the cost?”, and so on.
Dental implants offer lifelong support for teeth lost due to decay, gum disease or teeth injuries. They are strong and several times more stable than traditional dentures. But how do their strength and stability compare to those of natural teeth? We took this question to a team of dentists in America and here is what we found.
Summary of Dental Implant Procedure
Dental implants are metal posts or screws that are surgically inserted into your jawbone to replace natural missing teeth. After the post is fused to the bone material of the alveolar bone, a crown (an outer cap that makes the entire structure resemble the shape of a tooth) is fixed over it. Naturally, the white part of your teeth forms the crown but in the case of denture or implant, a different material that very closely resembles the crown is made and attached to the underlying implant. The post is fixed into the bone material and over time, they integrate with the surrounding bone while it anchors a crown, a bridge or even a permanent denture to recreate natural-looking teeth.
Unlike traditional dental bridges or dentures, dental implants are permanently fixed in place and can last a lifetime with proper care. Dental implants save you the time and inconvenience of removing and reinstalling the artificial teeth each time, amongst other advantages. However, a few people are hesitant to get dental implants because they are unsure if dental implants are as stable and durable as natural teeth.
Dental Implants vs Natural Teeth?
Dental implants, as the name implies, are directly implanted in the jawbone. Thus, they are very strong and durable. Dental implants are by far the strongest and most durable options for natural teeth replacement. They also retain the complete chewing power and mouth function that natural teeth offer.
Since dental implants are fused to the jawbone, they are immobile and stable. With adequate care and good oral hygiene, dental implants are as stable as natural teeth and can last a lifetime.
Natural teeth are always the preferred and best option but we are talking about an alternative when natural teeth have been lost. Dental implants are the closest to natural teeth in terms of strength, stability and permanence.
Are Dental Implants Expensive?
Dental implants are one of the most expensive replacements for natural teeth. They typically cost around $1500 to $2000 per implant depending on who and where the procedure is done but their numerous benefits, strength and durability make them worth choosing over other cheaper and quicker alternatives of natural teeth replacement.
Are Dental Implants Protective?
Dental implants are directly fused into the jawbone and do not require any further external support. This is unlike what you find with braces or dental bridges that put stress on other natural teeth, making them protective to the other teeth and mouth structures. This helps prevent losing further natural teeth or compromising their health.
What Are Some Complications of Dental Implants?
Dental implants offer the best choice of natural teeth replacement but they are not free from complications. Just like natural teeth in the mouth, they require good oral hygiene and adequate care, as well as regular dental clinic visits.
Most of the complications of dental implants usually result from factors that could damage natural teeth, so nothing significantly different here. Dental implants may loosen over time due to neglect.
Poor oral hygiene can lead to a buildup of bacteria around the gum line and if not treated in time, the infection can spread deeper leading to bone loss. By taking care of the implants as you would for normal teeth and routinely seeing your dentist, most of the complications of dental implants can be avoided.
Just like any surgical procedure, dental implants are also prone to complications related to delayed tissue healing (bone), nerve damage, prolonged bleeding, jaw fractures, and so on.
The risks and complications you are taking for dental implants include infection, damage to other teeth and teeth structure, delayed bone healing, nerve damage, prolonged bleeding, jaw fractures and more. If you are willing to take these risks, dental implants might be right for you.
Who Can Get Dental Implants?
Like most other dental procedures, certain criteria must have to be met before you can get dental implants done. Dental implants are made of strong metallic posts that are fused into the bones. This, therefore, requires that the individual must have healthy bones before they can get dental implants.
Dental implants are the strongest and most long-lasting replacement for natural teeth. To get dental implant replacement teeth, you can visit the nearest dentist to you or contact us to help you find one.
The strength of dental implants gives you the confidence that they will not be easily dislodged by normal activities. You can sleep, chew and drink with your replacement teeth on without worrying about dislodging them or causing other problems. These amongst other reasons make dental implants a better alternative to removable dentures.
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