Everyone wants to see that perfect set of pearly white teeth staring back at them when they look at their reflection in the mirror. A lucky few are born with such healthy and hearty teeth, but many have to spend a lot of time, money, effort and patience towards achieving this goal. Although tooth loss is a surprisingly common problem and is sure to occur in most people’s lives at least once, due to a severe cavity or maybe a failed root canal, its significance can lead to multiple negative effects if left untreated.
When teeth are lost, the bone in the jaw begins to dissolve since its use as an anchor dissipates. And this is where dental implants can clearly make their mark. And unlike dentures or bridgework, they won’t slip, or cause bone damage. Let’s set you on the right path of which dental implants are spot-on for you and how do you best care for them once they are safely fixed in your mouth.
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants can be traced all the way back to 600AD when pieces of shell were intrinsically used to replace missing teeth. 2500 years later, titanium alloys have replaced sea-shells and the technological advances have allowed for present-day implants to act as artificial roots, even helping to bond with our natural bone. Take note, you don’t have to be hitting 70 and missing all your teeth in order to invest in implants which are able to provide solid support to your teeth.
Whether you were born without one particular tooth or lost several in an accident or maybe numerous have fallen out due to infection and decay, everyone has a right to look and feel great and a winning smile is one of the best ways to do so. So once you’ve made the decision to go forward, a visit to the orthodontist should point you in the right direction as to which dental implant is best for you.
Four Different Kinds of Dental Implants
If you have a good, healthy jawbone, chances are your orthodontist will suggest Endosteal implants for you. Suited for most patients, these are typically made of titanium and are shaped like small screws. They are carefully attached right into your jawbone as placeholders and given a good quality of time to heal before the false teeth can be placed onto the post and secured by the surrounding teeth.
Consult with our dental specialist to choose artificial teeth that are removable, fixed or a combination of both. The initial drilling part of the procedure may have you a little scared but rest assured this procedure has been deemed safe by all dental research institutions.
If Endosteal implants are not your cup of tea, let’s move right ahead to their main alternative, Subperiosteal implants. These little beauties are made out of metal framework and attached under your gum tissue but above your jawbone. Protruding from it are little metal attachment posts on which a bridge or crowns can be carefully placed.
The entire procedure is a two-part surgery of which in the first, the gums are opened to make a bone impression of the required frame. During the second part, the surgeon will cut the gums to insert the metal framework over the jawbone and stitch them closed once completed. Only after an ample amount of healing time will the bridge or crowns be placed on the metal frame.
This option proves to be quite useful for those people who have been told they are not suitable for ordinary implants. If you are experiencing substantial bone loss in the upper jaw, it makes it highly improbable for regular implants to find the necessary support for the required bridgework.
In this scenario, patients will likely be recommended invasive grafting procedures to establish adequate bone volume in order to proceed with dental implants. But Zygomatics will have none of this. Using minimally invasive surgery, Zygomatics, which are longer than regular implants, engage the strong bulk of bone that forms the cheekbone instead of the upper jawbone.
3D Imaging and Treatment Planning
With technology improving as fast it is, dentists are getting on board as well. Now state-of-the-art highly precise 3D digital imaging and implant surgical planning software can help accurately analyze the anatomy of a jaw and pinpoint the exact location for implants to be inserted.
At our dental clinic in Dubai, our expert orthodontists are able to use this technology to complete surgery in three simple and efficient steps. First a CT Scan image is taken which provides accurate bone measurements. Then these images are reconstructed into a 3D model allowing the doctor to see virtual implants. Lastly, the computer model is used to construct a surgical guide which is then transplanted into the patient’s mouth during surgery.
After Care For Your Dental Implants
Immediately after the insertion of your dental implants, pain medications are provided as a precautionary measure. Cold liquids are recommended as preferred accompaniments to soft foods. Brush as usual but avoid the newly operated side, at least for a week. Don’t fret too much if a little bleeding occurs. This is common in most cases for up to 48-72 hours post surgery, however if active bleeding continues you will need to report to a health professional immediately.
Swelling often occurs as part of the healing process especially if it was after an extensive surgery. Apply an ice pack over the affected areas every so often to help reduce puffiness. After a couple of days, you can exchange the ice pack for a warm compress to the cheek, which will help soothe any remaining soreness. A moderate degree of discomfort is sure to follow even a few weeks after the surgery, but you are sure to let it slide once you see your reflection, complete with its gleaming set of teeth.
Of course we understand that prevention is the best method when it comes to tooth loss but in most cases it is inevitable, and several gaps in your smile can not only appear unappealing but also eventually lead to further dental problems. Considered the standard care for prosthetic replacement of missing teeth and mimicking the role of natural teeth, dental implants exist for the sole purpose of replacing one or several of them.
Added bonus, well-placed and well-cared for dental implants have the potential to last you forever. From damaged tooth removal to jawbone grafting and dental implant placement to artificial tooth placement, the entire process may take some time and should if done properly, but the lasting effect will have you brightly grinning from ear to ear once again. All you have to do is care for them like you would your natural teeth including getting regular dental cleanings and check-ups and you will be able to enjoy a healthy lasting smile every time you open your mouth. If you are considering dental implants as an option, expert orthodontists are on-site at our dental Dental and will ensure that patients receive the utmost care starting from the consultation all the way to post-care.