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Woman smiling with a dental implant graphic showing

Dental implants are a safe and effective way to replace missing teeth. Nearly 19% of adults aged 65 and over were edentulous in 2010, which is only expected to grow as the population ages. Missing teeth can lead to several oral health problems, including difficulty eating and speaking, bone loss, and gum disease.

What are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are a type of dental prosthetic used to replace missing teeth. They are made up of three main components: the implant, which is a small titanium screw that is placed into the jawbone; the abutment, which connects the implant post and the restoration and the crown, which is an artificial tooth that is placed on top of the implant.

Dental implants offer many benefits over other types of dental prosthetics, such as dentures or bridges. They are more stable and secure, allowing you to eat and speak without worry. They also help preserve the bone in your jaw, preventing facial sagging and wrinkles.

Dental implants can last a lifetime with proper care and provide a natural-looking and feeling solution for tooth loss.

How Are Dental Implants Evaluated for Safety?

The FDA considers several factors when assessing the safety of dental implants, including their intended use, design, manufacturing process, and labeling. Dental implants are also subject to post-market surveillance, which helps to monitor their safety and effectiveness once they are on the market.

The FDA has issued several guidance documents on dental implants, which provide information on their safety and proper use.

Risks of Dental Implants

While complications are rare in dental implants, several conditions can increase the risk of complications, such as diabetes and smoking.

  • Infection. The implant site is a surgical wound; like any other wound, it is susceptible to infection. If the implant becomes infected, it will need to be removed, and the infection will need to be treated before a new implant can be placed.
  • Nerve Damage. The nerves in the jaw can be damaged during the implant placement surgery, which can lead to numbness or tingling in the lips, gums, or chin. In some cases, the nerve damage may be permanent.
  • Sinus Problems. The implants can interfere with the sinuses, leading to congestion, headaches, and facial pain. In some cases, the sinuses may need to be surgically corrected to alleviate these symptoms.
  • Implant Rejection. Implant rejection occurs when the body perceives the implant as a foreign object and attacks it. It typically occurs within the first few months after surgery and can lead to implant failure.

The Dental Implant Success Rate

Dental implants are one of the most trusted and safe ways to replace a tooth or teeth. The success rate for dental implants is very high, with over 98% of cases resulting in a successful implant.

Find Out if Dental Implants Are Right for You

If you’re considering dental implants, the first step is to book a consultation with a dental professional.

During the consultation, the dentist will assess your mouth and jawbone to determine if you’re a good candidate for dental implants. They will also discuss the various types of implants available and help you choose the best option for your needs.

The next step is to have the implant surgically placed in your jawbone. Once the implant has healed, you will return to the office to have the abutment placed. This minor surgery takes about two weeks to heal before you can have the tooth (or teeth) attached to the implant.

Call us at (219) 232-8956 to schedule a consultation at St John Smiles and find out if dental implants are the right option for restoring your smile.

Be proud of your smile.