An unsightly gap in the smile is bad enough in itself, but a missing tooth (or multiple missing teeth) also presents a major decision for dental patients. How do you choose among all of the different tooth replacement options available in modern dentistry?
Dental implants, which offer the most advanced tooth replacement technology available, are now the gold standard among Chicago patients. Implants have a number of advantages over other alternatives, and they can be used to fill in for a single tooth or to secure an entire arch of replacement teeth.
Made of biocompatible titanium, dental implants—which look like small screws—are able to bond with the jaw bone. This process, known as osseointegration, allows the implant to serve as a strong, durable root-like structure that will help to anchor the jaw in addition to replacing the missing tooth. When a tooth and its accompanying root are lost, the jaw bone can begin to recede through resorption. It is important to consider that other tooth replacement methods, such as bridges and dentures, do not replicate the tooth’s root as an implant does.
In comparison to other tooth replacement methods, implants offer superior function. Unlike dentures, implants stay firmly in place, meaning that implant patients don’t need to overhaul their diets to accommodate their new teeth. Additionally, implants offer the same access to the gumline as natural teeth, so patients can use customary brushing and flossing routines to maintain their oral health. Bridges, on the other hand, not only damage adjacent teeth, but prevent the patient from properly accessing the gumline, making it harder to keep bacteria at bay.
Implants offer benefits in terms of aesthetic appeal, as well. The artificial tooth cap that tops the implant can be designed to the specifications of your smile, making the implant virtually indistinguishable from its neighboring natural teeth.
Dr. Steven A. Koos, an implant dentist serving Chicago, can place a patient’s implants during an appointment in the office. In fact, many patients may be able to undergo implant placement while under sedation alone, rather than general anesthesia.
If you need to replace a missing tooth in the Windy City, contact Chicago’s premier implant center, ORA Oral Surgery & Implant Studio at 312.328.9000 to schedule your consultation.