Many Americans have one or more missing teeth, but there are tooth-replacement options that can help give you back a beautiful smile. Dental implants have been around for a while, but they are getting more and more popular. If you would like to know more, check out these four benefits of dental implants.
1. They Prevent Shifting Teeth
It's important to replace missing teeth to prevent teeth from shifting. Once you lose a tooth, the surrounding teeth slowly move to fill in that gap. Eventually, this can make it hard to replace the tooth. Plus, if your teeth shift too much, it can affect your bite.
This misaligned bite can also cause some teeth to wear down faster than others because there is uneven wear and tear. If teeth hit improperly, it may also increase the risk of chipping, speech impediments, gum disease, and TMJ.
2. They Are Durable
Dental implants are a durable option to replace missing teeth. This is because the titanium root used in an implant can fuse to your jawbone. This hold is so strong that with proper care, your dental implant may last the rest of your life. You may need to replace the crown occasionally. The crown is the portion of the implant that mimics the visible part of the tooth.
If your gums are not healthy, however, it can lead to a special condition known as peri-implantitis. This type of gum disease attacks the gum tissue around the implant. If left untreated, it can start to cause gum recession, which will reveal the titanium root. This greatly increases the risk of implant failure.
3. They Don't Rely on Other Teeth
A dental bridge is a common alternative to dental implants. They are much more affordable than implants, but they aren't as durable. This is because a dental bridge doesn't use the jawbone for support; it uses healthy teeth.
Typically, with good care and good oral hygiene, your dental bridge shouldn't put too much strain on the healthy teeth, but the process to place the bridge requires those healthy teeth to be permanently altered. Some enamel must be removed to fit the bridge.
4. They Keep Your Jawbone Strong
Because dental implants can fuse to the jawbone, they also help keep your jawbone strong. When you lose teeth, your jawbone loses a lot of stimulation in that area. Just like a muscle you stop using, the unstimulated jawbone starts to shrink.
If you have one or two missing teeth, you shouldn't worry too much, but if you are missing a lot of teeth, your jawbone could shrink so much that it can no longer support healthy teeth. This leads to loose teeth and tooth loss.
Having missing teeth is a common struggle for many Americans. However, dental implants can give you back the smile you love. If you would like to know more, contact a provider in your area today.