If you are looking for a long-term solution for tooth replacement then dental implants may be what you are looking for. They look and feel like natural teeth. If you take care of dental implants, they can last over twenty years but this largely depends on the patient and the patient’s lifestyle. It is advised that the patient maintain good oral hygiene in order for the implants to remain. Another main reason for the failure of dental implants is due to pre-existing medical conditions.
What Are They Made Of?
Dental implants are made of tough materials.
- Implant – this is the part that is surgically connected to the jawbone and replaces the root of the tooth
- Abutment – is the term for the piece that adheres to the implant and provides the foundation for the crown
- Crown – the false tooth. This attaches to the abutment and looks and feels like a real tooth.
Because the abutment and crown are above the surface of the gum it is more likely to be damaged than the actual implant from the activities of biting and chewing.
How Long Do Dental Implants Last?
For many patients, this restorative treatment can last a lifetime with proper care and check-ups with their dental provider at least twice a year. The crown, since it is above the surface of the gums, may not have quite as long a lifespan and will generally need to be replaced every 10-15 years with normal wear and tear and good oral hygiene.
Depending on where the implant is located in the mouth, some see more activity than others. The teeth in the back generally see more heavy duty wear and tear and may need to be replaced sooner than front implants.
Dental Implants vs. Other Tooth Replacement Options
Of the options for tooth replacement, dental implants are the preferred option since they offer a permanent solution. Dental implants look, act and feel like real teeth. With dentures, they need to be fitted properly so that they don’t slip while biting and chewing. Also, dentures require special cleaning and are removed from the mouth for that procedure. Since they are are a permanent fixture in the mouth, all cleaning is done as you would natural teeth by brushing and flossing regularly. Lastly, dental bridges can cause stress on neighboring teeth and cause further issues.
How Can Dental Implants Fail?
For the most part, dental implants are a permanent solution to tooth loss or damaged teeth when good oral hygiene is practiced. However, there are times when implants can fail prematurely. Patients that suffer from some pre-existing conditions, including cancer and diabetes, do run the risk of failure. While the implants can last a lifetime, if the patient does not practice good oral hygiene by brushing and flossing leading to periodontal disease (and seeing their dentist twice a year), the implants could fail.
Restorative Dentistry in Durham, NC
Should you decide that dental implants are something that you would like to do, then please contact the staff for Dr. Brent L. Blaylock in Durham, NC today. You can reach them at (919) 518-9963 or schedule online. Dr. Blaylock has had many years of experience and is well trained to handle all your dental concerns.