The impact of tooth loss when left untreated
Losing a tooth during childhood is often a sign that the baby teeth are becoming redundant and the permanent adult teeth are taking their place. Therefore when a permanent tooth is damaged or knocked out as an adult, it is understood that the tooth will not return naturally and therefore a dental appointment needs to be made. Unfortunately, due to nerves or the business of daily life, the dental appointment can get delayed and therefore the consequences of the tooth loss begin to develop further. Surrounding teeth may shift and lean towards the gap, further tooth loss may occur as the bone begins to recede where the missing tooth was and in worst case scenarios the facial definition may alter as the bone begins to recede. Whilst this may all sound extremely dramatic and far-fetched, all of these things can be the result of tooth loss and impact on a patient.
Luckily, with modern dentistry continuing to develop, tooth loss can be easily fixed with a range of options including a dental implant Melbourne and in many cases this is a fairly straightforward process.
Where to begin
The first thing to do when suffering from the loss of a tooth or multiple teeth is to inform your dental practice. This is of extreme importance as it gets the ball rolling. From there a variety of options will open up to you and it may be that implants catch your attention.
What are they?
Tooth implants are small titanium screws or posts that are inserted into your jawbone. Once they are drilled into place and as the area heals, the surrounding jawbone will regenerate around the screw securing it into place. This then acts as a sturdy base for a replenished or restored tooth.
Potential suitability problems
In some cases it may be that the dental implant option is not suited to your individual case. This can occur for a variety of reasons including insufficient bone depth within the jawbone or poor oral hygiene.
For those with insufficient depth to their jawbone this does not mean that the procedure is off limits, but may mean that before it can occur a bone graft needs to be carried out. This could mean that a section of the cheekbone is taken and placed within the jaw. Once sufficient healing has taken place the implant can then be secured and a new tooth or multiple teeth added to the patient’s smile.
When poor oral hygiene is apparent it may mean that this particular procedure would be less suitable for your individual needs. This can be for a variety of reasons, but most importantly it is due to the length of time the implant would last. These small titanium posts are considered to be a long-term solution to tooth loss, lasting as long as 20-30 years when the oral hygiene process is kept at a high standard. For those with poor oral hygiene this would be greatly reduced and therefore other tooth loss solutions would be more efficacious.
Disclaimer: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.