Despite the vast improvements in dental care, many of us still suffer from tooth loss. Whether from tooth decay, periodontal disease, or injury, losing a tooth has a huge impact on our self confidence and desire to share a smile. For many years, the only treatment options available for people with missing teeth were bridges and dentures.
But today, dental implants are available. Not familiar with a dental implant? Basically it is an artificial tooth that your Afdent dentist attaches to a small titanium post that is surgically implanted in your jaw. They are designed to match your existing teeth and are safe, comfortable, and attractive.
There are a number of benefits to dental implants over other tooth replacement procedures. They support your existing teeth and help keep them from getting loose. They also allow you to enjoy your favorite meals without any discomfort. They function just like or original teeth.
Many of our patients have reported greater self-confidence after getting dental implants. You now have the self-assurance to share your new radiant smile. And dental implants can help prevent more serious problems down the road. Our jawbone is designed to support a mouthful of healthy teeth. Missing or damaged teeth can erode the underlying bone structure in your jaw that may cause problems later in life.
Despite their recent popularity, there are a number of unfounded myths about dental implants. Let’s examine these misconceptions and see whether they stand up to the facts.
Myth #1: Dental Implants Aren’t Affordable
While dental implants may present a higher upfront cost than other tooth replacement options, that doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t afford them. When considering dental implant costs, it’s important to think about long-term expense.
A dental bridge or dentures generally only lasts 7-15 years before they need to be replaced. Because they are designed to last longer, dental implants may offer a better long-term value.
And don’t forget that at Afdent, financing is available to break the cost of the treatment into manageable chunks. It’s also worth noting that over time more insurance companies are providing coverage for dental implants.
Myth #2: Dental Implants are Painful
While many of us are afraid of oral surgery, nothing is more painful than uncorrected dental problems. Just ask anyone who has suffered from the discomfort and agony of a prolonged toothache. Multiply that pain many times over and you’ll have a good idea of what living with damaged or missing teeth is like.
On the other hand, most of our patients express that receiving their dental implant was simpler and less painful than they had imagined. Most procedures only require the use of local anesthesia to prevent you from feeling pain, but nitrous oxide may also be used to help reduce discomfort and anxiety. Once dental implants are in place, they look and feel just like real teeth.
Myth #3: Dental Implants Will Rust or Won’t Last
Dispelling the myth about rusting is easy. At the heart of every implant is a surgical-grade titanium post, the same metal used to fabricate joint replacements. It will never rust. One of titanium’s main advantages is its ability to bond with human tissue. This means that your dental implant will literally become part of your body.
If you are concerned about how long they will last, studies have shown that dental implants have a 98% success rate. On the rare occasions that they do fail, the cause can usually be traced back to either another health condition or a mistake made during the implant process. This is why you should only choose a dentist with the proper training and experience needed to perform this procedure, like our providers at Afdent. And with proper care, dental implants should last a lifetime.
Myth #4: Dental Implants Look Fake
Are you concerned that the implanted tooth won’t match your other teeth? Nothing could be further from the truth. Modern implants are designed to match the recipient’s surrounding teeth and soft tissues precisely.
Our dentists are experts in the aesthetics of implant restorations. We are able to provide the perfect shape and color match to ensure your implant looks natural. You can then have confidence in knowing that your implant is indistinguishable from a natural tooth.
Myth #5: Most People Are Not Candidates for Dental Implants
In most cases, anyone healthy enough to undergo a routine dental extraction or oral surgery can be considered for a dental implant. You should have healthy gums and enough bone to hold the implant. It also helps to be committed to good oral hygiene and regular dental visits.
Your Afdent dentist will perform a thorough exam of your mouth to determine if dental implants are right for you. Certain factors, such as gum disease or a lack of adequate bone density may mean that you have to wait before you can restore your smile with implants. However, we may be able to address such issues with you on an individual basis.
Hopefully we have busted a few myths and misconceptions about dental implants that have prevented you from enjoying a better smile. Thousands of individuals receive dental implants every year and experience lasting satisfaction with the results. Visit Afdent in Mishawaka or Fort Wayne and get the facts for yourself. You’ll look back on this decision with a big smile on your face.