Missing teeth can interfere with more than just chewing your food. Self-confidence can decrease, making social situations harder to handle. Bone loss eventually occurs, causing facial muscles to sag. Sometimes, dentures or bridges just do not do the trick. This is where dental implants come into play. A permanent solution to an age-old problem, dental implants replace not just your missing tooth, but its root as well.
What are dental implants?
Dental implants replace a missing tooth’s root. Instead of sitting on top of the gum line, like a bridge or denture, implants integrate into the bone. This integration process can take several months, and provides a stable, permanent foundation for your new tooth. Implants are used to replace one or many teeth. Dental implants feel, look and function exactly like a natural tooth.
The Parts of a Dental Implant
Before you can understand exactly how a dental implant does its job, you must first understand the different parts of the implant itself.
- Implant Fixture: The fixture is a post that replaces a missing tooth’s root. Surgically implanted into the bone below the gum tissue, the implant permanently secures your new tooth to your jaw’s bone. This ensures that the tooth stays where it should and functions normally.
- Implant Abutment: The abutment sits on top of the gum line. It connects the implanted fixture to your new dental crown.
- Dental Crown: Dental crowns are created in a dental laboratory by a lab technician. The size, shape and color of the crown are taken into consideration, ensuring your new tooth looks and feels as natural as possible.
Am I a candidate for dental implants?
Not everyone makes the ideal candidate for dental implant surgery. There must be enough jaw bone for the implant to attach itself to. Dental implants may not be a good option for patients with significant bone loss or who have deteriorating health. Excellent at-home care is required to ensure your implants last you a lifetime. Brush and floss twice daily, and be sure to see your dentist twice a year for cleanings and examinations.
For more information on dental implants in New Haven, CT, please contact Dr. Frank Maratta, DMD. Call 203-773-1701 to schedule your consultation for dental implants today!