Dental implants are the most natural-looking replacements of missing teeth. An implant consists of a metal post (mostly titanium), which is screwed inside a jaw bone, and topped with a tooth-like crown.
A dental implant is arguably the best artificial substitute for a missing tooth. Among all the available options in dentistry, an implant comes the closest to replicating the natural function and appearance of your lost teeth.
A dental implant is sure an expensive option, but it does offer significant advantages over other treatments for replacement of missing teeth. One major advantage is that an implant causes no harm to the adjacent teeth, unlike bridges, which require reduction or grinding of teeth.
Besides, an implant also helps maintain the integrity of alveolar bone, which otherwise tends to contract with the loss of every tooth.
However, there are viable options for patients especially from the first world nations who are seeking cheaper dental implants abroad. Indian, Mexican and Thai dental implants are any day reasonably priced and one could save a lot on the procedure in these nations.
Indications of Dental implants
- Loss of single tooth
- Loss of multiple teeth
- Ill-fitting/ uncomfortable dentures
Dental Implants Vs Dentures
Once a patient loses several or all of his teeth, they need to be quickly replaced to restore function and esthetics. Complete or partial removable dentures are commonly used to replace missing teeth, but an implant scores way higher when it comes to patient comfort and longevity.
Dental Implants Vs Root Canal
Root canal is advised when the caries has extended to the pulp (the soft, innermost part of the tooth). While a natural tooth can be saved by root canal in most cases, sometimes it is difficult or nearly impossible to carry out satisfactory treatment. Also, fractured or cracked teeth may be difficult to save with root canal treatment.
However, it cannot be said if it is better to save a natural tooth with root canal or replace it with an implant. Every patient and each tooth is a different case, and the treatment planning depends completely on an individual’s need.
Steps in a typical Dental Implant Procedure
- Drilling of a small hole in the edentulous region
- Placement of the implant screw
- Osseo-integration occurs simultaneously as the site heals
- Attachment of abutment
- Placement of the crown
Patient may experience some pain at the implant site, which is generally relived with prescription painkillers. Patients are advised to eat soft foods for a few days after the surgery and avoid any unnecessary pressure on the surgical site, as it may interfere with the fusion of the implant surrounding bone.
Maintenance of good oral hygiene is pivotal for the success of a dental implant, as any accumulation of debris may lead to infection, which in turn may cause implant failure.
Patients with the habit of smoking or any other adverse oral habits may be required to give up on those habits following implant procedures.
Though they are reported to have 90-95 percent success rate, the risks with dental implants are similar to those involving any surgical procedure.
A major risk in implant cases is its failure to integrate with the bone. If proper care is ensured by both the dentist and the patient, an implant should not fail. However, if it does, the dentist may remove the implant, allow sometime for bone healing and try to place it again.
Placement of dental implants also carries the risk of infection and damage to oral tissues. The procedure is technique-sensitive, and a dentist must ensure the surgery is performed correctly and the implant is placed accurately.
Proper patient history must be noted before the surgery to ensure the case is free of complications. Diabetic, hypertensive patients, and those with other debilitating conditions may require special care before and after the treatment.
The risks involving dental implant cases are mostly avoidable if the surgery is done at the hands of an expert and the patient complies with the instructions. However, in case problems arise, they can be managed by an implant specialist.
Research well and plan a great holiday for getting dental implants in Mexico, India or Thailand and experience ‘true smile’ on your face when you are back home.
DentaVacation facilitates affordable dental treatments at various destinations across the world. For more information, submit the estimate-request form on the right.