Getting the Most out of Your Dental Implants

A smiling senior woman admiring her new dental implants Dental implants are a modern, permanent way of replacing missing natural teeth. Smile Design Dental in Buckinghamshire has carried out a large number of successful dental implant treatments, giving patients back the appearance and function of natural teeth.

The commonest way to replace lost teeth is still with dentures. Although modern dentures are an unfathomable improvement on their early ancestors, nevertheless the majority of people who wear them report problems with their fit, often necessitating returning to the dentist to have them adjusted or even remade.

The reason behind this may come as a surprise to many, for it is not the actual denture itself that changes shape, but the jaw bone. When natural teeth have been missing for any considerable period of time, the jaw bone starts to resorb or shrink because there are no longer tooth roots providing stimulation when we bite or chew food.

Because dental implants are artificial tooth roots, and because they are made from titanium which is highly compatible with the human body, they help to prevent this. Dental implants are placed directly in the jaw bone using local anaesthetic or sedation, and once they have integrated adequately with the bone, new teeth are attached on top.

As well as being a means of stabilising dentures, dental implants can also be used with a fixed bridge or a crown to replace one or a few teeth. They are designed to be a permanent tooth substitute, and can last for many years – a lifetime, in some cases – with good aftercare and regular visits to both the dentist and the hygienist.

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To be considered for treatment with dental implants, a thorough examination and assessment is required. For example, if you have an underlying condition such as gum disease this will have to be treated first, whilst if you have already experienced a degree of bone loss you may need an additional procedure to rebuild jaw bone density before you can have your implants fitted.

Once your implants have been restored with a crown, bridge, or denture, you will need to keep regular follow-up appointments with the dentist and dental hygienist to avoid any further oral health problems.