Missing a tooth due to decay, injury, or disease can make you feel self-conscious about your appearance when you smile, laugh, or speak. It can also affect the way you use your mouth, interfering with normal chewing and eating.
A dental implant can resolve the cosmetic and functional issues caused by a missing tooth. This artificial tooth replacement is customized to look natural and stay secured in place. More than three million people in the United States have chosen implants for tooth replacement, with an additional 500,000 people choosing them every year.
Replacing a missing tooth helps maintain the health of your jawbone and facial structure. The roots of your teeth stimulate your jawbone and trigger your body to send nutrients to your jaw every time you chew. When you lose a tooth, you lose the stimulation in the gap in your gum line. Replacing a missing tooth with a dental implant restores the stimulation and prevents deterioration of the jawbone to keep your facial structure intact.
You’ll get the best results with a dental implant when you work with experienced specialists. The dentistry specialists at the seven locations of SEDA Dental in southern Florida have the expertise to restore your mouth to its natural appearance and abilities with dental implants. They specialize in providing dental implants that allow you to live your life confidently with an attractive and fully functioning smile.
How a dental implant works
A dental implant consists of three pieces that work together:
- A titanium rod screwed into your jawbone that serves as an artificial tooth root in the gap left by your missing tooth
- A crown, or artificial tooth, that provides the visible portion of the dental implant, customized to match your remaining natural teeth
- An abutment that connects the crown to the top portion of the titanium rod, or artificial tooth root, that extends above the gum line
Your dentist uses impressions of your mouth to create a crown that’s designed to fit snugly in the open gap. This ensures a comfortable fit without slipping. During the fitting process, your dentist matches the color of your crown to your remaining teeth so the dental implant blends in for a natural appearance.
What’s involved in getting a dental implant
Getting a dental implant typically involves a multi-step process. Depending on the condition of your mouth, you may require a tooth extraction or bone graft before insertion of the dental implant.
To keep you comfortable, the area is numbed and anesthesia may be used during the procedure. The dental implant process begins with an incision in your gum to expose your jawbone. Your dentist then drills small holes into the jawbone to allow for attachment of the artificial tooth root there. Stitches are used to close the incision.
It typically takes between three to six months for the artificial tooth root to fuse with your jawbone and gum tissue. You may receive a temporary crown to fill the gap so you can eat and speak normally until the fusion is complete.
When the titanium rod is sufficiently stable and secure, you return to the office so your dentist can attach the abutment to the top of the root. Your dental crown is attached to the abutment so that the finished dental implant matches your natural teeth.
Advantages of a dental implant
A dental implant provides an excellent option for restoring your natural smile and your ability to gain full function of your mouth. With a success rate of up to 98%, a dental implant can provide a lifetime of healthy smiles with proper care.
For many patients, a dental implant can offer several advantages when compared to other tooth replacement options. Because a dental implant is permanently secured in your mouth, it eliminates the need for daily removal and cleaning as is necessary with dentures. The customized fit of a dental implant also prevents slipping.
Getting a dental implant also allows you to replace a missing tooth while leaving the adjoining, natural teeth intact. This improves your chances of long-term oral health. Unlike dental bridges, which require grinding down the abutment teeth, a dental implant holds the artificial tooth root securely without affecting other teeth.
Don’t suffer from the embarrassment and discomfort of a missing tooth. Find out more about getting a dental implant and whether this procedure is the right solution for you. Call one of our convenient offices in Jupiter, Boynton Beach, Pompano Beach, Delray Beach, Boca Raton, or Pinecrest to schedule a consultation.