This article discusses the tooth replacement solutions available for people who have lost one or more teeth, with a special focus on dental implants.
Sometimes you just know its best to keep your mouth shut. After all, no one else needs to know your little secret. There’s no reason to let anyone know you are missing teeth. There is someone, though, you should and can open up to. That would be the Chicago implant dentist: the dental healthcare professional that will examine your particular case and make recommendations for treatment that will put the smile back on your face.
If Something’s Missing in Life…
In most cases, the preferred choice of implant dentists in Chicago when it comes to replacing missing teeth is dental implants. These highly qualified and experienced professionals can replace missing teeth when bridges and partial dentures just won’t work, or fall short of providing patients with the sophisticated, comprehensive and long-term solutions they desire.
Tooth loss is most commonly the result of periodontal (gum) disease: an advanced oral bacterial infection of the soft tissues surrounding the teeth and the underlying bone. It is especially important for Chicago residents to seek immediate attention from their dentist or periodontist if they are experiencing symptoms of this terrible oral affliction. Once gum disease sets in, bacteria damage the connective tissue and bone in the mouth, sometimes causing both to recede to expose the darker and more vulnerable roots of the teeth. Left untreated, gum disease causes tooth loss.
Signs and Symptoms of Gum Disease
- Your gums bleed when brushed or flossed,
- Your gums are sensitive and inflamed (red),
- Your gums have swollen and encroached upon your teeth, giving you a “gummy” smile,
- You have chronic bad breath,
- Your teeth are loose or appear to have moved,
- Your teeth look discolored and have white deposits on and between them,
- Your teeth and gum margins have brown mottling on them,
- Your gums ooze pus when pushed,
- You have lost one or more teeth to decay.
If any of these symptoms sound familiar, then you may be at risk of tooth loss if you haven’t already lost teeth.
About Dental Implants
Dental implants are artificial teeth made of titanium metal. They are placed into your jaw at the site/s of the missing tooth or teeth. Because titanium is totally biocompatible, the jaw readily accepts the dental implant and the bone cells will actually bond to its surface in a process called ‘osseointegration’. This provides a strong foundation for a restoration, such as a dental crown (in the case of single missing teeth) or a customized fixed prosthesis (in the case of multiple adjacent missing teeth).
Dental implants can be placed in patients of all ages, as long as the jawbone is fully developed and as long as the patient is in good health and doesn’t present with any complicated illnesses that might render surgery dangerous. Dental implants will go a long way to improve self-esteem and restore one’s ability to eat, smile and speak with confidence. They can also last several decades if cared for properly. Additionally, newer technologies have actually lowered the cost of dental implant procedures: making them quicker, more efficient and more affordable.