Nothing can take the place of a healthy set of teeth, but when disease or an accident ends in tooth loss, it's good to know there are options for restoring your smile. If you are self-conscious because you have missing teeth or you wear dentures, there is an alternative: dental implants.
Implants have been used for more then a quarter century. More patients are choosing dental implants as a replacement option, according to the American Dental Association. Many patients choose implants to replace a single tooth, several teeth, or to support a full set of dentures. Implants are cylinders that are surgically placed in the upper or lower jaw where they function as a sturdy anchor for replacement teeth. They are made of materials that are compatible with the human body.
Who is a Canidate?
If you are in good general health, with healthy gums and a jawbone that can support an implant, this treatment may be an option for you. In fact, your health is more of a factor than your age. Chronic illnesses, such as diabetes or leukemia, may interfere with healing after surgery. If you use tobacco, you are at a greater risk for gum disease, which can weaken the bone and tissues needed to support the implant.
Meticulous oral hygiene is critical to the success of the implant. You'll need to spend a little more time caring for the implant and making sure the area surrounding it is particularly clean. If your overall health is good and your teeth and gums are in good shape, your dentist can determine if you are a suitable candidate for a dental implant.