Each year millions of Americans suffer from tooth loss due to decay, periodontal disease, or injury. Traditionally patients were given two options to replace missing teeth – bridges or dentures. However, in recent years, the option of dental implants has become more appealing to many due to their many advantages including improved appearance, speech, comfort, self-esteem, and eating capabilities.
So what exactly are dental implants? Here are 5 facts about dental implants courtesy of the American Academy of Implant Dentistry:
- Ancient dental implants have been traced back to around 600 AD when tooth-like pieces of shell were hammered into the jaw of a Mayan woman.
- Dental implants are the only dental restoration option that preserves natural bone, actually helping to stimulate bone growth.
- In 1951, a small group of dentists who were successfully placing dental implants formed the AAID – American Academy of Implant Dentistry – to share their knowledge on the practice of implantology. AAID is the first professional organization in the world dedicated to advancing implant dentistry.
- In 1952, Swedish orthopedic surgeon P.I. Branemark discovered that titanium naturally fuses with the bone, eventually switching his research focus to the mouth from the knee and hip.
- 3 million people in the United States have implants, a number that is growing by 500,000 annually.
As a permanent solution for missing teeth, dental implants are designed to last a lifetime. And while they do involve a surgical procedure, for the most part, you will not feel pain during the implantation process. Following the implantation, it is normal to have minor discomfort and swelling that is usually easy to manage with over-the-counter medications. There may also be some gum tenderness but that usually subsides within a few days.
The recovery process for dental implants varies from person-to-person. Most people are able to return to work or their daily life the day following the procedure. It is usually 3 to 6 months before the jawbone is stable enough to withstand adding the necessary dental crown.
At Jackson Dental we are proud to offer dental implants at an affordable price. If you think dental implants might be right for you, we encourage you to call today to schedule a free consultation with our experienced doctors to explore your options and get an accurate cost.