Are Dental Implants Right for Me?
Dental implants provide a secure, natural-feeling form of tooth replacement for the millions of people in the United States with missing teeth. Whether you have lost teeth to injury, periodontal disease, or tooth decay it is likely that dental implants are the best solution for you. Willis Family Dentistry would be happy to review your health history and conduct a dental/radiographic examination to assess whether you are a good candidate for dental implants. Looking for dental implant experts? We have you covered.
How Dental Implants Work
Dental implants are small titanium posts anchored into the patient’s jaw bone in place of missing teeth. The implants act as a new tooth root, fusing with the bone and providing a solid foundation for permanent or removable replacement teeth. Your new teeth are matched to your existing ones for a natural look. Implants offer significant advantages over traditional “replacement” methods like bridges or dentures.
The Advantages of Dental Implants
Comparing Dentures and Tooth-Supported Bridges to Dental Implants
Look and Sound Natural
Dental implants look and feel like real teeth. They can boost your confidence and restore your smile, so you can feel like yourself. Without teeth the jaw rises giving the human face a sunken look and changing your appearance over time. This sagging face can be interpreted as looking sad or despondent. While dentures help fill this space, dental implants come as close to restoring your natural teeth as possible, filling out your jawline and looking real. Implants also do not move in your mouth. You don’t have to worry about a dental implant slipping or falling out like dentures. Dental implants are silent, and their fit ensures that you speak naturally rather than exerting effort to pronounce words you wouldn’t normally think twice about.
Eat What You Want
Dental implants allow you to eat what you want again. The titanium posts provide dependability and stability that empower patients to live a normal life, eating apples, corn or your favorite food without stress. Dental implants don’t shift during chewing like conventional dentures, and they’re less fragile than bridges. If you’ve struggled with uncomfortable dentures or limited your food choices because of tooth-supported bridges, dental implants can improve your quality of life. Not worrying while you eat or adapting your diet is a huge benefit to dental implants.
Protect Your Jawbone and Dental Health
Dental implants encourage bone growth and protect the jawbone’s integrity. When empty spaces are left in your mouth it can expose you to the risk of bone loss in your jaw. In the absence of teeth the jawbone can recede, deteriorating over time. Such deterioration can also pose a risk to neighboring teeth. Implants act like your natural teeth encouraging jawbone strength and robustness by acting as a stimulant to bone growth. Dentures do not provide the necessary resistance for jawbone health, and tooth-supported bridges actually require neighboring teeth to be ground down in the process of creating the bridge support. Dental implants are the only tooth replacement that protects your jawbone from attrition and encourages a healthy bone structure.
Durable and Long-Lasting
Dental implants are long-lasting. A quality implant when properly cared for can last a lifetime. By comparison the lifespan of tooth-supported bridges is five to seven years, and the lifespan of dentures is seven to ten years. The cost of repairing or replacing bridges and dentures is not insignificant and can mount over time. The durability of dental implants means less maintenance costs over the long run as well as peace of mind. Dental implants will allow you to forget what it was like before the procedure.
Ease of Care
Unlike dentures and tooth-supported bridges, which require special cleaning processes, dental implants can be cared for just like your natural teeth – brushing and flossing as you normally would. You can forget about the inconvenience and embarrassment of removing dentures to clean them. Moreover, the crown that is mounted to your dental implants cannot develop dental caries or cavities. While consistent oral hygiene is still important to your gum health and that of your remaining teeth, the crown itself is safe.
Dental Implant Experts
The Willis Family Dentistry team is extremely experienced with dental implants. Dr. Brian Podbesek and Dr. Amanda Magid are dental implant experts with AEGD degrees and specialized surgical experience. During your consultation visit, they will assess your specific needs and health history. They’ll be happy to address any questions or concerns that you may have and ensure that you are comfortable and well-informed with regard to the procedure.
What Does a Dental Implant Procedure Involve?
Generally, the dental implant procedure takes place over the course of two visits. During the first visit, the titanium posts are secured to the jaw bone, which are then given three to six months to bond to the bone and develop a stable foundation for the crown. During this period the surface of the gums cover the implants, and temporary dentures can be worn. Once the implants have fused with the jaw bone, we will install a small healing collar and begin the process of creating your new teeth. The implant-restored crown is custom matched to your existing teeth. The new teeth are created over the titanium posts, providing a strong and natural replacement. The entire process generally takes six to eight months.
How Do I Care for a Dental Implant?
The beauty of dental implants is that you can care for them as you would your natural teeth. Dental implants require no extra planning. Brush and floss as part of your normal tooth care regimen. During your regularly scheduled cleaning appointment, we’ll inspect your dental implants to ensure they’re continuing to perform well for you.
How Do I Schedule a Visit to Discuss Dental Implants?
If you feel that dental implants may be right for you or would like to know more about dental implants, we’d be happy to give you an assessment and answer any further questions you may have. To schedule a complimentary consult please call our Fishersville office at 540-885-8037, our Churchville office at 540-337-6004, our Stuart’s Draft officer at 540-414-8423 , or our Crozet office at 434-823-4080.