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Are You a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?

More than one hundred million people in the U.S. are missing at least one tooth. According to the Centers for Disease Control, 17% of adults over 65 have no natural teeth remaining. Missing one or more teeth can have serious repercussions, including difficulty chewing and speaking. It can also have an incredibly negative impact on your self-esteem and self-confidence. Fortunately, most people will be excellent candidates for dental implants. Read on to learn if you’re a good candidate for dental implants.

What are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are the best tooth replacement treatment available. Because dental implants use a biocompatible screw implanted in your jaw, they look and function like natural teeth. The implanted screw also preserves your jaw bone to prevent an altered facial appearance (sunken look around the mouth). 

Dental implants may also protect you from chronic infections linked to chronic conditions, including cardiovascular disease, stroke, and diabetes. Of course, the artificial teeth affixed to the tops of the screws also look like natural,  healthy teeth, so you’ll no longer feel insecure about smiling and speaking. 

Dental Implants & Your Jaw Bone: What to Know

All candidates for dental implants will need to be free of active gum disease and infection in the bone. However, the primary factor determining your eligibility will be the strength and integrity of your jaw bone.

If you’ve been missing teeth for an extended period, your jaw bone is undoubtedly compromised. With natural teeth, your jaw bone is anchored to your teeth via the tooth root. So, as time passes without a tooth root, the bone begins to recede. In order to support the dental implant, your jaw needs to be tall, wide, and strong enough to support the screw. 

If you have sufficient bone in your jaw, are in good overall health, do not take medicines such as blood thinners, and have adequate bone integrity, you are likely an excellent candidate for dental implants.  If you do not have sufficient jaw bone to support dental implants, you may need bone grafting surgery to reinforce your jaw before getting dental implants. 

Dental implants are available to eligible candidates who need to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth in a row, or an entire upper or lower arch of teeth. Candidates needing to replace all upper or lower teeth will not require a screw implanted for every tooth. The innovative “All on Four” procedure allows you to restore an entire upper or lower arch of teeth using as few as four dental implant screws. 

Are Dental Implants Better Than Dental Bridges?

Dental implants are the best choice to replace missing teeth because they strengthen your jaw. However, there are some individuals who, due to underlying health conditions or medications, will not be eligible for implants. Although dental implants are unanimously viewed as the gold standard for replacing missing teeth, a dental bridge is a worthwhile restorative treatment for those ineligible for implants.  

Lakeville Dental is your hometown dental practice. They provide general dentistry, restorative dentistry, and dental implants, allowing them to provide their customers with the highest quality care for their teeth.

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