This message from Green Dentistry in San Francisco focuses on missing teeth and bone health, and how dental implants can make a difference.
Our teeth have many important functions. We need them to chew, talk, and smile. But have you ever considered their role in holding up your face? When we lose teeth, the surrounding bone actually begins to shrink. This, in turn, leaves a sagging appearance to the face.
You may think of bone as a solid mass. But below the hard surface, bone tissue is full of small holes – kind of like a sponge.
Bone is constantly regenerating itself in a process is called bone metabolism. Biting and chewing stimulate this process. When a tooth is gone, the bone starts to shrink as blood flow is reduced.
Dental Implants Can Prevent Bone Recession
Dental implants can prevent this bone recession. This is because the implant is placed directly in the jaw. It stimulates the surrounding bone much like the tooth root it is replacing.
One dental implant can support one artificial tooth. Several can support a dental bridge or a full dental arch.
Even if you have lost jaw bone mass, bone grafting can promote new bone growth, enough for an implant.