Before you consider dental implants, you need to know what a dental implant is and why it will help you. A dental implant is composed of three basic parts:
The implant – The implant is a small titanium post that will surgically place in your jawbone. Over a period of three to six months, the titanium implant will become naturally fused with the existing bone mass through a process known as “osseointegration”. This creates a solid foundation that allows dental implants to function as natural teeth.
The abutment – After the tissue surrounding the implant has healed, the abutment will be put in place. This is a piece of metal that covers the implant and holds the crown in place.
The dental crown – Finally your will give you your crown. This is a small piece of ceramic that is shaped like a natural tooth to give dental implants a more natural appearance.
The benefits of dental implants
Because placing the dental implants within the jaw, the surrounding bone and tissue mass is receiving stimulation to prevent deterioration. Alternative treatments such as dentures and fixed bridges do not provide this. In fact, dentures will need to be replaced every five to seven years because of tissue loss. When you factor in the risk of complication and the cost of needed repairs, there is an economical advantage that comes with dental implants.
In addition to the above health benefits, there are also several cosmetic advantages that come with dental implants. For example, dental implants do not slip out of place or cause difficulty eating and speaking. Also, dental implants look and feel like natural teeth. This gives patients more comfort and confidence. In fact, it is not uncommon for patients with dentures or a fixed bridge to switch to dental implants.