Schedule An Appointment   |   (423)238-8887

Thursday, 30 May 2019 12:18

Are Dental Implants Right For You?

Here at Tedford Family Dentistry, we want to make sure that all of our Ooltewah clients fully understand the cosmetic dentistry services that we offer. In the world of dentistry, people generally place dental services into two main camps - things that need to be done and things people want to have done. For example, getting a cavity filled is a need-based service. Walking around with a cavity can be quite painful and, as such, is a service that most people would consider necessary in order to maintain the overall health of their mouth. However, in today’s post, we are going to talk about a service that, at first glance, doesn’t seem like a necessity but, after taking a moment to think about the benefits, can quickly blur the lines between what is necessary and what is wanted.

What are Dental Implants?

Before we dive into some of the benefits of dental implants and whether or not they are the right choice for your situation, we want to take a moment to explain what dental implants are. At the most basic level, dental implants are fake teeth that are placed in a patient's gums in order to replace a tooth that is dying or to fill in for a tooth that has already fallen out of the patient's mouth. Think of dental implants as an artificial tooth with an attached root. When dental implants are placed in the jawbone, they bond with the patient’s bone, providing a sturdy base for an artificial tooth (known as a crown) to be placed. In modern dentistry, dental implants are the best replacement for a lost or damaged tooth because they are the most realistic looking replacement available and, more importantly, they help to maintain the integrity of the jawbone.

When a tooth is lost or starts to die, the root is no longer firmly placed in the jawbone. While this might not seem like a huge deal to the average person, a missing tooth can actually create lasting damage that affects the integrity of the teeth closest to the missing or damaged tooth. The human jawbone is made to house teeth. The roots of teeth and the jawbone work together to maintain structural integrity of the jawbone. If a person is missing one or more teeth, the area of the jawbone where these teeth are missing becomes weaker. If left untreated, this weak spot can actually spread further away from the problem area, leading to an overall softening of the jawbone and, in a worst-case scenario, damage to the roots of healthy teeth. Luckily, dental implants help to solve this issue by giving the jawbone a “root” to grow around, maintaining the natural strength of the jawbone itself.

What are Some of the Advantages of Dental Implants?

Aside from helping the jawbone maintain its strength, dental implants offer many more benefits when compared to other tooth replacement options:
  • Improved Appearance - One major advantage that draws people toward dental implants is the fact that they are one of the most natural-looking tooth replacement options. When placed in the mouth, dental implants look and feel just like a natural tooth.
  • Improved Speech - A major complaint we hear from people with dentures is that they can slip in a patient’s mouth, causing a person to slur or to mumble their words. This occurs because the dentures may not sit properly in a person’s mouth. With dental implants, this problem does not occur because the implants are fused directly to a person’s jawbone, guaranteeing that no slipping will occur.
  • Improved Oral Health - Unlike dental bridges, dental implants do not require the reducing of surrounding teeth. Because the adjacent teeth are not altered to support the implant, a patient’s original teeth are left intact, greatly improving long-term oral health.
  • Durability - Another great feature of dental implants is the fact that they are super durable. The implant itself is made from medical grade stainless steel, while the crown can be made from a variety of materials including resin, ceramic-based materials, or porcelain fused to metal. No matter the material, dental implants are made to last.
  • Convenience - Once a dental implant is placed in a patient’s jaw, they often times forget that they even have a false tooth. Other tooth replacement options, such as dental bridges or dentures, require a certain amount of upkeep and, unfortunately, must oftentimes be removed from the mouth in order to be properly cleaned. Because a dental implant is a permanent, long-term solution that is designed to stay in a patient’s mouth, upkeep is the same as it would be for a natural tooth.

Are Dental Implants Right for Me?

By this point in the post, you are probably wondering if dental implants are the right choice for your particular situation. While every patient’s situation is different, we are confident in saying that dental implants are almost always the best choice when it comes to replacing a damaged or missing tooth.

We hope that this blog helped answer some questions about dental implants and the advantages they provide. If you are interested in learning more about the dental implant services we offer at our Ooltewah location, please feel free to reach out to us through our contact form or give us a call at 423-238-8887.
Published in Blog

cosmetic dentistry ooltewah tnWe all want a more youthful appearance, especially as we approach middle-age and worry about getting passed over for jobs in favor of younger candidates or fear that we are losing our sex appeal. Millions of Americans fight to hide signs of the natural aging process with injections to tighten the skin and products to conceal gray hairs. One positive impact of cosmetic dentistry performed at our Ooltewah TN dental office is a more youthful appearance. For those with teeth in good condition, teeth whitening or dental veneers can give the illusion of a more youthful smile. For others who’ve lost teeth over the years, dental implants surgically positioned into the jawbone create a similar effect.

Cosmetic Dentistry: The Fountain of Youth?

Teeth Whitening and Dental Veneers

Think back to when you were a younger person, perhaps in your twenties, with beautiful white teeth freshly aligned from wearing braces in your teens. Wouldn’t it be great to have those pearly whites again? Like the circles inside a tree marking the passage of time, the shade of the enamel on our teeth can reveal our age, even for those who’ve taken great care of their teeth, brushing and flossing daily and scheduling regular cleanings twice a year as recommended. It’s simply inevitable for teeth to stain as a result of aging, combined with tobacco use, years of drinking colas or coffees, eating acidic foods, or possibly as a result of some trauma experienced along the way. Teeth whitening at our Ooltewah cosmetic dentistry office lightens teeth and helps to decrease this discoloration. Another alternative is applying thin pieces of porcelain veneers to add strength and mask natural teeth that are chipped, stained, or worn-down over time.

Whitening is the cheapest and easiest way to make a smile look younger, says Bruce Seidner, a fellow at the Academy of General Dentistry. “However, not everyone can have their teeth successfully whitened. Sometimes a person's enamel or damage to the teeth make it difficult to achieve lasting results. In those cases, a veneer covering the tooth may be a better option,” Seidner told US News & World Report

Dental Implants

When simple teeth whitening and veneers fail to improve the look of teeth, dental implants become the next option if someone wants to avoid dentures, which can slip and not feel as natural. It’s important for surgically implanted teeth to match the tone of the surrounding teeth, if any, in order to appear natural. Missing teeth can cause a more “sunken-in” appearance and add wrinkles to the face. The effects of gum disease building over generations can impact the look of our smile as well and may require grafting to restore receded gums. It’s comforting to know that age doesn’t disqualify us from having a better smile.

Explore Cosmetic Dentistry Options for a Whiter, More Youthful Smile

No two people age in exactly the same way. Regardless of the condition of the mouth, we can always look better with some effort. With cosmetic dental procedures performed in Tedford Family Dentistry’s Ooltewah TN office, you can enjoy and embrace your age with a more confident, youthful smile that helps you compete for that job or win the attention of that special someone.

Dr. Keith Tedford can consult with patients who want to improve the appearance of their teeth and achieve a more youthful look. To meet with him and our staff, call us at (423) 238-8887 or stop by our office at 9380 Bradmore Lane, Suite 108, in Ooltewah TN to schedule an appointment with Dr. Tedford.


Photo: © GStockStudio / 123RF Stock Photo

Blog © 2018 Tedford Family Dentistry: Tedford Keith DDS | Ooltewah TN 37363

Published in Blog