What are dental implants?
Dental implants are used for replacing missing teeth, and are essentially a false tooth. You may have only one missing tooth, or several, and you can have as many implants fitted as necessary to achieve the look that you desire.
Why might I need a dental implant?
People choose to have dental implants for a variety of reasons – the most common is to replace teeth that need to be extracted due to decay or damage. Removal of damaged teeth is often essential for your dental and overall health, but implants can give you back your natural smile without compromising your health. If you have suffered an accident that damaged one or more of your teeth you may want a dental implant – even if you have not lost a whole tooth but cracked or chipped a large portion of a tooth you may still need a dental implant depending on the damage to the nerves and the overall health of the tooth. Gaps in the teeth can look very unsightly and tend to be very noticeable if they are at the front of the mouth, when smiling and talking. You may find that missing teeth cause your lips or cheeks to sink slightly, and dental implants can correct this. Feeling self conscious goes hand in hand with missing teeth or poor dental health, and implants can help you to get your confidence back again!
Who can have a dental implant?
Anyone over the age of 19. This is because until that age, the face is still developing; for an implant to be successful it is advisable to wait until growth and development has finished and settled down before an implant is inserted, to avoid any unwanted changes after insertion. There is no upper age limit for implants.
What are they made of?
Dental implants are made from porcelain which is coloured to the natural shade of your own teeth. This makes them very similar to natural teeth in appearance, feel and function – meaning that they blend in remarkably well with your existing teeth. Each implant has a titanium post at the top, which is used to connect the tooth to your existing bone with a small screw. This makes them very secure, and ensures that they do not come loose or become uncomfortable, as can often happen with dentures.
Will it look natural?
Yes, the porcelain that dental implants are made of looks identical to natural teeth – your dentist should also have a number of consultations with you during the process to ensure that the correct colour and fit are achieved, in order to restore your natural smile.
What do I do next?
You will need to find a qualified dentist who can offer dental implants, and then pay a visit for a consultation. If you are not sure where to find this service, try looking online for a dentist near you who specialises in this kind of treatment. An initial consultation is necessary to gauge the amount of treatment that will be needed, and you can get all the information you need to go ahead feeling confident.