Four Things You Should Know about Dental Implants
Implant dentistry is one of the true miracles of dental science. Dental implants have allowed thousands of people who were missing some or all of their natural teeth to restore form and function to their mouths, in the process allowing them to chew, speak, and smile with confidence once again. In the hands of an accomplished implant dentist, such as Dr. Jose Valenzuela, serving Yuma, Palm Springs, and communities throughout the Southwest, dental implants are among the most successful treatments in all of medicine.
If you are considering dental implants, here are four things you should know:
- Because they are made of titanium, which the human body does not recognize as a foreign substance, dental implants are very rarely rejected. The five-year success rate for dental implants is 95 percent for the lower jaw and 90 percent for the upper jaw. The more experienced the surgeon, the closer these rates are to 100 percent.
- If you smoke, you should quit before undergoing dental implant surgery. Smoking substantially increases the chances of implant failure.
- While many dental websites promote dental implants as “permanent,” it is best to think of implants as a long-term – rather than a permanent – solution to missing teeth. The restorations attached to the implant, such as dental crowns and bridges, will likely require repair or replacement after ten years or so. The titanium posts themselves could possibly last a lifetime; however, they too may require repair over time.
- Oral hygiene remains an important concern after dental implant surgery. While dental crowns, bridges, and dentures are immune to cavities, the structures that support the dental implants remain susceptible to infection and disease. Gum disease can cause the implants to become loose and possibly even fall out. Regular professional cleanings and good oral hygiene habits are as important with dental implants as they are with your original teeth.