When are dental implants used?

Dental implants can basically be used in any situation where there are one or more missing teeth. Of course, there are other factors that play a role in feasibility of this treatment, such as the health of the patient and the amount of remaining jawbone.

Dental implants are used now days for a variety of reasons. They can be used to replace a missing tooth. Implants can also be used to support dentures using special attachments that allow the dentures to snap in and out. This gives the patient wearing dentures an amazing change in how secure their dentures feel and bite. Multiple dental implants can be used to support a fixed bridge or hybrid denture (teeth are not removable by the patient). All of these implant options pre-suppose that the patient has adequate bone to place the implants into. If the patient does not have adequate bone there are several grafting techniques used to replace the missing bone. Temporary mini-implants can also be used by the orthodontist to provide anchorage to be able to push or pull off of to move teeth faster.
If you are missing a tooth but you are in good general health, with healthy gums and a jawbone that can support an implant, implant treatment may be an option for you. (However, keep in mind that in many cases, third molars -- called "wisdom teeth" -- do not require replacement.) Health is more a factor than is your age. For example, chronic illnesses, such as diabetes or leukemia, may interfere with healing after surgery. And if you use tobacco, you are at greater risk of experiencing gum disease, which can weaken the bone and tissues needed to support the implant.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.