Over the past several years, dental implants have emerged as the most effective and most natural-looking option for tooth replacement. They’re also the most natural feeling, since they’re implanted directly into your jawbone, making them stationary and completely functional. They also help preserve the jawbone, stimulating it to regenerate instead of suffering from atrophy.
What Causes Jawbone Atrophy?
Part of the jawbone is designed specifically to support the teeth. It forms the socket and surrounds the tooth root. When your teeth fall out, the body realizes there is no root in the socket and reclaims a portion of the bone. The minerals that make up the bone are absorbed into the bloodstream. The result is less space between the upper and lower jaws, giving the shrunken look stereotypically depicted in old people who have lost their teeth.
If you choose to replace your missing teeth with dentures or with a bridge, the bone will naturally atrophy. There is nothing in the socket to stimulate the bone to grow. With dental implants, however, the artificial root is set directly in the socket. The bone bonds to the titanium root and is stimulated to keep growing just as it would with a natural tooth.
Advantages of Dental Implants
Dental implants also provide other advantages. They’re a staple in cosmetic dentistry to replace one or two missing teeth that affect the look of your smile. They can also be used to replace an entire arc of missing teeth, or even all your teeth, top and bottom. If your jawbone has already suffered some atrophy, fewer implants can be used to support a removable denture, again providing natural-looking teeth that don’t move around in your mouth.
Other advantages to dental implants include:
- You can eat any foods you like, including corn on the cob and crisp vegetables
- Traditional implants don’t need to be removed for cleaning
- Implants don’t need to be periodically remade or relined
Whether you’ve lost one tooth or all your teeth, dental implants provide the best possible option for tooth replacement. Contact our office today to set up a consultation!