Dental implants are a lifelike ceramic crown with a titanium root which is implanted directly to your jawbone to create a durable and realistic “tooth”.
However, although the price of dental implants has come down dramatically in recent years, they are still very expensive (you could certainly be looking to pay over £1000 per tooth), the process can take many months and not everyone wants to go through surgery just to have a gap free smile.
So what are the advantages of dental implants?
– Because of the materials involved, Dental implants are extremely durable. Using space age ceramics and titanium, the “tooth” itself is extremely strong and will last a very long time. The main limitation is the strength of the bond with the jawbone itself, which can begin to loosen after around ten years, although technology to expand this timespan is coming on in leaps and bounds.
– Alternatives to dental implants include removable bridges (to replace one or two teeth) and dentures (to replace the whole arch of teeth). In the case of a removable bridge, this acts like a mini denture, anchored on the two adjoining teeth. However, like full dentures, these have to be regularly removed and cleaned independently of the rest of the mouth, whereas implants can be brushed along with your normal teeth. They will not fall out while exercising, eating or participating in sport – fact, everything about dental implants is designed to make it feel no different than a normal, natural tooth. Also, when replacing a full arch, this can be carried out securely using just 4 implant “roots”, dramatically reducing the cost, invasiveness and time needed for the procedure.
– While the bridge mentioned above requires there to be two healthy teeth directly to each side of the missing tooth, conventional crowns require the remains of a tooth and root to create a “post” to which they can be affixed, and veneers also require the old tooth to be present, a dental implant can be placed almost anywhere in the mouth. With new angled and tapered titanium roots, previous restrictions on suitable oral environments have been largely eliminated. Even where there is poor bone density in the jaw, due to the tooth having been missing for many years, modern bone grafting techniques mean the dentist can fully restore the strength of the jaw in a matter of months or even weeks, allowing an implant to be securely placed.
Dental implants are a true fusion of engineering and medicine, which has been revolutionising both dental technology and patients’ lives for years. If a missing tooth is causing you to hide your smile or feel self-conscious whilst eating, drinking or speaking, it is well worth talking to your dentists who may be able to refer you to a good Implantologist in your area and if you’re based in Glasgow, then Michael Kelly Dentistry are able to quicker healing dental implants with less pain.