Losing one or more teeth can do much more than ruin a beautiful smile; it can lead to bone loss, shifting of teeth, bite and jaw problems, and the appearance of wrinkles in areas such as the corners of the mouth. Because of great advances in implant technology, we often wish to fill gaps, restore a functional bite and prevent bone loss through implants. In this post, we discuss ways to address existing gaps and highlight important considerations when opting for implants.
What are All the Options for Missing Teeth?
There are many considerations that your dentist will take into account when giving advice on how to fill gaps. One is the state of your oral health. Issues such as gum disease and bone loss will prevent implants from lasting long-term so treating these issues is vital prior to the procedure.
The size of the gap is also relevant; if only one tooth is missing, your dentist might suggest a bridge or denture; if the gap is very small, they might even suggest leaving it alone.
Your general state of health will also affect your treatment plan. Some people who have heart disease or smoke may not be good candidates for surgery; it is important to understand that in cases where there is insufficient bone, prior implantation may be necessary. Meanwhile, habits such as smoking can adversely affect wound healing and are linked to a higher chance of implant failure.
It is important to follow the advice of your dentist since they look for solutions from a functional as well as an aesthetic perspective. As noted by Dr. Carl Metz DDS, one of the main aims of implantation is to help people regain the ability to eat and smile with confidence. This Mesa Dentist notes that implant dentures are only one solution that can restore this and other functions.
What Considerations are Important in Making a Decision?
Implants can take around three months between surgery and placement of the final crown so it is important to factor in this time period. Rather than rush your dentist, you should give your mouth the time it needs to heal, to ensure the long-term success of your implant.
The quality of implants is also key; rather than opting for the cheapest price, you should be looking at well-known implants which are used across the USA (and even the globe), in case you should need a change or update years later, and are living in a new state or country.
Finally, maintenance is key for implants to last long-term. Therefore, regular visits to your dentist to ensure everything is ordered, are key.
We can be surprised when we talk to our dentist and discover options we may not have considered for missing teeth. Before proceeding to have implant surgery, issues such as oral hygiene and general health needs to be taken into account. Finally, care and maintenance of crowns are key, to ensure you have a perfect smile for a lifetime.