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Health

What are dental implants used for?

Tooth loss

Tooth loss is a common and very distressing dental condition and can involve the loss of one or more teeth. There are many different potential causes of tooth loss, however the most common ones are traumatic dental injuries, advanced tooth decay and gum disease. The latter two conditions are caused by similar factors: in the oral cavity, a diverse range of bacterial species are present. Some of these species feed on the remaining sugar found in the oral cavity after a meal. As Western diets are high in sugar, this provides the perfect niche for these bacteria to multiply. Bacterial overgrowth can increase the rate at which the acids contributing to tooth decay are produced, which can result in tooth decay. Bacterial overgrowth can also stimulate the immune system and lead to inflammation. Chronic inflammation can damage the gingiva structurally, which can lead to potential tooth loss if the condition is left untreated. To protect yourself from tooth loss, ensure that you wear a mouthguard when engaging in contact sports or dangerous work, brush your twice at least twice a day, use dental floss and use an antibacterial mouthwash as well. If you would like to get dental implants Leicester, contact a reputable dental practice for an appointment to discuss your options.

How do dental implants work?

Dental implants are small appliances, which are surgically inserted into the jawbone. These appliances appear similar to an everyday screw, however they are not as simple as they appear. The implants are made out of a metal with special properties: titanium. This metal is commonly used to make implants, as unlike other metals, titanium is recognised by the immune system as if the body’s own tissue, thus it is less likely to be rejected by the body. As it was mentioned above, a surgical procedure is used to insert the implants into the jawbone. Here the implants integrate into the bone and the other surrounding tissues through a process, which is called osseointegration. This ensures that the implant is fixed into the gap of the lost tooth just as strongly as if it was the root of a natural tooth. Once this process is complete, artificial teeth are manufactured and they are placed on top of the implants by your dentist.

How does the surgery work?

Getting a dental implant is usually not considered to  be a particularly painful procedure. You can choose to undergo the surgery with sedation, however the local anaesthetics used by dentists are also perfect at alleviating the potential pain. During sedation with the aid of some sedative drugs you enter into a dream-like state with a strongly reduced sensation of pain. These drugs can be administered orally, intravenously and even in the form of a gas as well. As with every surgical procedure, there are some risks associated with surgery involving dental implants as well, however these are normally minor and the overwhelming majority of dental implantations are successful and free of complications. The replacement of missing teeth improves the quality of life for recipients in many ways and is a worthwhile investment in oral health.

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