Once a dental implant fuses with your jawbone, you can use it in much the same way as a natural tooth. In fact, with good oral hygiene and oral habits, a dental implant can last just as long as a natural tooth.
If you are exploring the idea of using dental implants to restore lost teeth, you have several options available to you.
1. Replace Single Teeth With Individual Implants
If you are missing just one or two teeth, then dental implants are the ideal way to replace them. Dental implants fuse to your jawbone, and thereafter provide support for chewing and speaking. And once healing has taken place and your dental crowns are in position, your dental implants should be indistinguishable from the rest of your teeth.
But if you are missing more than two teeth, individual implants might be a little expensive. In this case, you can choose a dental bridge.
2. Replace Several Teeth With an Implant-Supported Bridge
Dental bridges come in several forms, such as a Maryland bridge and a traditional bridge. But the most stable and reliable bridge is an implant-supported bridge. Implant-supported bridges use one or more dental implants to support one or more pontics. Pontics consist of dental crowns that slip over gum tissue to replace missing teeth.
Dental implant-supported bridges are also a good option if you want to conserve the teeth adjacent to your missing tooth/teeth. With a traditional bridge, your dentist will need to turn at least one adjacent tooth into an abutment tooth to support one or more pontics. But you can avoid this by opting to use one or more dental implants as support teeth instead.
3. Replace an Entire Arch With an Implant-Supported Denture
If you are missing most of or an entire arch, then the fastest and most inexpensive way to replace these teeth with implants is with an implant-supported denture. For instance, to support a lower denture, your prosthodontist can place at least two dental implants. These implants will hold the denture in place.
With an implant-supported denture, you won't need to use messy dental adhesives to hold your denture in place. You'll also be able to avoid embarrassing situations that might come about because your dentures fall out as you are eating or speaking.
These are your options for tooth replacement with dental implants. Speak to your dentist and work out which of these treatments is best for your individual case.