Dental implants are artificial teeth made of titanium stubs that can be fitted inside the jaw over which an artificial tooth can be affixed. It is placed by a periodontist into a patients jaw to hold a replacement tooth or bridge. Dental implants are used to replace one or more teeth without affecting the bordering teeth, they support a bridge and eliminate the need for a removable partime denture, provide support for a denture, making it more secure and comfortable.
Dental implants are ideal options for people in good general oral health who have lost a tooth or teeth due to periodontal disease, injury or some other reason. They can be used to support a number of dental prostheses including crowns, implant- supported bridges or dentures. They can also be used as anchorage for orthodontic tooth movement. There are three major types of dental implants: artificial bone substitute implant, endosteal implant and sub- periosteal implants. Artificial bone substitute implants use a calcium substitute to fit over the jaw bone. This substitute bonds over the existing jaw bone over time. Endosteal implants are wedged into the jaw in place of the dental root. Sub- periosteal implants are specialized implants which are preferred for elderly persons who can no longer wear dentures.
The dental implants surgeries are no longer painful due to the use of local anesthetics that reduce the pain during the dental surgery. They need to be looked after by regular brushing, flossing and enough dental check up.
Implant surgery brings about remarkable change in the life of a patient s it helps to regain original smiles. Having gaps where teeth are missing affects the way the jaw closes. The remaining teeth begin to tilt and drift into the gaps. Also, food can get trapped in the spaces and increase the risk of decay and gum disease. As teeth are lost it becomes difficult to chew food. And over time, the jaw bone continues to disintegrate until it becomes very difficult to place any dental restoration.
Lost teeth should always be restored as this retains your oral health by preventing bone loss, reducing movement of the surrounding teeth and avoid excessive decay. It should be noted that prolonged absence of teeth/ a tooth severely limits the possibility for restorations. They affect confidence and well being. Dental implants greatly enhance dental health as well as self esteem.