What are dental implants?
If you want to discover your options for new smiles at a dentist in Houston, you should consider your candidacy for dental implants. A dental implant is an ideal replacement for a missing tooth. Most teeth replacement options focus on the crown, i.e., the visible part of the tooth structure. However, a tooth has several components that aren’t visible, i.e., the entire root structure. And the root structure is extremely important because it supports your jawbone and prevents jawbone resorption by the body.
Dental implants are the ideal teeth replacement option because they replace the underlying root structures of the missing teeth, not just the visible components. A dental implant is a titanium screw drilled into the jawbone underneath the empty socket of the missing tooth. Titanium is an extremely biocompatible material that encourages bone growth. As such, when it’s drilled into the jawbone, your body initiates the osseointegration process — your jawbone tissues grow around the implant, making it a part of your dental anatomy.
As such, over time, dental implants become firmly rooted replacements for your natural teeth’ root structures. Once the implant is securely in place, the dentist attaches an abutment to the implant and a prosthetic to the abutment. The prosthetic is the visible part of the implant structure, and it can be a dental crown, bridge, or denture. Depending on the number of teeth you need to replace, the dentist will recommend an implant-supported crown, implant-supported bridge, or an implant-supported denture.
Dental implants provide the same appearance and functionality as natural teeth. As such, if you want new smiles and a second chance with your natural teeth, you should get dental implants.
What are my dental implant options?
Dental implants can replace individual teeth, multiple teeth in a row, or even a complete arch of missing teeth. As such, whether you’re missing 1, 5, or all your teeth, your dentist can discuss your specific treatment options. The following is an overview of your dental implant options.
Single Tooth Implants with Crowns
If you’re missing one tooth or multiple teeth from different positions, you’re the ideal candidate for single tooth implants. In this case, the dentist attaches one implant per missing tooth. Each implant supports a dental crown that’s designed to resemble your natural teeth. As such, if you’ve lost 3 teeth from different locations, you’ll need 3 implants and implant-supported dental crowns.
Implants for Multiple Teeth with Bridges
If you’re missing multiple teeth in a row, you’re the ideal candidate for multiple teeth implants with bridges. A dental bridge is a row of several prosthetic teeth supported on either side by crowns. As such, if you’re missing a row of 4 teeth, you can get two implants on either side of the row. The dentist attaches a dental bridge with two crowns to the implants, thereby replacing all your teeth. In this case, you only need 2 implants to replace 3, 4, or 5 missing teeth.
Implants for All Teeth with Dentures
If you’re missing all your teeth on the upper or lower arch, you can get a full-arch of dental implants. In this case, the dentist will attach dental implants to 4 strategically chosen locations in your jaw. Next, a full-arch denture will be attached to the 4 implants to replace all your teeth. This will provide the complete visual and functional replacement for natural teeth, but you’ll only need 4 implants instead of 16.
I lost my teeth years ago and know I’ve experienced some bone loss. What treatment options do you recommend for patients like me?
You can only get dental implants if you have sufficient jawbone structure under your missing tooth’s spot. Without enough jawbone, the implant won’t have any material to trigger osseointegration, thereby increasing the risk of implant failure. Unfortunately, you suffer jawbone disintegration soon after losing your tooth. If you wait several years before considering dental implants, you won’t have enough jawbone left over for dental implants.
If you lost your teeth years ago and have jawbone loss, you’ll need a preliminary treatment before dental implants. The dentist will select a bone grafting material and attach it to the sockets of your missing teeth. The bone grafting material will encourage your body to produce new jawbone tissues, which will take 6 to 9 months. Your body will gradually regenerate bone tissues and absorb the bone grafting material. Once you have healthy jawbone levels, you can get dental implants with bridges or dentures.
I want a stable tooth-replacement option that allows me to keep eating my favorite foods. What do you suggest for me?
Dental implants are the most stable and natural tooth-replacement option available. If you get dentures, you won’t be able to enjoy your favorite food because they might slide out of place or slip out. However, dental implants are firmly rooted parts of your dental anatomy — they don’t move, shake, slide, or slip out of place. As such, implant-supported dentures allow you to eat your favorite food.
One of my teeth is discolored and stands out from the rest. What are my options for making it fit in?
If your tooth is discolored, the dentist may recommend a dental veneer to cover it up. A dental veneer is a tooth-shaped and tooth-colored wafer of porcelain attached to the front face of your tooth. As such, veneers project the external impression of perfectly even and bright teeth. The color can be chosen according to the surrounding teeth to ensure they fit in.
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URBN Dental is one of the most reliable dental clinics for emergency dental care near me in Uptown and Midtown Houston, TX. Please schedule an appointment to discuss your dental services in Houston, TX.