Even though you may be missing a tooth or teeth, you still need to eat, speak, and enjoy life as naturally as possible. At Nova Surgicare, many patients come to our office looking for a solution to dentures which often look and feel unnatural. Patients who have not heard of dental implants are often surprised to hear about the convenience and natural appearance of a procedure which can return the vigor to a mouth and smile that is missing teeth.
Partials, or partial dentures, are a series of one or more false teeth which are worn to replace a missing tooth or teeth. Most commonly partial dentures are used when the neighboring teeth are not sufficiently healthy in structure to support a dental bridge. However, partial dentures may have been the only option you were offered when faced with tooth loss.
While partial dentures are preferable over a gap where the missing teeth once stood, they rarely perform as well as your natural teeth and often look false, creating embarrassment when you speak or smile.
Dental implants also replace missing teeth, but in a very different way than partial dentures. Dental implants consist of a titanium post inserted directly into your jaw bone, just like the root of a natural tooth. Because titanium is an inert metal that is uniquely suited to bone growth, over a period of three to six months your jaw bone will grow around the titanium post and secure it into place, just like your neighboring teeth’s roots.
When the post is secure, an abutment is placed over it, and on top of that a tooth crown is attached that looks and acts just like your natural tooth. Not only does this allow your smile to look natural once again, but allows you to eat and speak in a natural manner, as though you never lost your tooth or teeth.
Additionally, implant dentistry allows for the placement of several implants next to one another, which can either hold individual tooth crowns or a dental bridge which can replace several teeth at once. However, unlike a partial denture, a dental bridge fixed in place with dental implants has similar stability to your natural teeth, can be cared for like your natural teeth, does not have to be removed for cleaning, and will not dislodge at times and cause embarrassment.
You may learn more about the difference between partial dentures and dental implants today when you contact Dr. Daria Hamrah, double board-certified oral and maxillofacial surgeon, at Nova Surgicare, serving patients throughout the areas of Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Northern Virginia.