If you have one or more missing teeth, you've likely thought of getting dental implants. A tooth implant is put into your jaw bone via a special tool that drills a hole in your jaw before placing a setting for a porcelain cap to fill the space. The final result is a realistic-looking tooth that is as fixed to your mouth as your natural teeth are that will last for several years with regular dental care. If you have a healthy smile overall, including a viable jaw bone for implants and healthy gums, your dental implants can last a long time.
Implants require healthy gums in order to be successful, and with nearly half of American adults suffering from some form of gum disease, it's important that you double-check your gums to ensure they are healthy. Learn why healthy gums matter when getting dental implants.
Bad gums can mean bad jaw bone
Severe gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, can spread to the whole mouth. If it does, the jaw bone is compromised and can actually start to deteriorate. Since you need a healthy jaw bone in order to safely and effectively put in dental implants, you want to manage your gum disease if you already have it.
Unsure if you have gum disease? Your dentist can tell based on a quick exam if this is a problem. If you do have periodontal disease, you'll need special cleanings and oral care treatments done to help build up healthy gum tissue before you get dental implants put in.
Bad gums can mean more tooth loss
If you have unhealthy gums, you're at a greater risk of tooth loss than someone who has healthy gums because periodontitis is the leading cause of missing teeth. If you are only getting a few implants, then having healthy gums is a must because you don't want to put your remaining teeth at risk of more dental implants being needed. Viable gums help you keep your remaining teeth healthier and better rooted so you can focus on only getting implants in the areas of most concern for now.
Keep this in mind as well: anywhere you have a missing tooth where there is no replacement tooth or a tooth implant put in, your jaw bone in that area is at risk of premature deterioration. Healthy gums help you have a healthy smile.
To learn more, contact a dentist about dental implants.
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