Have you lost a tooth or teeth due to an infection or injury? Dental implants are a great invention – they can make it look as though your tooth is still intact, and are less expensive than dentures. These implants can restore self-confidence and make it easier to talk and eat while providing a natural look.

Dental implants are placed into the gums and hold a fake but realistic looking tooth above the gum. The process is quite involved, but the results are very positive.

Am I candidate?

Dental implants are not right for everyone. Your cosmetic dentist will need to make sure that you have a strong jawbone underneath your gums. Your gum tissue also has to be healthy and free of gum disease. Your first step is talking with your dentist to make sure that dental implants are right for you. In some cases, you will need to see a periodontal specialist.

How are dental implants placed?

The root implant, which is made of titanium, is placed into the bone socket where the tooth will be placed. After the placement, your jawbone will heal itself around the titanium implant. This secures it into the jaw and takes anywhere from six to 12 weeks. Next, a connector post is attached, followed by the new tooth that is made from an impression of your other teeth.

What can I expect after the dental implant?

You may experience some discomfort after your procedure, like a bruised feeling or aching gums. It’s important to follow all of the instructions given by your dentist or periodontist to make sure that you heal properly. Once you are all healed, you can take care of the implant just like you would your regular teeth. Make sure to brush twice a day and floss daily, and to avoid situations that made you lose your initial tooth. Taking care of your implants is especially important, because it is extremely difficult to install a new implant where there was one before.

While choosing to have dental implants installed is a great way to gain self-confidence and make it more comfortable to do daily tasks like eat and talk, it’s necessary to make sure you are prepared for the procedure and do everything you can to keep your implant clean and healthy.