With the rising aging population, the number of people with missing teeth is also on the rise. As we age our natural teeth become more susceptible to dental decay, wear and tear and other general complications. There are options such as dentures that can replace missing teeth, but they are not always an optimal replacement. For example, dentures can make it difficult to chew certain foods or speak properly. They are also fairly noticeable which may cause you embarrassment in some situations.
Why Tooth loss Happens
Tooth loss is one of the most common problems associated with aging. It can happen for a number of reasons, including gum disease, tooth decay, and wear and tear.
Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. It is caused by bacteria that build up in the mouth, causing the gums to become inflamed and eventually to recede. If not treated, gum disease can destroy the bone that supports the teeth and lead to tooth loss.
Tooth decay is another common cause of tooth loss. It occurs when acids from plaque eat away at the enamel of the teeth. If not treated, tooth decay can lead to cavities and eventually to tooth loss.
Wear and tear is a third common cause of tooth loss. As we age, our teeth begin to wear down from use. This can eventually lead to cracks and chips in the teeth, which can make them more susceptible to decay and infection. Over time, this wear and tear can lead to tooth loss.
The Importance of Dental Implants
The loss of teeth can have a significant impact on a person’s overall health and quality of life. Studies have shown that people with missing teeth are more likely to develop certain chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and respiratory problems.
Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that are placed into the jawbone to support a dental prosthesis, such as a crown, bridge, or denture. Unlike traditional dentures, which rest on the gums, dental implants are anchored into the jawbone and provide a more stable foundation for replacement teeth.
The placement of dental implants is a surgical procedure that should be performed by a qualified oral surgeon. The success rate of dental implants is high, and they can last for many years with proper care.
Types of Implants
Implants are usually of two types: endosteal and subperiosteal. Endosteal implants are placed within the bone, while subperiosteal implants are placed on top of the bone. The type of implant chosen depends on many factors, including the amount of bone available, the patient’s health and the number of teeth being replaced.
Endosteal implants are the most commonly used type of implant. They are made of titanium and are placed within the jawbone. This type of implant is most often used to replace a single tooth or several teeth in a row. The titanium root form is placed into the jawbone and allowed to heal for several months before a dental prosthetic is attached to it.
Subperiosteal implants are placed on top of the jawbone, under the gum tissue. They are made of metal frameworks that support one or more artificial teeth. Subperiosteal implants are not as common as endosteal implants, but they may be an option for people who do not have enough bone height for endosteal implants or for those who cannot have surgery to place endosteal implants.
Dental implants are a surgical procedure that involves placing a metal post into the jawbone to serve as a prosthetic tooth root. The post is then topped with a porcelain crown, which looks and functions like a natural tooth.
Dental implants are an important treatment option for patients who are missing one or more teeth. Not only do they improve the aesthetics of your smile, but they also help to preserve the structure of your jawbone and prevent further tooth loss.
Studies have shown that dental implants can also help to improve the overall health of older adults. In one study, it was found that patients who had dental implants were less likely to develop dementia than those who did not have dental implants. While this is not a direct cause of dementia or other diseases, the 20 year study does seem to show a correlation between tooth loss and chronic diseases later in life.
There are many reasons why someone might lose their teeth as they age, including gum disease, tooth decay, and trauma. Regardless of the reason, missing teeth can have a major impact on your quality of life. If you are missing teeth, talk to your dentist about whether dental implants might be right for you.
Cost of Dental Implants
The cost of dental implants can vary depending on the type of implant, the number of teeth being replaced, and the location of the dentist. However, in general, dental implants can be quite expensive. The average cost of a single tooth implant is around $3,500 to $5,000, while a full set of implants can cost upwards of $20,000 to $30,000. While dental insurance may cover some of the costs associated with dental implants, it is important to remember that not all insurance plans will do so. Therefore, it is important to check with your insurance provider before undergoing any dental work.
Dentures and Dental Bridges
Dentures and dental bridges are two common options for people with missing teeth. Both have their own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to consult with your dentist to determine which option is best for you.
Dentures are a removable prosthetic device that can replace one or more missing teeth. They are typically made of acrylic or plastic and are custom-fit to your mouth. Dentures can be full or partial, depending on how many teeth you are missing.
Advantages of dentures include:
- They are less expensive than dental implants
- They can be removed and cleaned easily
- They do not require surgery
Disadvantages of dentures include:
- They may slip or move around in your mouth, causing discomfort
- They may make it difficult to speak or eat certain foods
- They require regular maintenance and cleaning
Cost of Dentures and Bridgework
The cost of dentures and bridgework can be significant, especially if you need multiple teeth replaced. Dental implants are the most expensive option, but they are also the most permanent and stable solution. If you are missing several teeth, and if your budget is not in question, your best option may be to get dental implants to replace them.