Whether caused by a car accident, gum disease or any other tooth-damaging injury, tooth implants are more than just a cosmetic addition. Often they are a necessity to achieve the result of a happy patient with a completely workable set of teeth. Removable dentures and removable individual false teeth are simply not the absolute best solution. Tooth implants are so helpful because they will probably begin to feel like normal teeth to the patient not long after having them inserted.
Dental implants are not, as often supposed, the actual replacement teeth. Tooth implants are false tooth roots screwed into the jaw to hold a replacement tooth or bridge. They are made to look and feel natural, replacing both the root and the original tooth. Perio.org says that with the right conditions, tooth implants can last a lifetime.
The Consumer Guide to Dentistry says that tooth implants for single teeth can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000. A person looking to get tooth implants should consider several factors, including the amount of dental insurance he has, if his insurance will cover the procedure, the location of the procedure and the type of implantation, to name a few.
A small hole is usually drilled into the jawbone first, according to The Consumer Guide to Dentistry, to allow easier insertion and guidance for the actual screw. It is gently widened and the implant screw is inserted, covered by another protective screw so it can heal properly and fuse with the jawbone.
The World Center for Dental Implantology says most tooth implants are made of titanium because it fuses so well with the bone. Crowns are generally formed out of porcelain or acrylic resin.
According to perio.org, once the screw is inserted into the jawbone, it is allowed to bond with the jaw for two to six months. The jawbone begins to grow and fill in the small gaps made by the screw, holding it even tighter and supporting it better. Some people wear temporary tooth replacements during this time. This also allows the gums to heal. Sometimes, an additional step is required to attach an extension to the implant so a replacement tooth can more easily be attached.
After several months, the protective screw is removed and a temporary crown, or false tooth, is created for the space. It is then attached to the screw so the gums can develop and grow around the tooth to look natural, according to The Consumer Guide to Dentistry. Once this happens, the temporary crown is replaced by a permanent one, and the process is complete.
Tooth implants can be the solution to a really uncomfortable problem. When your teeth start to fail and you have to find some sort of replacement, tooth implants will be the best option if you can afford them, or if your insurance will cover them. Although most dental plans will consider it cosmetic, and therefore are not covered on insurance, you can sometimes find a way to get the procedure discounted or schedule a payment plan for the procedure. As you continue to research, weigh and consider your options for tooth implants.