Dental implant technology is now the most popular way to replace missing teeth in your mouth. Through the use of a titanium implant and a synthetic crown, your dentist will be able to create a tooth that looks and feels natural. While it will take several visits to your dentist to completely restore a tooth, most patients are thrilled with the results. A tooth replaced using implant technology doesn't need to be treated any differently than the rest of your teeth and you can expect that it will last permanently. When you have a space in your mouth where a tooth once was, it's time to talk to your dentist about implants.
How Dental Implants Work
Your dentist will place a small titanium rod in your jaw, which will act much like the root of a natural tooth. It will take some time for the rod to fully embed into your jaw, and this is why the process can take several months. Once the rod is secure in your mouth and not at risk to fall out, the dentist will secure a crown to the top of the rod. The crown is made from synthetic materials, and will be designed to fit in the space where your missing tooth is. Once the rod and crown are combined, you'll have a new tooth.
Poor Candidates for Dental Implants
If you are a smoker or you are diabetic, you may not be a good candidate to receive dental implants. The simple motion of smoking mixed with the dry mouth that it causes makes the majority of dental implants fail. The good news is, if you are a smoker and you quit, you will be able to get dental implants to restore your smile. If you are a diabetic, you have to have blood sugar levels under control in order to get implants. If your healing ability is stunted because of poor blood sugar levels, your implant is likely to fail.
When you have missing teeth in your mouth, talk with your dentist about your options. If you have more than one missing tooth in an area, you could also get a bridge to replace the missing teeth. A bridge is several teeth attached together, which are secured into your mouth. This can be done by attaching the bridge to nearby teeth with a strong wire, or by using implant rods to provide a base for the bridge.