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So you lost your tooth over a year ago – what happens now?

Posted on May 19,2021

How you may still be able to benefit from dental implants

Dental implants are one of the best all-round options for replacing missing teeth. They restore not just the visible crown of a tooth, but the missing tooth root as well. Made from ultra-strong titanium, a dental implant resembles a tiny screw that is placed into your jaw bone to form an artificial tooth root.

But what if you don’t have a strong, stable jaw bone anymore? If you’ve been living with a missing tooth for some time – say up to a year or even more – it is quite likely that you will have experienced some loss of bone. In that case, can you still have a dental implant placed to restore your tooth?

In this news post we’ll take a look at the different factors that we take into account when assessing whether a dental implant is right for you, when you’ve been missing a tooth for a year or more.

What's the best option now you're missing a tooth?

What factors affect your ability to have a dental implant?

When we’re looking at whether a dental implant is the preferred option for replacing your missing tooth, there are a number of factors we take into account.

One of the most critical variables is where your missing tooth was in your mouth. If you’re missing a front tooth, it’s quite likely that your jaw bone will have deteriorated; whereas in the back of your mouth, this problem may not be so severe.

Along with the tooth’s location is the length of time your tooth has been missing. If a front tooth has been missing for a year or more, it’s quite likely that your jawbone will have deteriorated to the point where there isn’t sufficient “anchorage” for an implant.

Fortunately, you’ll still have a few options for bone grafting to create a solid foundation for a dental implant.

Can you still get a dental implant if your jawbone has deteriorated?

Today, regrowing sufficient bone in your jaw is a relatively straightforward process that can be tailored depending on your situation.

Sometimes we’ll need to build up the bone and then let it mature and solidify securely in your mouth, before we can place the dental implant. In other cases, we may be able to carry out this treatment at the same time we place your dental implant, saving both time and the need to have another surgical procedure.

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If you do need to regrow bone, the process may be quicker than you imagine. Previously, regrowing bone would mean adding around 3 to 12 months to your dental implant treatment time, since we’d need to graft bone from elsewhere in your body or use synthetic bone. However, we can now accelerate this process by using your body’s natural healing properties with technology called Advanced Platelet-Rich Fibrin (A-PRF) placement.

Find out more about how we can help you regrow bone for dental implants here.

How your body type influences your prognosis

Here’s an interesting fact that you may not be aware of. Your ability to naturally maintain your body’s bone is linked to your body type.

We find that more stocky, solidly built people can have live with a missing tooth in the back of their mouth for years, and still require no preparatory work before dental implant placement.

By contrast, thinner, more slightly built people may lose bone mass and density far more easily. In such cases, they may well require bone augmentation procedures such as a sinus lift before they can have an implant procedure.

It’s all part of the wonderful way the human body creates and maintains bone.

What's the best option now you're missing a tooth?

Talk to us about your options for a missing tooth

Whether you’ve been living with a missing tooth for some time, or your tooth is not yet missing, the first step is to come in and visit us at Wickham Terrace Dental. Our team will thoroughly assess your mouth and recommend the best option for your needs.

Whether we can look after your complete treatment plan, or call on an oral surgeon or periodontist, you’ll have the very best of care that suits your particular situation.

To arrange your appointment, call our friendly Brisbane dentists on (07) 3831 3031 or contact us online now.

Topics: dental implants

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