Older Patient With Dental Implants Opening Mouth Widely While LaughingDental implants are one of the most common and popular options for replacing missing teeth. While dental implants are not recommended for everyone, such as those experiencing severe loss of bone tissue, they do provide stability, longevity, and improved appearance and function without complicated maintenance or repairs.

If you have lost one or more teeth, and are considering dental implants, review the five most popular reasons that our patients opt for dental implants.

1. Longevity

Dental implants are a permanent solution for replacing missing teeth. Due to their structure and components, they can last up to 25 years. Based on studies published in the International Journal of Implant Dentistry, dental implants have been shown to yield the optimal results when it comes to the replacement of missing teeth in adults. Conventional prosthetics were shown to have lower success and survival rates than dental implants.

Traditional dentures may typically last about seven years. Longevity also relies on the stability of the bone of the jaw. Over time, traditional dentures may not fit as well due to bone loss or aging gums. In addition, improper cleaning or care for removable dentures or bridges increases the risk of periodontal or gum disease. This also results in poor fit leading to discomfort, chewing, and bite difficulties.

Because a dental implant is a “fake” tooth, it will not decay like a natural tooth. Therefore, dental implant patients have a lower risk of developing periodontal disease.

Studies have also shown dental implants can be successfully placed in older patients (those over 60 years of age). While a number of factors can influence the long-term success of the implant, such as severe bone loss or in patients where bone augmentation prior to the implant surgery was performed, dental implants for older patients is a safe and cost-effective solution to deal with aging or missing teeth.

2. Prevent Teeth from Shifting

Dental implants, contrary to dentures, are fixed to the jaw bone like your natural teeth. Traditional dentures sit on top of the gums. However, over time, otherwise healthy teeth surrounding the socket of a missing tooth (or several) can contribute not only to teeth shifting and causing discomfort but also additional deterioration of bone, jaw structure, and facial features.

When a tooth is lost, the gradual shifting of surrounding teeth toward the empty space has the potential to contribute to chewing difficulties and reduced biting force and capability. Jaw mobility may also be compromised, and the potential for increased risk of tooth decay is prevalent due to the difficulty of properly cleaning around the empty socket.

A dental implant restricts the ability of adjacent teeth to drift or even collapse into the open space. They can also replace one missing tooth, several, or multiple teeth on the upper or lower mandible and are designed to support partial or total bridges on the lower or upper jaw, providing restoration of function, appearance, and comfort for the patient.

3. Reduce Further Bone Loss

Dental implants are affixed onto titanium posts implanted into the bone of the jaw. New bone growth stimulated over several weeks helps to support these posts. The stimulation and preservation of bone in the jaw maintain not the only function of the upper and lower mandible but also facial structure.

Dental implants will not decay. Their placement also prevents neighboring teeth from shifting, which helps maintain the structure of the jawbone as well as the normal bite and jaw joint mobility. In a study with a sample grouping of 200 patients, it has been determined that the survival rate of a dental implant, even in those patients who have a history of periodontal disease, is deemed not only viable but safe.

4. Improved Appearance & Function

Dental implants are designed to blend naturally with your existing teeth in shape, texture, and color tone. They are easy to maintain and do not require any removal for cleaning. Most importantly, they stimulate the growth of bone tissue around the implant post. Because of the stability, dental implants can last decades and enable full chewing function as well as jaw alignment.

Dental implants are effective in mimicking the function of missing teeth. Because implant posts are inserted into the jawbone, they are stabilized and do not come loose or shift around like dentures may do while chewing.

In aging patients, dental implants have been shown to improve overall health-related quality of life not only in regard to appearance but in the ability to chew and speak. In a study involving older dental patients (aged 65 to 75 years), those who received conventional dentures supported by dental implants on either side stated improved stability, ability to chew, as well as comfort over those who were fitted with traditional removable dentures.

Eating with Dental Implants

Finally, dental implants do not require food limitations as traditional removable dentures can. With dental implants, you do not have to avoid certain foods, whether they are hard or sticky, hot, or cold. With dental implants, you can enjoy all the foods that you love without restriction.

5. Cost-Effective

While traditional removable dentures are less expensive than dental implants, they can be less effective in function. Dental implants might have a higher up-front cost, but because of their longevity and their ability to function like natural teeth, they do not require maintenance and can last for decades, offering a higher value over the long term.

Dental implants are brushed and flossed, just like your regular teeth, and do not need to re-removed or require special cleansers or solutions for cleaning, which also saves on costs.

Call Somerset Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Group Today

If you have questions or concerns about dental implants or the procedures involved, our experienced oral surgeons will provide the answers you seek to make a knowledgeable decision regarding dental implants to replace your missing teeth.

Visit us or call our offices at Somerset Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Group, serving the Somerset and Hunterdon County area today.