How to fix your missing teeth with dental implants

Most people do not want gaps in their smiles. Spaces make us self-conscious, and they cause others to make often unfair assumptions about our health, hygiene, lifestyle habits . . . even intellect and finances. Do you want to fix your missing teeth? Dr. Theodore Siegel and his team at Big Smile Dental in Chicago, IL can help, with dental implants.

How do missing teeth happen?

Some of the causes of missing teeth could surprise you:

  • Hypodontia – While it can show up in any ethnic group, up to 35 percent of the population with European ancestry never get wisdom teeth. Three percent are congenitally missing premolars, and upper lateral incisors don’t come in for about two percent. Hypodontia is more common in women than men. If six or more permanent teeth are missing, the condition is known as oligodontia, and as anodontia when no natural teeth are present.
  • Trauma – This is the situation most people think of with regard to losing a tooth. An elbow on the basketball court, a line drive at the plate, a stick, a puck, a fall on winter ice, or a vehicle accident can certainly knock a tooth out or damage it beyond repair. Yet teeth are also lost as a result of latent trauma. A tooth may develop symptoms – aching, discoloration, or abscess – months or even years after an injury. If the tooth is not a good candidate for root canal treatment, extraction may be necessary.
  • Decay – A cavity is no big deal, right? You just get a filling. While that is often true, untreated decay can compromise a tooth to the point that there is not enough structure to support a filling or crown.
  • Gum disease – Your mouth is a complex symbiosis. Soft tissues, ligaments, and bone are needed to support teeth, and teeth are necessary to maintain strong bone. Periodontal disease breaks this healthy cycle. It has become the primary cause of tooth loss in adults in this country.
  • Extraction – Orthodontics is changing, but at one time, extraction was a common solution for crowding. A young patient might have as many as eight teeth removed in preparation for braces. In some cases, that created gaps after straightening.

Fix your missing teeth with dental implants in Chicago, IL

If you are missing teeth, you are fortunate to be living in the 21st century. Never before have patients had more treatment choices. There is an option to fit most oral health, medical, lifestyle, and budget considerations.

denture can be a good choice for those whose primary concern is initial outlay, or who need tooth replacement as quickly as possible. A removable partial denture holds one or several artificial teeth in a framework that clips to existing teeth. A full denture replaces all teeth in an arch. Conventional dentures are held in place through fit, natural suction, and sometimes adhesive paste. Implant-retained dentures add a significant level of stability. Keep reading for more on this beneficial option.

A dental bridge is fabricated of ceramic or a metal frame covered with porcelain. It has crowns that fit over prepared teeth (or dental implants) at either end of the gap in your smile. The crowns support one or multiple artificial teeth. A bridge sits on top of gum tissue, but it is fixed in place.

Dental implants may sound like a new trend in dentistry, but they have been in use in this country since the early 1980s. Thus, the long-term success rate is well-documented, making dental implants cost-effective over the patient’s lifetime. A dental implant may be used as a replacement solution for a single missing tooth, missing teeth at multiple locations in the mouth, or even a whole upper or lower arch. For a span of consecutive missing teeth, implants anchor a dental bridge – no healthy teeth have to be reduced for crowns. As few as four dental implants can be placed to support a full denture.

Since an implant replaces the root of a missing tooth, it becomes part of your body. Implants are the only tooth replacement option that provides support for back teeth and helps to preserve jawbone, for a more youthful facial appearance.

Are dental implants the right choice for you? Schedule a consultation at Big Smile Dental to find out. The number is 773-772-8400.

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