Dental implants represent one of the biggest technological advances in dental science in recent years. According to studies conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), dentistry has significantly improved with advancing technology and increased medical and dental care since the 1970s. Unfortunately, modern advances in dental care have not entirely stemmed the tide of tooth loss. Millions of people are missing at least one tooth due to dental caries, an injury, decay or a gum disease like gingivitis. If you have one or more missing teeth, we can show you how dental implants can solve your problem permanently and change your life. For tooth replacement, a custom-designed dental implant offers you the best natural, durable solution available today. With all that modern technology has to offer and the services we provide our patients, you don’t have to live with missing teeth ever again! Learn more about dental implants and what our team at Family and Cosmetic Dentistry of the Rockies can do for you.
You might think that missing a tooth is just an inconvenience and the only effect it will have is on your appearance. But, the fact is, missing teeth can cause your gums to progressively recede and can even change the way you talk and sound. If a tooth is missing in one area, it may cause abnormal growth for the tooth above or below it and may cause that opposing tooth to lose strength. One missing tooth can lead to the loss of surrounding teeth, as the teeth support one another when chewing and talking. Those who have lower incomes and less education are more likely to be missing teeth as their access to healthcare or periodontal treatment is lower than those with higher incomes and education. Current smokers also tend to have more oral care problems and are at higher risk of losing teeth. Missing teeth have been linked to or caused by problems such as obesity, diabetes, nutritional changes, coronary artery disease, cancer, poor oral hygiene, gum disease and injury. Dentures are not always an optimal choice for a missing tooth. Learn how dental implants can help curb some of the problems missing teeth can cause AND improve your health!
Many studies have been conducted for tooth loss in adults. Most adults have 32 total teeth comprising 4 canines, 12 molars (that include the 4 wisdom teeth), 8 incisors and 8 premolars. Studies by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research show that adults between ages 20-64 only have an average of about 25 teeth remaining and 3.75% of that population have no remaining teeth whatsoever. If you don’t know what those percentages correlate to, a similar study by the American College of Prosthodontists helps us with those figures. More than 35 million Americans do not have any teeth and more than 178 million Americans are missing one or more teeth. Each year, millions more are added into those figures. With such advanced, improved technology in recent years, why then is tooth loss so prevalent?
The American Dental Association tells us that about 91% of adults between 20-64 had dental caries and 27% had untreated dental decay, which can easily lead to permanent tooth loss. 1 in 5 adults over 65 also had untreated dental decay. No wonder so many people lose teeth! Dental caries is more frequently known as cavities or tooth decay. This is caused when the enamel of the teeth breaks down from bacteria (mostly in plaque that is left on teeth). These produce acidic compounds which can then destroy your tooth enamel, which is the hard, outer layer of your teeth. This acid can also seep into the softer enamel of your teeth causing dental caries (or decay) inside the tooth as well. Brushing and flossing the recommended amount of twice a day can greatly help your tooth enamel to stay strong and free of bacteria-breeding plaque. Brushing and flossing your teeth after every meal is even more ideal for optimal oral health. Most instances of tooth decay occur because of poor hygiene practices, and therefore can be prevented. When a tooth goes missing though, your next course of action should be a dental implant to improve the integrity and structure of your teeth.
Dental implants are the best option for replacing missing teeth as they are natural looking, strong and secure. In many cases, your dental implant might even be stronger than a natural tooth would be. In this procedure, we will place a titanium post into your jawbone. This will secure the tooth in your mouth. Afterwards, we will place a prosthetic tooth into the post where it will stay for years to come. Depending on your oral health, you may receive your dental post in one appointment and the dental crown (tooth) in a separate appointment to allow the post to securely set into the jawbone. Our dental implants are very realistic and durable, so you don’t have to worry about your tooth for many years. You will experience many benefits as well. Dental implants can keep your remaining teeth in place and sturdy, while also preserving or restoring your facial structure and preventing gum recession. The surrounding bone will stay secure as well as the bones of other teeth close by. After a short period of recovery, your chewing will be restored and your speaking will go back to normal if it had changed with the absence of a tooth. Although a dental implant is not a real tooth, it still must receive proper care as you would a normal tooth. The better you take care of your implant, the longer it will last. With your missing-tooth problem out of the way, dental implants greatly improve your health and put you on the road to better speech, better nutrition, and improved confidence from a complete smile.
No matter your oral health, you can always call Family & Cosmetic Dentistry of the Rockies at (970) 223-6101 for a consultation and review of your teeth. If you are missing a tooth, we urge you to come into our office and see what we can do for you to keep your oral health the best it can be.