If you have advanced gum disease and you're losing your teeth, you may be concerned about what your future holds. A loss of teeth can have a big impact on your appearance, so you'll want to find a way to replace your teeth and improve the health of your gums so you don't lose all of your teeth. One solution for replacing teeth that are already lost is the dental implant. Here's how dental implants can help when you're restoring your mouth after gum disease.
Dental Implants Replace Your Missing Teeth
If you have some healthy teeth that can be saved, then you might just need one or two implants with each one supporting a single tooth. If you've lost several teeth, or if the dentist needs to pull your teeth, then dentures with implants could be the best option. With implant dentures, a few implants support an entire dental plate rather than individual crowns. Implants give you the next best thing to having your natural teeth since the teeth look natural and the implants hold them securely to your jaw bone.
Gum Disease Must Be Treated First
Before you get implants, it's important to clear up your gum disease first or an infection might develop around an implant and cause it to fail. The treatment you need will vary depending on the condition of your teeth and gums. Your dentist may need to clear out infected material under the gums. You might need gum grafts or even a bone graft. Once your gum disease has healed and the health of your mouth has been restored, the dentist may consider putting in implants to restore the appearance of your smile.
Grafts May Be Necessary
Even if your gum disease has cleared up, the implant dentist may decide you need a bone graft or gum graft for the sake of holding an implant more securely. While the need for grafts can lengthen the process of getting your dental implants, your dentist can probably find a way to put in a temporary solution until your bone and gums are healed from the grafts. It might be a partial or full denture plate that improves the appearance of your smile while you wait until the permanent crown or denture can be anchored to your bone.
If you're struggling with gum disease or you've had gum disease and now have missing teeth, talk to an implant dentist about your options. The first step will probably be to have a CT scan done of your jaw to determine the size of the bone and where implants will be necessary to restore your smile. Each person is different, so you won't know if you need grafts or even if implants are right for you until you talk to an implant dentist.