The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that about 4 percent of adults have no teeth at all, and another 15 million in the United States have crowns or bridges to cover missing teeth. One of the increasing alternatives to bridges, crowns, and dentures is dental implants, with 500,000 new patients seeking implants for tooth replacement every year. Our teeth do a lot for us, so if you’re uncomfortable with tooth loss, here are four reasons to consider getting your smile back with dental implants.
You’re uncomfortable with the look of your smile.
About one in three of us are concerned by the look of our teeth, and this can result in lower self confidence. You may even find that you’re smiling less because you’re self conscious about your teeth. Dental implants to replace degrading or missing teeth can give you the full set of pearly whites you’ve always wanted and allows you to smile with confidence.
You’re having trouble eating or speaking.
Teeth aren’t just for smiling–they allow us to eat and to speak clearly. If a missing tooth or missing teeth are making it hard for you to chew, or if you’re self conscious about a whistle or lisp resulting, a tooth implant can make a significant difference.
You’re experiencing jaw pain.
When we lose teeth, the jaw can shift over time to allow remaining teeth to fill in the gaps. This can result in an awkward and painful bite. If you’re also experiencing chronic headaches, a shifting jaw as a result of tooth loss can be the culprit.
You don’t want dentures.
Removable dentures can be a good option for some, but they require adhesives to stay in place and need to be removed at night. They’re also not generally designed to account for a few gaps in the teeth. Dental implants, by contrast, are permanent. Once they’re in place, you’ll be able to forget they’re there.
Be sure to talk to your dentist about working with a trusted oral surgeon. Dental implants have a success rate of almost 100%, but you’ll want to make sure that you’re fully prepared to make the change.