Replacing a missing tooth is one of the most beneficial oral health decisions you can make. Not only does a gap in your smile detract from your appearance, leaving that gap in place dramatically increases your chances of losing more teeth. Our Northern Virginia cosmetic dentist Dr. Pamela Marzban offers several options for replacing a missing tooth, but the most permanent solution is a dental implant.
Do you have a missing tooth and want to learn whether dental implants are right for you? Please call 703-323-8200 today for an appointment with implant dentist Dr. Marzban in Burke, VA.
Why Choose a Dental Implant?
For good candidates, implant dentistry offers many advantages. A dental implant:
- Looks like a real, natural tooth
- Has a stable, durable foundation
- Is non-removable and will remain securely in place
- Lasts many years, possibly a lifetime
- Promotes strong, healthy bone beneath your teeth
- Prevents other teeth from shifting and tilting into the space of the missing tooth
- Replaces a missing tooth without using surrounding teeth for support
- Requires only the same dental care as your other teeth
If you are looking for a natural-looking tooth replacement, dental implants are your best option. Not only is the dental crown an exact match, your gums will grow up around the implant just like a natural tooth.
The durable foundation of dental implants means you can keep eating all your favorite foods. Enjoy steak, corn on the cob, whole apples and more!
Because dental implants are securely bonded to your bone, they can last a long time. Studies have shown that dental implants easily last 30 years or more. Although they aren’t scientific reports, there are anecdotal accounts of people with implants for 50 years!
When you lose a tooth, the missing tooth root – the portion below your gums – can have negative consequences for your oral health. The bone in that area can deteriorate over time, causing a shrunken, collapsed jaw appearance. A dental implant is the only kind of tooth replacement that can prevent this from happening by replacing the tooth root.
Dental implants hold their space like natural teeth, so your other teeth won’t shift. And while bridges and dentures rely on other teeth for support, dental implants support themselves. That means they won’t put other teeth at risk.
Caring for dental implants is easy, too. Just brush, floss, and see your dentist regularly.
Replacing a Missing Tooth Can Save Your Smile
When you lose a tooth or have a tooth extraction, the jaw bone underneath soon begins to weaken and the surrounding teeth begin to shift. If the tooth is not replaced soon, the loss of jawbone density can put other teeth at risk. The surrounding teeth shift to fill in the space, leaving more spaces and gaps. Food can stick between teeth, making it harder to keep teeth clean. This increases your risk of gum disease and tooth decay.
Teeth support one another and share the work. With fewer teeth, the share for each tooth is greater. This increases the risk of chipped or cracked teeth.
For the health of your teeth and for your overall appearance, Dr. Marzban recommends replacing a missing tooth as soon as possible.
Dental implants may be the most impactful cosmetic dentistry procedure. In addition to causing further oral health problems, a visible missing tooth gap can actually influence the way other people see you. Even professionals and open-minded people make unconscious judgments based on appearance, and these judgments can negatively affect your social and professional life. If you are missing a tooth, Dr. Marzban and her caring, knowledgeable team will listen to your story and your concerns about how missing a tooth is affecting your life. We will help you fully understand your tooth replacement options so that you can feel confident in your decision.
Who Is a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?
There are several different tooth replacement options. Although you may not be a candidate for all of them, many people are and then must choose which option best meets their goals, expectations and budget.
Our implant dentist strongly believes in patient education and helping you choose treatments confidently, armed with the right information. Dental implants may be one of the best treatments for you if you:
- Are missing one or more teeth
- Have a jaw that has stopped growing
- Are healthy enough for surgery
- Want the most long-term way to replace your teeth
- Are interested in an alternative to a dental bridge or dentures
Although dental implants have certain advantages, there is no way to know whether they will be beneficial to you without visiting Dr. Marzban for an exam and consultation.
On the other hand, dental implants may not be best if you:
- Are a smoker
- Have gum disease
- Don’t have bone to support implants
Often, we can work around these limitations, but it may require additional procedures and/or changes to habits and oral hygiene practices.
Dental Implants Are a Permanent Tooth Replacement Solution
Because each smile has its own story and each person has a unique set of needs, we offer you a choice for tooth replacement: dental bridge or dental implant. A fixed dental bridge is an artificial replacement tooth (pontic) anchored to dental crowns on the adjacent teeth to hold it in place. Fixed dental bridges can be successful, but because they do not replace the root of the missing tooth, they do not solve the problem of jawbone deterioration.
Dental implants, on the other hand, are essentially a permanent tooth replacement system, and they come with other advantages. They prevent jawbone deterioration because the pontic is attached to an artificial tooth root that is actually bonded to the bone. Dental implants also do not increase your vulnerability to tooth decay as dentures sometimes can. If you are missing a tooth, Dr. Marzban has the advanced LVI training and digital smile design expertise to craft you a replacement tooth that is fully functional and blends aesthetically with the rest of your smile.
A dental implant is a surgical procedure, but there is no need to be intimidated. We are a friendly and empathetic team that values every person and understands that some people need a little help to feel at ease about undergoing dental procedures. We will take the time to educate you about the procedure and the results you can expect so that you can feel comfortable and confident about your dental implant procedure. We also offer multiple options to make your procedure more comfortable, including sedation dentistry and drug-free relaxation dentistry with NuCalm.
Want to Learn How Dental Implants Can Help You?
Hopefully, this basic information has helped you understand what makes dental implants such a great tooth replacement option. The only way to really learn if they are right for you is to schedule a consultation with an implant dentist. In Burke, VA, please call 703-323-8200 today for an appointment with Dr. Marzban.
Common Questions about Dental Implants:
A dental implant is a permanent, surgical solution to replace missing teeth. A dental implant is surgically placed into your jawbone to provide a strong, secure foundation for your missing tooth.
Dental implants offer several advantages over other forms of tooth replacement. Dental implants can be a permanent solution. They do not require support from adjacent teeth, which minimizes the impact to your natural teeth. Dental implants also serve to strengthen your jawbone, preventing issues such as jaw collapse that can accompany dentures.
Missing teeth are both a functional and aesthetic issue. Missing teeth may cause an awkward looking smile, which makes dental implants important cosmetic dentistry procedures. But the larger issue is what happens to the strength of your jaw and bite when a missing tooth is not replaced.
When you are missing a tooth, adjacent teeth will eventually slide into its place, altering the strength and alignment of your bite. This can lead to uneven tooth wear and more serious issues such as jaw collapse.
Dental implants are a good solution for most people. Ideal candidates should be in good general health, have sufficient jawbone density, and be prepared for the dental implant process. The process can take up to one year to complete. If you do not have sufficient jawbone density, Dr. Marzban can discuss bone grafting or alternative types of implants that may better meet your needs.
Dental implants are a safe and effective way to replace missing teeth. The surgical procedure has general risks such as infection and excessive bleeding. The implant itself may be rejected by your body. These instances are rare, and we take great care when placing your implant for the best odds of success. Carefully following all of Dr. Marzban’s post-implant advice will further help reduce any risks associated with this common procedure.