What are dental implants?
Dental Implants are a way to add a false tooth to your gum where your original tooth has been lost. A dental prosthesis is used, such as a crown, denture or bridge, and it’s literally surgically implanted into your jaw bone. Modern materials, such as titanium, are used in a process called osseointegration, in which the material is formed with the bone. The implant is usually added first, allowing it time to bond with the jaw bone, and then afterward the prosthetic is added.
Why use dental implants?
Dental implants are perfect for replacing either a single tooth, or for supporting a fixed bridge where two or more teeth have been lost. Planning where and how many dental implants is a key component to the long-term success of the chewing and comfort can play a significant factor. Long term success rates of dental implants average from 93 to 98 percent for the fixture and up to 15 year lifespans for the prosthetic tooth or teeth.
What about dentures?
Dental implants are great as an alternative to dentures. Many people find dentures uncomfortable and much prefer the simplicity of dental implants. If several teeth are missing, dental implants may provide a better solution to a bridge, as the gap may be too long. Crowns or bridges supported by dental implants do not rely on adjacent teeth for support, and thus are more reliable. After natural teeth are lost the bone of the gum tends to shrink. Placement of dental implants allows functional chewing forces to be transmitted to the bone and tends to prevent the normal loss of bone which occurs after natural teeth are lost.
Dr Lance West is Aucklands foremost expert in Dental implants. If you’ve lost a tooth and conventional dentistry can only take you so far, give us a call today.