Missing teeth affect more than just your smile. There are six main reasons why replacing one or more missing teeth is critical to your overall health.
Teeth support the jaw and stimulate bone growth to keep it dense and strong. When a missing tooth is not replaced, the surrounding jaw area isn’t stimulated, so the unused bone begins to deteriorate and lose its density. This changes the structure of the jaw and will eventually affect your facial features.
The titanium screw in a dental implant fuses with the jawbone and takes on the role of the tooth root. It stimulates bone growth in the same way that a natural tooth would for healthy jawbone maintenance.
A missing tooth leaves a gap that neighbouring teeth can shift into. It only takes tooth decay or gum recession to cause this movement. Once one tooth begins to shift, a domino effect occurs, affecting your overall bite.
Shifting teeth affect the way they come together when you bite down. A poor bite has a negative impact on the teeth and gums, as well as the joints and muscles in the jaw, neck and head. You could start to experience unnatural tooth wear, tooth loss, temporomandibular joint dysfunction, muscle pain, and headaches.
Every tooth in the mouth has its purpose. If any of your teeth are lost, you will lose that functionality. If missing teeth aren’t replaced, you will find it more difficult to chew your food.
The back teeth are used to grind up food, especially meats, while the front teeth are used to break pieces off larger food items. You might feel your remaining teeth are working well enough, but when teeth are missing, your body feels the impact. Improper chewing can affect digestion and lead to problems like acid reflux.
The large gaps left behind by missing teeth will make it more difficult to pronounce certain sounds. It is common for people with even one missing tooth to begin slurring, whistling and spitting when they speak.
The positioning of teeth in the jaw supports the natural structure and shape of the face. As any unused jawbone begins to deteriorate, it makes the face appear sunken and aged.
Pedro helps patients replace missing teeth using state-of-the-art technology and treatment options. Modern techniques offer patients several options for the effective replacement of their missing teeth.
Of these three options — dentures, bridges, and implants — the implant is the closest alternative to a natural tooth. It functions and feels just like a natural tooth because the titanium root fuses with the jawbone.
An implant also has a longer lifespan than both dentures and bridges. Dentures should be refitted or replaced every five to 10 years, while bridges have a lifespan of up to 15 years. Dental implants are incredibly durable, often lasting 20 years or more.
Another advantage is that a dental implant is self-supporting and doesn’t depend on the health of adjacent teeth. It stimulates bone growth in the jaw, which means it will not deteriorate and shrink back. Neither of the other two options offers this benefit.
The first step in the dental implant process is a thorough examination with Pedro to ensure your jawbone can support the implant. Some patients may require a sinus lift or bone graft before receiving an implant.
Pedro will take radiographs and scans of your mouth to get a better understanding of your specific case and plan your treatment accordingly. If you are a candidate for implants, you will be made fully aware of both the advantages and disadvantages to enable you to make an informed decision.
Once you have undergone your initial consultation and agreed upon a treatment plan, you can look forward to the three phases of a successful implant.
The titanium rod is implanted into the jaw. The gum then covers the implant for three to six months while it fuses with the bone. Pedro can fit a temporary denture to wear during this period if you wish. For two weeks after, a soft-food diet must be followed to avoid dislodging the implant.
Once the titanium has successfully fused with your jaw, the next step is to add a healing cap. This might mean a slight adjustment to your temporary denture, which is a quick and easy procedure.
About three weeks after the healing cap has been placed, the dental crown is added. The crown will be made to match your natural teeth and be fitted onto the healing cap.
Follow-up appointments may be necessary after the fitting to make sure the crown is as comfortable as possible. This could include adjustments to the shape, size, colour, or fit.
The total treatment time for all four phases is generally five to eight months.
There are many causes of tooth loss. It doesn’t simply boil down to gum disease or poor oral health. Many individuals with perfectly healthy mouths lose one or more teeth, perhaps from a car accident, a nasty fall, or a contact sports injury. Regardless of how a tooth has been lost, everyone deserves the chance to restore their beautiful smile, and a dental implant is a great option to consider.
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With over 15-years experience and a strong commitment to excellence, Pedro provides top-quality dental care with special attention to detail so that you can enjoy a healthy and beautiful smile.
His practice revolves around cosmetic and restorative dentistry including smile makeovers, cosmetic braces, Invisalign, dental implants, porcelain crowns & veneers, composite bondings, teeth whitening and more.
Pedro is enthusiastic and dedicated to providing a personalized and professional service. He will treat you like a family member. You will be in very good hands.