The Benefits and the Risks of Dental Implants

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There are several factors that go into deciding whether to get dental implants. Among the things to take into consideration when deciding on which kind of tooth replacement is best for you are the healing time, price, and durability. Before we delve into why dental implants are the best tooth replacement option, let’s talk about what exactly dental implants are in the first place. 

Dental implants are comprised of three parts. The actual implant is a small, titanium screw that replaces the root of a tooth and fuses with your jawbone through a process called “osseointegration.”  

A healing abutment is then placed, which is a small titanium stud that fits over the portion of the implant protruding over the gum line and acts as an anchor for the custom-made crown, which is the third and final part of the dental implant.  

The patient comes back approximately three months after having the implant placed for a final check before going to see the restorative dentist to have their crown placed. 

Anatomy of Dental Implants: 

Benefits of Dental Implants: 

  • Preserves facial structures 
  • Strong (or stronger) than natural teeth 
  • Prevents bone deterioration by preserving the tooth-supporting bone structure 
  • Act/look/feel like natural teeth 
  • Increases confidence 
  • Enjoy virtually any food you want 
  • Can last a lifetime 
  • Don’t decay 
  • Don’t make any embarrassing noises like removable dentures do 

Risks of Not Getting Dental Implants: 

  • Bone deterioration and loss of teeth adjacent to already missing ones 
  • Decreased confidence 
  • Deterioration of facial contours due to tooth loss – without the stimulation that teeth provide, the alveolar (what?) bone begins to resorb- a medical term meaning “melt away.” The bones in the jaw support your cheeks, lips, and chin, and as bone disappears, cheeks begin to sink in and lips lose their support, which exaggerates the appearance of aging 
  • Bone loss can lead to problems with the gums, the bite, and other health and nutritional issues caused by the inability to chew properly 

Below are some before/after pictures patients who underwent dental implant surgery. 

Surgery is required to place dental implants; therefore it is best done by a trained surgeon. An Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon (OMS) has the specialized training and education in the bone, skin, muscles, and nerves involved in dental implant surgery to get the best results and greatest implant success rate. When placed by an OMS, the overall success rate of dental implants is 95 percent. Our oral surgeons placed over 1,000 dental implants and has a success rate of 98 percent.