Here are 4 key ways that dental implants can make it easier for you to maintain good oral health:
1. Reduced Risk of Cavities
With dentures and permanent bridges, it can be very difficult to clean around the artificial teeth, or under them. This can lead to increased risk of plaque build up and to small food particles being trapped in your mouth for long periods of time.
Plus, bacteria may fester in the socket left behind after a tooth extraction or after tooth loss, creating acids that spread in your mouth and increase the risk of tooth decay.
Dental implants fill in the socket where your natural tooth used to be and function just like natural teeth. You can care for implants in the exact same way as "real" teeth without increasing your risk of cavities or other tooth decay.
2. Reduced Risk of Periodontal Problems
The difficulty of cleaning around dentures/bridges will affect gum health as much as it does tooth health. And the same is true of any bacterial infection that might occur in an empty tooth socket.
Plus, the periodontal tissue underneath removable dentures gets rubbed and made sore as you chew, speak, and just wear your dentures throughout the day. This can create lesions, bleeding, and infections in your gums below the dentures.
Besides being painful, periodontal disease and other problems caused by long use of dentures is dangerous to your oral and overall health. But dental implants eliminate those risks.
3. Prevention of Bone Loss
Teeth put pressure on the jawbone into which they are naturally embedded, and it is this pressure that keeps your underlying bone mass healthy and strong.
After tooth loss, bone matter under the lost tooth gradually "resorbs" into your body. This weakens your jaw and can even lead to facial collapse or jaw bone fractures in extreme cases. The longer you wait after tooth loss to get a dental implant, the more bone mass and density you lose. Dental implants can prevent this bone loss, but if much bone has already been lost, bone grafting surgery may have to precede implant surgery to ensure your implant root will have a safe, firm foundation.
4. Avoiding "Dental Drift"
In a full mouth of teeth, each tooth helps keep its neighbors in their proper places. But gaps provide opportunity for teeth to gradually shift and move in your mouth.
This kind of "dental drift" can lead to misaligned teeth and an improper bite, which in turn make it harder to exercise proper dental hygiene.
Drifting teeth could require braces or other corrective measures, besides affecting your smile and your oral hygiene. Dental implants keep teeth in their place by filling in the gaps left by lost natural teeth.
Thus, in a variety of important ways, dental implants can promote a healthier mouth as opposed to other tooth loss solutions.
To learn more about dental implants and their many benefits, feel free to contact periodontist Dr. Raymond A. Kenzik in Ormond Beach, FL, today!