Preventing Bone Loss
Your jaw relies on having strong, healthy teeth to allow you to chew and speak properly. When even a single tooth is missing, the jaw bone can start to shrink, causing other complications for your oral and overall health. This may also increase your risk of being diagnosed with gum disease.
Fortunately, an implant can be used to address this problem. A small titanium screw will be surgically placed in the jaw bone to replace the missing tooth or teeth. The implant is designed to function like a natural tooth root and prevent surrounding teeth from shifting. It can also resolve jaw joint pain and keep facial tissues from sagging.
The Importance of a Healthy Bite
Not only does a dental implant improve the look of your smile but replacing missing teeth can also contribute to your overall health. Dental implants can help you continue to enjoy a wide variety of healthy foods and maintain your facial structure.
The Dental Implant Process
A dental implant is comprised of two primary components, including a tiny titanium screw that's implanted in the jaw to replace a missing tooth root and a dental crown. The crown is attached to the implant to replace the visible part of a natural tooth.
To start, your dentist will surgically place the implant into your jaw bone beneath the gum tissue. The implant will bond with the bone and attach to the gums as the tissue heals.
Once healing is complete following surgery, patients will then return to our office to have the procedure completed with a dental crown or bridge.
During this final appointment, your dentist will attach a tooth replacement to the implant to create the look and function of a natural tooth.
Dental Implant FAQs
Read the answers to our most frequently asked questions about dental implants at Falls Family Dental.
How long does a dental implant last?
If you care for your implant properly, it can last a lifetime. This includes proper brushing and flossing at home, as well as attending regular hygiene cleanings and exams at your dental office.
The longevity of a dental implant may also depend on other factors including nutrition, genetics, or the development of any dental diseases.
How do I care for my dental implants?
You should care for a dental implant just like you care for your natural teeth.
Visiting your dentist for regular hygiene appointments and maintaining a proper brushing and flossing routine at home can help prevent decay or diseases from developing in the surrounding teeth and gums, which can negatively affect your dental implants.
Does getting a dental implant hurt?
During dental implant surgery, your dentist will administer anesthesia to make you comfortable so you won't feel pain during the procedure.
Following the procedure, there is not usually much discomfort. Most patients can manage any pain with an over-the-counter pain medication for a few days after the procedure.
You will also need to eat a soft diet for the first couple of weeks after the implant procedure to avoid pain or irritation.
How long does the dental implant process take?
The entire dental implant process usually takes about two to nine months to complete, depending on your treatment plan.
Your dentist can provide you with a more specific timeline based on your particular case.
Will my insurance cover dental implants?
Some insurances companies will cover the cost of dental implants, while some will only pay for a portion of the cost, and others won't pay for any part of it.
To determine what part, if any, of your dental implant treatment will be covered by your insurance, check with your insurance provider.