A missing tooth affects much more than your appearance. In fact, loss of a tooth can lead to several smile-changing consequences, including drifting teeth, a shrinking jawbone and difficulty eating. Luckily, dental implants offered by your North Vernon, IN, dentist, Dr. Scott Terry, can fill the gaps in your smile.
Implants offer a new approach to tooth restoration
Thanks to dental implants, it's now possible to replace your missing tooth from the roots to the crown. The implant is a small titanium post added to your jawbone during a minor oral surgical procedure. Titanium is a biocompatible metal that bonds easily to the jaw bone. Over the course of three to six months, your implant will become firmly attached to your jawbone and serve as a synthetic root.
Once bonding occurs, a dental crown that looks like the tooth you lost will be added to the top of the implant with a connector called an abutment. Your North Vernon dentist will make an impression of your teeth to ensure that your new crown fits the gap in your mouth perfectly and looks completely natural.
Dental implants help keep your smile healthy
Several changes can happen after you lose a tooth. Your other teeth may begin to move toward the opening in your mouth, which not only affects your appearance but may also change your bite.
Your jawbone may begin to shrink because it's no longer stimulated by tooth roots. When that happens, you may eventually experience further tooth loss if the jawbone can no longer support the teeth. As the jaw shrinks, it won't be able to adequately support the facial muscles, which can cause sagging in your lower face.
Dental implants prevent these unpleasant consequences and also restore your ability to chew and bite foods easily.
Implants are an excellent option no matter how many teeth you've lost
Many people know that dental implants can be used to replace just one missing tooth but aren't aware that the restorations are also a good choice if you've lost more than one tooth. If you've lost several teeth in a row, you may benefit from an implant-supported bridge. Implant-supported dentures can even replace all of the teeth in your upper or lower jaw. The dentures are more comfortable than full dentures and improve your biting power.
Fill the gaps in your smile with dental implants! Call your North Vernon, IN, dentist, Dr. Scott Terry at (812) 346-4500 to schedule an appointment.