Dental Implants: Why is it Important to Replace Missing Teeth?

Dental Implants: Why is it Important to Replace Missing Teeth?

Just one missing tooth can significantly impact your quality of life by making normal, everyday tasks such as biting, eating, and speaking more difficult, and in some cases, impossible. Traditional solutions relied heavily on goopy pastes and uncomfortable mechanisms that have proven ineffective at addressing the true issues that arise from tooth loss. However, modern dental technology has paved the way to an alternative for bridges and dentures: dental implants.

Dental Implants Are Great Tooth Replacement Option

Imagine being able to eat whatever you want, and speak and smile confidently again. Dental implants have quickly become the gold standard in tooth replacement because they give you the ability to do just that—and more. Not only are they a more long term solution to their traditional counterparts, but they address tooth loss at the source to reverse the effects toothlessness can have on your smile.

Reverse the Harmful Effects of Tooth Loss

By choosing dental implants, you are choosing to fight against the deterioration of your smile by countering the effects of tooth loss such as: bone loss that results in a sunken-in and aged appearance, further tooth loss, shifting teeth that may lead to a crooked or uneven bite, and failing teeth that are forced to take on more work. Dental implants are a tooth replacement solution designed to reverse these effects by promoting healthy, natural bone growth.

Exploring the Causes of Tooth Loss

Tooth loss is often caused by dental trauma, decay, or bone loss in the jaw. With bone loss, the jaw bone gradually loses density, which means the bone can no longer support the tooth by stabilizing its roots. The result is tooth loss. Without the natural stimulation of the missing tooth, the surrounding bone also begins to recede.

What if You Could Not Only Replace the Missing Tooth, But Reverse its Effects?

Dental implants are made up of three different components: a titanium “screw” that implants into the jaw bone to provide stability and natural bone stimulation, a dental crown that sits above the gum line, and an abutment to attach the pieces together. The result is a completely natural-looking and natural-feeling tooth replacement solution that promotes the re-growth of healthy jaw bone to support remaining surrounding teeth and maintain the health and aesthetics of your smile.

A Flexible Solution to Meet Your Tooth Replacement Needs

Whether you just lost a tooth, have been missing teeth for some time, or feel ready to make the switch from a temporary solution to a more permanent one, dental implants may be right for you. They are a flexible solution that can be used to replace as little as one tooth or as many as all of your teeth. Either way, your smile will look younger and you will feel better being able to take back control of your life. To learn more about the success of dental implants, contact Dr. Joseph Spina III today.

This is Essential When You Experience Tooth Loss

You might not expect it. But it happens.

Tooth loss!

Aside from oral trauma, the loss of a tooth or multiple teeth can set in motion a number of threats to your oral health. Delaying treatment enhances your impact risk.

One is all it takes

Depending on where your tooth loss occurs, your appearance is the first to suffer. Next is your tooth function.

One tooth might not affect your ability to eat or chew significantly. Yet the loss of more than one tooth will increase your functional challenges.

One missing tooth is one too many. Your teeth are designed to function as a unit in each arch (upper or lower) of your mouth.

Alignment, bone health, gum tissue health plus daily function are affected when a tooth gap exists.

The deeper issue

It’s not as much the loss of a tooth that causes long-term problems (there are solutions).Your problems mount when you delay tooth replacement (ignore solutions). Each tooth is more than what you see or utilize on the surface. Your tooth roots create stability within your jawbone and how each tooth aligns above your gum line.

Teeth that shift will weaken each root. Weakened tooth roots will begin to impact the health of your bone and gum tissue.

A solution to consider

Since tooth roots are a significant part of your tooth’s anatomy wouldn’t it make sense to replace them at the “root level?” A dental implant does that.

Implants from root to tip provide a secure, natural-looking, and naturally functioning new tooth. A dental implant:

Restores your tooth function and appearance

Adapts to your bone and gum tissue

Preserves the health of your jawbone and gums

Remains stable and will not shift or move

Tooth loss happens

It helps to be aware of the impact…and how to restore it when it does.Contact our Wayne dental office about your missing tooth or missing teeth. Schedule an examination to diagnose your tooth loss condition and discuss your tooth replacement options including dental implants.

Why a Full Mouth Restoration Could be the Answer to Your Dental Issues

The damage starts somewhere. It’s often the result of a single missing or damaged tooth.

The problem with dental problems? They can worsen without necessary treatment.

Restorative dentistry and cosmetic dentistry provide you a duo of solutions that can stop the progression of damage.

Stop your mouth from “unraveling”

A full mouth restoration uses a combination of restorative and cosmetic procedures to improve your health and your appearance. Your teeth and gums will return to their proper, healthy function.

One damaged, broken, or missing tooth can unravel a number of oral health problems. Your symptoms can include issues with biting, chewing, tooth wear, and pain in your jaw, head, or neck.

Dental trauma is a common cause that sets issues in motion. Neglecting your dental health can also increase your need for more extensive treatment.

A full mouth restoration can help if you’ve experienced any or a combination of the following:

Worn, broken, or chipped teeth

Missing teeth

Chronic pain in your jaw, head, or neck

Treatment with a full-mouth restoration can eliminate the risks associated with these and more.

The benefit of dental “teamwork”

An oral examination is the best place to start. This initial step will diagnose your dental health and determine the combination of treatment that will restore your tooth function and appearance.

Full mouth restoration can include a combination of procedures such as:

Dental crowns, tooth-colored fillings, and dental inlays and onlays for treating tooth decay

Dental implants, an implant supported denture, or a dental bridge to replace your missing tooth or teeth

Root canal therapy to save your tooth and treat and remove infection

Orthodontics to align your bite

Veneers, dental bonding, or teeth whitening to improve the appearance of your teeth

A night guard to stop tooth wear and protect your dental treatment

Your full mouth restoration requires multiple appointments to complete. Each procedure requires a period of healing prior to the next phase of treatment.

Contact our Wayne dental office about your missing, damaged, or decayed teeth. Schedule a dental examination to discuss restorative and cosmetic dental treatment with a full mouth restoration.

Why It Matters to Compare a Dental Implant and a Dental Bridge

It’s important to weigh-your-options. You have a choice when considering a missing tooth replacement.

Your solutions often come down to two. For example, dental implants or a dental bridge.

Each tooth replacement option is effective. And each has their advantages.

Before you decide

Let’s explore the primary issue associated with losing a tooth or teeth. The longer you delay filling your missing tooth gap the greater your risk of bone loss in your jaw.

Tooth loss and bone loss affects your surrounding teeth and your gums. Alignment and ongoing deterioration can have long-term impact on your oral health.

A dental bridge is an effective tooth replacement. But it’s limited in preserving your bone and tissue health.

Dental implants on the other hand have a substantial impact on preserving your bone tissue. An implant forms a new tooth root that your gum and bone tissue adapts to following placement.

It’s vital that you not further complicate your oral health by choosing a tooth replacement that might not be as effective given your missing tooth circumstances.

Know your advantages

Your teeth support each other. Tooth roots form the foundation that keeps each tooth secure.

Dental implants are unique. The new tooth root created by the implant secures your functional new tooth (dental crown) on the surface.

Dental implants preserve your bone tissue. This helps prevent damage to your surrounding teeth and additional and more costly dental procedures.

Dental implants are made to last. Your implant has a 95% success rate as a restorative dental treatment and can last longer than a dental bridge.

Compare your available treatments when you’ve experienced tooth loss. Contact your Wayne dentist about the important comparison between a dental implant and a dental bridge.

Schedule a dental examination to discuss your best tooth replacement solution.

Does Your Dental Implant Treatment Need a “Lift?”

Some things require a “team-effort.” For example, dental implant treatment relies on a supportive environment from top to bottom to be successful and long-term effective.

One factor that impacts your procedure involves your sinus cavity. It depends on the structure of your anatomy in the upper quadrant of your mouth.

The roots of your upper molars can be located too close to your sinus area. If this is the case, you will experience an opening into the sinus cavity following the loss of an upper molar.

This would also cause a problem for the implant post being placed in that location.

Your all-around health

Your dental implant (wherever it’s located) requires healthy bone tissue. The bone near your sinus is thin and is therefore not adequate to support an implant.

When replacing a missing upper molar the lower sinus area will need to be lifted or augmented. A sinus lift makes it possible for your new tooth structure to be placed.

About your lift

A sinus lift will add thickness to your bone structure. It’s common on occasion to experience some congestion following the procedure.

Your congestion will clear up during the healing procedure. Once healed you will have normal breathing function, voice clarity, and no additional complications to any allergies you might have.

A sinus lift procedure ultimately improves the success of your implant treatment and allows you to enjoy solid, restored tooth function with a dental implant.

Contact your Wayne dentist about dental implant treatment. Schedule an examination to access the health of your bone tissue to prepare for a successful procedure.

When a Plan B is Necessary for Your Dental Implant Procedure

You’ve heard that dental implants are a secure, long-lasting tooth replacement. You’re ready

to proceed but…there’s one problem!

It has to do with a primary aspect of your implant treatment.

Your jawbone.

Reasons could include gum disease, bone loss, or other related issues. Bottom line, a dental

implant requires adequate bone to securely anchor it.

No worries. There’s a Plan B.

A bone graft can be used to add supportive bone to your jaw. The bone tissue that’s used

adapts and attaches to your jawbone forming a solid location for your implant.

You can use that?

What’s ironic is where the bone tissue can be found and what the procedure accomplishes.

Bone can be used from a number of locations in your own body.

Your chin or another back portion of your lower jaw are often sources of bone tissue for a

graft. If you cannot personally contribute bone or choose not to do so, bone can be taken

from a human cadaver, cows, and in some instances we can use synthetic resources.

What to expect

Your bone grafting procedure can be done in our dental office using local anesthesia for

single tooth implants. Multiple implants and the use of a larger amount of bone tissue for

the graft can require an off-site procedure.

We will help assure your comfort during the procedure. Bone will be extracted from the

designated location (chin or jaw) and secured into the location where bone tissue is needed

for your dental implant.

Some important details

It is essential that your bone graft area be allowed to fuse with your available tissue. This

healing period of approximately six months prior to implant placement will also improve the

success of your dental implant.

Pain medication can be prescribed to you following the procedure. An antibacterial solution

such as a mouthwash also helps assure the area heals properly.

Contact our Wayne dental office about dental implant treatment for your tooth loss.

Schedule an examination to ask questions about the implant procedure and determine the

health of your bone tissue.

A Sign That Something’s-Up With Your Dental Implant

You’ve invested time and dollars in your dental implant treatment. It’s delivered everything you had hoped.


You have a strong, secure, fully functioning new tooth. And you’re equally pleased that your implant isn’t directly vulnerable to decay or disease.

Then one day…

You notice some inflammation around the site of your implant. It’s inflamed enough to get your attention and signal that something isn’t quite right.

First, it’s important that you noticed. Second, it has less to do with your dental implant and perhaps more to do with your natural gum tissue that surrounds it.

Implant infection treatment is your next best step. This procedure helps eliminate the risk of damage to your dental implant and surrounding gum and bone tissue.

An oral infection where your implant is located can lead to more serious dental health issues.

So, why is there an infection?

Food is the common culprit. For example, popcorn kernels and foods containing small seeds can become impacted (lodged) between you implant crown and your gum tissue.

Simple neglect or lack of awareness trigger the gradual progress towards inflammation. If you ignore the inflamed area long enough an infection will occur.

Remember, your dental implant resists infection and decay. Your gums and bone tissue do not.

Plaque and tartar can form beneath the surface edges of your dental crown and your implant. That’s somewhat harmless until the bacteria within the tartar attacks your vulnerable gum tissue.

Oral bacteria are aggressive. They will produce an infection if they are not removed.

Implant infection treatment focuses on the tissue that holds your dental implant. Your gums are cleaned, treated, and disinfected to eliminate the infection.

The procedure also checks for any bone tissue damage. This helps keep your jawbone healthy and your implant secure.

Contact our Wayne dental office about dental implant treatment. Schedule a dental examination if you are experiencing any gum inflammation.

A Common Question About Dental Implant Treatment

Next to the treatment itself, it’s perhaps the most common question about dental implants. In a way, the answer increases the treatment’s credibility.

The question: “How long does it take for implants to heal?”

Healing duration indicates yet another plus of dental implants. Implant treatment is more than a cosmetic tweak for your missing or damaged teeth.

The healing period following implant placement will vary. The reason is a key to your implant’s overall effectiveness.

Your bone health will primarily determine the speed and quality of your post-placement healing. Also, factor in any required supportive procedures such as a bone graft.

Two to four months is the typical healing period. During this time your bone tissue is adapting to the implant.

Your bone tissue will heal according to that time frame if you follow post-treatment instructions. The main recommendation is to avoid forceful biting on the treated area.

We are learning more about how your bone tissue adapts to the titanium post (implant). Improving the healing time frame is the goal but generally you should expect the two to four month span to be most effective.

Treat it like a new tooth from root to tip

Your tooth function is restored from top to bottom with a dental implant. The surface portion (crown) will naturally get the most attention post healing.

The dental crown is secured to the top of your implant. This forms the new functional tooth.

It’s essential that you care for your dental implant. Its connection to your bone, gums, and surrounding teeth give you reason to do so as you would your natural teeth.

Your implant will not be vulnerable to cavities since it’s a prosthetic tooth structure. But you will be susceptible to gum inflammation.

Improper care of your dental implant and the surrounding tissue can cause problems. Gum inflammation can lead to an infection and eventually, bone loss if you avoid proper treatment.

Periodontal disease affects your gums. In the same way, a condition known as peri-implantitis can occur in the tissue surrounding your dental implant.

This makes it all-important that you stay consistent with at-home dental care. Brush and floss the areas around your dental implant to maintain healthy tissue.

Also, stay consistent with your routine check-ups, x-rays, and teeth cleanings. We will observe the health of your implant and provide you with techniques for keeping it clean and healthy.

The healing period following implant placement is short by comparison to the lifetime of function you enjoy.

Contact our Wayne dental office about dental implant treatment. Schedule a consultation to discuss your tooth replacement options.

Comparisons That Could Save You Dental Treatment Costs

For the most part, it’s a good idea to think ahead. Forward thinking keeps you aware.

Awareness can save you costs on your dental treatment too. With that in mind, it’s always a good time to review your dental insurance benefits and evaluate how much of yours remain before the end of the year.

Cost-savings and cost-effective thinking

I talk a lot about dental implants on this blog. The reasons vary but primarily it’s about two.

1-Dental implants are a superior treatment.

They are superior, in essence, to dental bridges or dentures. Though your dental implant costs are higher, the long-term benefits can equal savings for you and your family.

Dental implant treatment has a confirmed high success rate over other tooth replacement options. The primary reasons include the fact that dental implants do not negatively impact the health of your adjacent teeth like dental bridges, for example.

Bone tissue health is supported with dental implant treatment as well. Your bone tissue can continue to deteriorate over time with denture treatment, another popular tooth replacement solution.

2-Dental implants are cost-effective.

Your dental cost considerations should include how much additional treatment you will require over time. For example, if your tooth-supported dental bridge fails it will typically cost more long-term due to required additional treatment.

A bridge replacement also involves preparation. This can involve removal of your tooth structure and other related fees for treatment.

An implant-supported crown doesn’t compromise adjoining teeth. Thus, you can avoid additional treatment costs with this implant based procedure.

Talk of costs and long-term investment is a good reminder to carefully review your insurance benefits. Consider how much less out-of-pocket expense you would have if your current benefits are substantial enough to begin effective long-term treatment you’ve been postponing.

Ask our front office business team about how your remaining annual insurance benefits can supplement your treatment costs. If you’ve been delaying tooth replacement remember that timing is essential to preserving your bone tissue and your adjoining teeth.

Dental implant treatment could be more possible than you’ve thought. Now is a good time to think ahead and explore your options for long-term, cost-effective treatment for missing tooth replacement.

Implant Dentistry 101

Conversations jump topics frequently. Maybe it’s because attention spans are tested these days.

Information flows freely. That’s a good thing but it can make you pause and wonder, “Now what was it you were saying about…?”

That said dental implants are a dominant theme on this blog. I cover a variety of related topics here.

It’s important that you understand all the so called ins-and-outs, or 101-level information about implant treatment. Having covered some of those corollary topics, let’s return to the basics for a moment.

Fill in the gaps

A discussion about dental implants typically begins with a missing tooth or teeth. Losing a tooth triggers a series of emotions, panic for starters.

But once the panic subsides, it’s easy to become accustomed to the space left behind. But ignoring tooth loss is where your problems begin.

A missing tooth or teeth affects more than your smile or the embarrassment that you might feel as result. Tooth loss impacts your lifestyle.

The most noticeable areas are speaking and chewing. And the challenge remains until you learn to compromise and alternate your routine.

Your teeth begin to shift and move not long after tooth loss. The damage caused by shifting teeth is a priority concern.

Also, plaque often hides in your missing tooth gaps. This increases the potential for tooth decay to take hold and lead to other dental treatment or worse, gum disease.

Stop it before it starts

You have options for tooth replacement. Implant dentistry is popular for restoring your natural tooth function.

Unlike implants, dentures sit on top of your gums. A dental bridge depends on the anchoring support of your adjacent teeth.

The implant integrates with your jawbone and gum tissue to prohibit tooth movement and further damage to your gum and bone tissue. Dental implants look and function as your natural teeth.

A solution that lasts

Implants can replace a single tooth or several teeth. Dental implants are also a common support for securing a dental bridge or implant-supported dentures.

Implant treatment is a more permanent solution than dentures, partial dentures, or dental bridges. Your cost comparison should consider the long-term effectiveness of dental implants over other tooth replacement solutions.

What to expect

Your dental implants treatment can most often be completed in two to three phases. Keep in mind that your implant treatment is an oral surgery procedure using local anesthesia and/or sedation dentistry (if you choose).

Phase one: involves the actual placement of your titanium implant within your jawbone. Your gum tissue is placed over your dental implant to begin the initial healing process.

This allows your new implant to fuse to your bone (osseointegration). The osseointegration period usually lasts three to six months as healing occurs.

Phase two and three: your post is placed within your dental implant. This extends above your gum line and creates the location for your new, visible tooth.

A dental crown will be placed on the post once your gum tissue has healed. The crown, post (abutment), and implant fill the missing tooth gap and give you a secure, functional new tooth.

There are many questions and considerations for dental implant treatment. Cover the basics of implant dentistry with a consultation in our Wayne dental office.