For many patients, dental implants can be a life-changing procedure. Implants return your smile to full function and appearance. Often, patients want to know if they make a good candidate for dental implants. Your Park Ridge dentists, Dr. Maria Loukas and Dr. Thanasi Loukas, discuss the advantages of dental implants and the qualifications needed to undergo this innovative procedure.
Qualifying for Dental Implants
In addition to missing one or more teeth, patients will also need to have enough jawbone tissue to support the new implant. If you don’t, your Park Ridge dentist may recommend a bone graft. Patients with chronic medical disorders, such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease, will need to be evaluated individually. In addition, lifestyle factors like smoking or a history of poor dental hygiene can affect your ability to receive dental implants. Dr. Maria or Thanasi Loukas will perform a thorough oral examination, assessing your dental health and prior medical history before deciding whether dental implants will work for you.
The Importance of Restoring Missing Teeth
What happens when we lose a tooth? Why is replacing a lost tooth so critical? When an adult loses a permanent tooth, the body immediately responds by suspending the flow of vital nutrients to the surrounding jawbone. Deprived of crucial doses of phosphorus and calcium, the bone tissue begins to degrade, increasing the risk of further tooth loss. The adjacent teeth sometimes even drift towards the empty socket, causing bite misalignment that may lead to difficulty speaking or chewing.
How Do Dental Implants Work?
While other procedures, such as dental bridges, replace a tooth, these techniques rarely address the loss of jawbone dentistry. An implant is composed of a biocompatible post placed into the socket of a missing tooth. The bone tissue bonds with the post, anchoring your implant into place. An abutment is added to the top of the post. Your Park Ridge dentists will then place a custom-made and natural looking dental prosthetic such as a crown or partial denture onto the abutment. The body responds to the implant as if it is a natural tooth. As a result, the flow of nutrients resume, preserving your jawbone tissue and preventing further tooth loss.