Filling the Gaps with Implants
Missing teeth affect both your appearance and confidence, but can be filled in with dental implants. Worse still, any gaps left by missing teeth can cause great strain on the rest of the mouth and jaw. Having a gap between your teeth can also affect the bite. The teeth surrounding the space can lean and alter the way in which the top and bottom set bite together. Unfilled teeth will cause decay and gum disease and oral health will suffer.
There are a number of treatments and solutions available for those ready to replace missing teeth and fill gaps, including bridges, dental implants and dentures.
Bridgework is the conventional method of replacing missing teeth. Professionals use this precious metal-based material to replace a few missing, or sideways teeth.
Dentures are removable replacements for missing teeth. They appear and function like regular teeth and gum tissues. Partial dentures contain small chrome clasps which work to surround the teeth and hold the denture in place securely. This also allows them to feel weightless and give more of a minimal feel in the mouth.
For patients who have several missing teeth with substantial gaps left over from a period of time, dentures are usually the most appropriate option. They can provide maximum support for the cheeks and improve overall facial appearance.
One of the most common solutions to improve long-term oral health is dental implants. Dental implants are a well-established substitute for a natural tooth root and give a more permanent solution to missing teeth. They resemble a cylinder-shaped screw, which is inserted into the jaw bone and drilled where the original tooth once was or should have been.
Permanent teeth are normally fitted six to nine months after the implants are inserted. It’s advised to give them time to bond with the bone. Sometimes implants are already stable enough for the artificial teeth to be attached sooner. The condition of the bone in a patient’s jaw will determine whether or not implants will be used. If the bone is in poor condition or isn’t substantial enough, it may be necessary to graft bone into the area first.
Dental implants are long-lasting, and much like natural teeth will maintain their appearance and functionality as long as they are taking care of to a high standard. To ensure their sustainability, the patient should take great care of implants and regularly schedule maintenance appointments.
If implants aren’t taken care of, plaque will begin to form, as it would on neglected regular teeth. Like natural teeth, untreated implants can lead to gum infection, bleeding, soreness and general pain.
If the bone they are fitted to is strong and healthy, implants can last for many years. However, just like other surgical implants, there is no lifetime guarantee.
Also read – Dental implants