A dental implant is a small metal or titanium rod that is screwed into the jaw bone and then capped with a crown. The dental implant is used to replace a tooth or teeth that have been lost due to damage or decay. Dental implants prevent teeth on either side of an opening from shifting away from other teeth that are nearby. When implants are used, they act as a barrier that the other teeth can butt up against, holding them in place and maintaining the mouth’s original alignment. Dental implants are often put in as soon as the root of the other tooth is removed to ensure the other teeth remain in place.
The metal post that is implanted into the jaw is set directly into the bone. This allows the bone to grow around it, holding it firmly in place. Dental implants are designed to be permanent because of how they are anchored deeply into the jaw bone. Once the jaw has grown around the post it is extremely difficult to remove and may cause damage to the bone if an attempt is made to extract it. Dental implants are used in situations where permanency is the expected result. When implants are used to replace one or two teeth, it is easy to use implants to replace the rest of the teeth to create an entire denture that snaps into place over the existing posts.
Many people are choosing the implant method over conventional dentures. Part of the reason for this is that the fit of the denture will never change. They no longer rely on the suction between the gum and the denture. When implants are put in place, the denture snaps firmly to the implant and will remain in place until they are removed. Dentures made with implants create a solid seal that prevents food and other debris from working down underneath the plate and causing discomfort. Implants are also ideal for use with partial plates. When implants are used, there is no need for anchor wires that wrap around neighboring teeth.