If you've lost one or more teeth and you're considering dental implants you're going to have lots of questions. This is a decision about your body, you need to know if there are any risks involved, and what the benefits will be. .
These days, getting answers to questions about just about anything is pretty easy. A quick search on the internet will always deliver lots of information. Go to Wikipedia or any number of other sites and you'll find out all about the history of dentistry, and lots of facts about dental implants. Finding dental implant facts and figures easily doesn't always mean it's easy to apply the information directly to your personal situation.
Most people considering this procedure need to satisfy themselves about three vital issues:
- Are dental implants suitable for me?
- Can I afford them?
- And above all else... What impact will having implants make on my life?
Are dental implants suitable for me?
Almost certainly yes! The procedure may be more or less complicated depending on your circumstances. Any underlying gum disease must be treated before implants can be fitted. If you have a degree of bone loss in the jaw, a transplant may be required before the posts that will support the tooth can be fitted. The good news however is that the vast majority of people who've lost one or more teeth are suitable candidates for dental implants.
Can I afford dental implants?
Dental implants aren't inexpensive but it's worth remembering that they are a permanent replacement for your lost teeth. If you have dental insurance it's possible that some or all of the costs of your surgery may be covered. Some clinics offer financing that will allow you to spread the cost of your treatment.
What Impact will having implants make on my life?
While cosmetic benefits may be the first thing that springs to mind when considering implants they offer other benefits too:
You'll be able to enjoy a full range of food
Many denture users avoid crispy food, fruits with pips or other foods which are uncomfortable to eat with false teeth. Switching to implants eliminates all these problems. Implants don't just look like real teeth, they function like them too. With implants in place you'll also be able to chew properly, preparing food for trouble free digestion. Some implant users report less stomach problems as a result of this.
Implants can preserve the health of the jaw bone and other teeth.
Bone will regrow around the titanium post once it's inserted, and your implant is fixed into bone rather than relying on support from surrounding teeth. These two things combine together to make future dental problems less likely.
Oral discomfort is reduced
The procedures associated with the implant surgery may be uncomfortable but they shouldn't be painful. There will be some bruising and swelling after the process, as there would be with any surgery. Once the implant is settled and healing is complete dental implants are so comfortable that you'll forget they're there!
Your speech may become clearer
Gaps in teeth or poorly fitting dentures make it harder to pronounce certain sounds clearly. When you eliminate the gaps and replace lost teeth with prosthetic of the same size and shape you'll regain full clarity of speech.
You'll have a natural smile and feel more confident as a result
The social anxiety that missing teeth or bad dentures cause can't be overstated. Implants really do look and feel exactly like natural teeth and the boost to confidence they bring is the benefit that causes most patients who've had implants to say that they are worth the time and expense involved.