It's a sad day when you lose a tooth. Your gums and jaw start to deteriorate. Your appearance suffers as does oral function--biting, chewing, and speaking. Remaining teeth migrate toward the gap. What's your best tooth replacement? If you qualify, dental implants from your Santa Monica, CA, dentists - Dr. Mani Morshed, Dr. Noushin Morshed, and Dr. Bobak Morshed - are superior artificial teeth which can restore your smile and your self-confidence.
The single-tooth implant
It's composed of a titanium metal root (placed directly into the jaw), a metal alloy extension post, and a realistic porcelain crown. The titanium implant inserts into the jaw bone during a brief oral surgery procedure. Given adequate time to heal, the implant then receives an extension post and crown. The new tooth is strong and feels lifelike and completely functional to the patient.
Best of all, a dental implant improves the density and integrity of the bone and gum tissue. Other tooth replacements, such as traditional fixed bridges, cannot do that because they just rest on top of the gums.
How do implants strengthen the jaw bone? They do it by what scientists call osseointegration. When a titanium implant enters the jaw bone, the bone immediately begins to bond to it. Osseointegration is unique to titanium, making it the best choice for dental implants, says the American Academy of Implant Dentistry.
Additionally, your Santa Monica dentist can provide full and partial dentures which are supported by one or more dental implants. These prosthetics offer superior appearance and oral function and are wonderful choices for people with extensive tooth loss.
Qualifying for dental implants
A comprehensive oral examination, including digital X-rays, tells your dentist if you can receive dental implants. A healthy, strong jaw bone is paramount. However, if you lack sufficient bone, the doctor may be able to augment it with donor bone or other materials to provide sufficient anchorage.
Maintaining dental implants
Implants can last 40 to 50 years--in other words, a lifetime for most patients. Caveats for longevity include:
- Diligent home brushing and flossing to remove plaque and avoid tartar accumulation
- Semi-annual examinations and hygienic cleanings at Morshed Dentistry
- No smoking
While patients who smoke may qualify for these innovative procedures, tobacco usage places undue stress on implant sites. In particular, the toxins in cigarette smoke atrophy and infect the gums and bone around implants (just as they do natural teeth). This condition is called peri-implantitis, and it may cause implant failure and subsequent removal.
If you have lost one or more teeth, please contact Morshed Dentistry in Santa Monica, CA, to talk with one of our experts about dental implants. Call (310) 393-9664.