Permanent Teeth Replacement with Dental Implants

Millions of Americans suffer some form of tooth loss, whether it’s due to decay, disease or injury. Years ago, these individuals were forced to settle with bridges and dentures to repair their smile. Today, dental implants provide a long-term solution that can fit the needs of any person. Here are just a few of the many benefits dental implants offer to potential patients.

Just Like the Real Thing

Dental implants are the best substitute for natural teeth because they look, feel and function just like natural teeth. Traditional dental bridges will only last several years, even with the best of care and maintenance. While dental implants may need to be periodically adjusted by a dental professional, with proper placement and care they can last an entire lifetime. Your implants are guaranteed to stay strong whether you need a single tooth or even multiple teeth replaced.

With such life-like replacements, you can enjoy your implants without hesitation. Dental implants allow for easy, natural speech as well as the ability to eat and drink virtually anything. Unlike traditional dentures, you won’t have to sacrifice function for appearance.

Protect Your Natural Teeth

After losing one or more of your teeth, the empty spaces in your jawbones can eventually lead to even more health complications. A face without teeth can sag and become sunken as the exposed jawbone starts to deteriorate. Dental implants help prevent this deterioration by mimicking the function of a tooth’s root, preventing bone loss.

Implants are also better for your remaining teeth than other replacement options. Placing a dental bridge to replace a missing tooth requires grinding away the adjacent healthy teeth. These weakened teeth are then expected to fully support the bridge. Dental implants are anchored to your jaw, like a natural tooth would be, ensuring they hold strong without impacting surrounding teeth or bone.

No Extra Maintenance

Because dental implants act like natural teeth, they can be treated like natural teeth. There’s no need to take them out each night or use a special cleaner to keep your implants looking bright. Simply brush, floss and care for your teeth as you normally would. Implants allow you to keep your beautiful smile for no extra effort or unnecessary maintenance costs.

Dental Implants in Louisville

If you’re missing one or more teeth, dental implants might be the perfect solution to restore your natural smile. The implant dentistry experts at Greater Louisville Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Associates can help you create a customized treatment plan for your dental needs. Contact us today for more information or to schedule a comprehensive dental evaluation.

Why Do We Have Wisdom Teeth and What Situations Warrant Their Removal?

Wisdom teeth – the third molars located in the very back of your mouth – are the last of all teeth to emerge through the gum line, and typically come in between the ages of 17 and 25 when people are entering adulthood and thought to be growing wiser (hence the name “wisdom teeth”).

While many dental professionals recommend having your wisdom teeth removed as soon as they come in just to prevent complications down the road, it’s not always necessary. In fact, one study found that of the estimated 10 million wisdom teeth removed from five million people each year, as many as 60 percent did not actually need to be removed.

If you believe or have been told you should have your wisdom teeth pulled, it’s important to understand why we have these teeth in the first place as well as the various problems/circumstances that may require their removal. Here’s a brief overview of what you need to know.

What’s the Purpose of Wisdom Teeth?

By the time they reach 18, most people (95 percent) in the U.S. have one or more erupted wisdom tooth; however the likelihood of these teeth being healthy and functional is slim to none. But if these third molars serve little to no purpose for millions of people, why do we have them at all?

It is believed our early human ancestors required this third, extra row of molars to chew their particularly coarse diet, which consisted primarily of hard nuts, roots and uncooked meats. Today, human diets not only consist of softer foods, but most of the cutting work is done by cutlery. Human jawbones have also become significantly smaller over time, leaving many people with no room to accommodate these extra teeth and no choice but to have them surgically removed.

When Is Wisdom Teeth Removal Necessary?

If your wisdom teeth are healthy, fully emerged, properly positioned and capable of being cleaned/maintained in accordance with daily best hygiene practices, you probably won’t need to have them removed. However, if any of the following problems are discovered, it is highly likely your dentist will recommend having your wisdom teeth extracted:

  • You experience pain in/around the gums surrounding your wisdom teeth.
  • There isn’t enough space in your mouth to accommodate newly erupted wisdom teeth.
  • Your wisdom teeth come in crooked, which could cause all your other, well-aligned teeth to shift and move over time.
  • A cyst (fluid-filled sac) develops around the wisdom teeth, which could potentially destroy surrounding bone and/or tooth roots.
  • The wisdom teeth remain hidden beneath the gums, unable to erupt normally, which can occasionally result in infection or the development of a cyst.
  • The wisdom teeth emerge only partially from the gums, making the area particularly difficult to clean and therefore more susceptible to bacteria, infection, etc.

Expert Wisdom Teeth Removal in Greater Louisville

Deciding whether or not you should have your wisdom teeth removed is not always simple. We encourage you to contact the friendly, compassionate team of dental surgeons at Greater Louisville Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Associates to schedule an appointment today. We’ll perform an in-depth evaluation of your wisdom teeth, listen carefully to your situation and concerns, answer any questions you may have and thoroughly explain all your options, so you can feel confident you’ve made the decision that’s best for you.