Missing teeth can be a hassle to deal with, but various tooth replacement options may work for you. Bridges and dentures are popular options due to their affordability and widespread use. However, one alternative that you may want to consider is dental implants.
Dental implants involve surgically inserting a titanium screw or post into the jaw which will act as a replacement tooth root. A crown or replacement tooth is then affixed to the implant. Dental implants are natural-looking and feel like real teeth. If you are thinking about implants, here's what you need to know.
They Don't Impact Surrounding Teeth
One reason why many people choose dental implants over bridges or dentures is that there is no pressure put on the teeth surrounding the implant. Bridges or dentures are anchored to adjacent teeth, which may damage the anchor teeth over time. Since a dental implant is integrated into your jawbone, no support from other teeth is required. A dental implant also works to preserve your jaw bone. Some people feel this makes dental implants a healthier choice for tooth replacement.
The Procedure Takes Time
While dental implants are often the superior option when it comes to tooth replacement, it's not a fast process. It can take months before the dental implant procedure is complete. The procedure is usually done over multiple appointments. In some cases, you may need bone or tissue grafting before the dental implant can be inserted. After that, the dental implant can be put in place. Once the implant is in place, you'll need to wait a few months to let your bone grow around and stabilize the implant — then the abutment and crown can be put into place.
They Are Cost-Effective
Another thing that you should know about dental implants is that while they are expensive (as the upfront cost is higher than bridges or dentures), they will usually last for a lifetime making them a more cost-effective option. This is something to keep in mind when you are looking into your tooth replacement options. The average cost for a dental implant ranges between $3,000 and $4,500 per implant. If you require bone or tissue grafts, your total cost will be higher.
Dental implants are a great option if you want to a long term solution that preserves your smile and your other teeth. To learn more about dental implants, contact a dentist near you.