Frequently Asked Questions About Dental Implants

If you have lost teeth, you're obviously feeling self-conscious to talk confidently or smile. You can develop poor eating habits, and food can become difficult to chew, leading to health problems. If you aren't sure if dental implants are the right solution for you, here are some answers to some frequently asked questions.

What Are Dental Implants?

A dental implant is inserted in the place of a missing tooth. It's a metal post that the dentist places in your jawbone. The implant serves as a support for an artificial tooth, also known as a crown. The dentist will choose a crown after taking impressions of your mouth. An abutment links the artificial tooth to the implant. The crown feels and works the same way as a natural tooth.

What Are Some Types of Dental Implants?

According to the American Dental Association, the two safest types of implants are subperiosteal and endosteal implants. Subperiosteal implants have metal frames fitted onto the jawbone below the gum tissue. While the gum heals, the frames form a solid bond to the jawbone. There are posts attached to the metal frame. The crowns are then fixed to these posts. 

Endosteal implants are placed into your jawbone through surgery. When the surrounding tissue heals, a second surgery will be performed to connect a post to your implant. Finally, the crowns are fixed to the post.

The difference between these dental implant treatments is that with endosteal implants, you need sufficient bone to hold the implant, while subperiosteal implants can work for patients with a narrow or worn-out jawbone.

Who Can Get Dental Implants?

These implants act as the roots of your missing teeth. Since the titanium in the implant bonds with your jawbone, you'll not experience any bone damage as you would find with dentures and fixed bridgework. Furthermore, the materials don't decay like natural teeth.

Dental implants are ideal for you if you have one or several missing teeth. You're also a good candidate if you have sufficient bone to hold the implants or can go through a bone graft procedure. If you're uncomfortable with dentures, want to improve speech, and are willing to dedicate a few months to the process, then dental implants are right for you.

The dental implants' success rate will vary depending on which part of the jaw the implants are placed in. In most cases, dental implants have shown a high success rate. To ensure your implants last long, observe oral hygiene and avoid damaging habits such as smoking, drinking caffeine, or eating hard-to-chew foods. For more information about dental implants, contact a dentist.