Four Benefits of Dental Implants

Dental implants offer one of the most important advances in the replacement of a missing tooth: replacement of the whole tooth.  Implants are the only tooth replacement that replace the root, providing an anchor into the jawbone.  This is what gives them such great advantages over other tooth replacement options.

Most Cosmetic Option

There are two reasons that a dental implant achieves the best cosmetic results in replacing a missing tooth:

  1. No connection to neighboring teeth

The dental implant attaches directly to and receives its support from the jawbone.  Because other tooth replacement options, like partials and bridges, do not anchor into the bone, they require the support of neighboring teeth.  Being connected to adjacent teeth makes any “fake tooth” look just that: fake!

  1. No gap between replacement tooth and gums

When a tooth is missing, over time, the jawbone and gums shrink in that area.  A dental implant acts like a tooth and stimulates the health of the bone and gums.  Bridges and partials simply rest on top of the gums and lack the maintenance effect of a tooth or an implant.  For this reason, one cosmetic problem that can develop with bridges and partials over time is a gap or air space between the replacement tooth and the gums.  Sometimes the replacement tooth can even appear to be “floating”.  This is not a good look for smiles.

Best Chewing Function

The anchorage into the jawbone is also the reason dental implants provide superior chewing force than other replacement options.  A natural tooth has a limit to how much force it can provide to the chewing process, and that force comes from the length and configuration of its root.  When you connect a fake tooth to a natural one, the chewing force does not increase because you are not changing the root.

A dental implant is the only option that replaces the root, and therefore restores the chewing force of the missing tooth.

Easiest to Clean

Because a dental implant mimics the natural anatomy of a tooth, it is the tooth replacement option that is easiest to clean.  Many people mistakenly assume that “fake” teeth do not need diligent cleaning, and nothing could be further from the truth.  The teeth that hold partials and bridges are actually at a higher risk for cavities and gum disease than teeth that do not.

While dental implants cannot get cavities, they can suffer from gum disease.  In worst-case scenarios, gum disease destroys the gum and bone attachment to an implant, and the implant fails.  Cleaning every tooth in your mouth, both natural and replacements, is vital to fighting dental disease!

Because a dental implant is a freestanding tooth replacement, you can brush and floss it in the same way you would clean your natural tooth.  No special tools or techniques are necessary to keep your dental implant clean and healthy!

No Negative Impact on Other Teeth

The support required by neighboring teeth to replace a missing tooth with bridges or partials places significant strain on those teeth.  They are at a higher risk for cavities and gum disease, as noted above.  They are also at a higher risk for cracking and breaking under too much chewing force.

In addition to the strain of supporting a missing tooth, bridges in particular cause significant damage to the neighboring teeth by design.  The adjacent teeth require preparation, like that for a crown, in order to hold the bridge itself.  This preparation removes all of the enamel from the tooth.  This is not as much of a concern for teeth that have large fillings or crowns in place already.  It is a big concern for healthy teeth with intact enamel.

Again, the stand-alone nature of a dental implant causes no negative impact on the neighboring teeth.  In fact, it actually has a positive impact by stimulating the health of the jawbone and gums, which would recede without it.

More Questions about Dental Implants?

If you are interested in dental implants in Denton, call 940-382-1750 today to schedule an implant consultation with Dr. Chowning.  He will answer any question you have and get you on your way to a beautiful and functional tooth replacement.

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