In the United States, an estimated 35 million Americans are missing one or both rows of their teeth. The average American adult between the ages of 20 and 64 is missing three permanent teeth.
We would understand if many people find that hard to believe, but those statistics are from the American College of Prosthodontists and the National Institutes of Health.
Tooth loss is far more common than many people realize. Part of the reason why is because tooth replacements have gotten so much better with the help of modern dentistry. (People you know probably have replacement teeth that you don’t know about.)
And dental implants are a big reason for that. Implants are the best replacements for the roots of your missing teeth. They make full-mouth reconstruction possible.
The Many Problems Of Missing Teeth
If you’ve lost all your teeth, you may feel embarrassed by what has happened. You might not have expected this, yet here you are feeling uncomfortable about smiling.
On a practical level, losing your teeth also can be frustrating. In a real sense, your teeth are where your digestive process starts. When you don’t have teeth, that limits the kinds of foods you can eat. Mashed potatoes are OK; steak may no longer be on the menu.
And no matter how much you like mashed potatoes, soup, and smoothies, eventually you will start to miss eating solid food.
We’ve also met some patients who felt nervous speaking since they lost their teeth. Talking may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about teeth, but they do affect your ability to make certain sounds and pronounce words correctly. Without teeth, you might think that you “talk funny,” and that can prevent some people from saying what they want to say.
One option could be to get dentures, but anyone with dentures can tell you that dentures are not the same as real teeth. Even if dentures look natural, they don’t allow you to eat whatever you want, and they can slip out at any time.
Fixing Problems With Dental Implants
Dental implants are the key to correcting all the problems mentioned above.
You CAN have a natural-looking smile.
You CAN eat anything you want again.
You CAN speak like you should, too.
And it all goes back to an accidental discovery by a Swedish physician while he was doing research on rabbits.
Dr. Per-Ingvar Brånemark had placed titanium cylinders into the leg bones of the rabbits as part of a study of blood circulation. Unexpectedly, he learned that bones would grow around and bond with titanium as if it too were bone.
This sent Dr. Brånemark in a different direction with his research, and in the 1960s, he had placed the first modern dental implants in a human patient.
Many people have built on his research to keep making implants better. Today, we can use implants to create a stable foundation to support a set of dentures. This makes dentures incredibly secure, so you won’t need to bother with messy denture adhesives.
This also makes dentures stronger. Research has shown that patients with implant-supported dentures can restore 90 percent (and more in some cases) of the biting power of a healthy person with a full set of teeth. Compare that to at best around 25 percent of your biting power with dentures alone.
And you can feel more comfortable speaking. That means you can tell that story about the funny thing your grandchildren did. That also means you can give that talk at your daughter’s wedding without worrying that your “teeth” might fall out.
Dental Implants Save Smiles, Too
If you are missing some but not all of your teeth, replacing the ones that are missing will make you more likely to keep the ones you still have.
Again, dental implants can play an essential role.
If you are missing multiple teeth, a few implants can be placed in your jaw to support a dental bridge. If you are missing a single tooth, an implant-supported crown can fill the hole in your smile.
Either way, you will have a replacement that looks and functions like real teeth.
Talk To Us To Find Out How To Get Dental Implants
If you are missing one tooth, all your teeth, or any number in between, we can help. We want to help.
With dental implants, we can do more than just give you back the appearance of your smile. Contact Galleria of Smiles online or call 918-245-5976 for an appointment at our dentist office in Sand Springs, OK.