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Are you missing a tooth? Is it affecting what you can eat? How big you can smile?

Feeling confident in your smile can be difficult if you are missing one or more teeth. But a missing tooth has more problems than aesthetics. It affects your overall health as well as your oral health.

One missing tooth can equal a whole mess of problems

It’s not so much scare-mongering as it is straightforward medical science. When you lose a tooth high levels of bacteria and inflammation can form.

Chronic levels of inflammation can cause problems throughout your body. Now this inflammation may start with something insidious such as gum disease or it could start elsewhere in the body. The point is that it can—and often does—spread and negatively impact your overall health.

The most common example cited is the many and varied links between gum disease and other serious health problems. Which is, according to the latest research, a result of the chronic inflammation and bacteria caused by gum disease travelling through to major organs such as the brain, heart and kidneys. According the latest research gum disease has been linked to:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Alzheimer’s

However, it is still uncertain if gum disease is a causative factor in these illnesses or vice versa. With Alzheimer’s, it is thought that the chronic inflammation and bacteria associated with gum disease travels through the cranial nerves and causes or contributes to Alzheimer’s.

It’s not that replacing a tooth can prevent all this, but it can minimise your risk of gum disease.

We have the best way to replace a missing tooth

There is nothing better than dental implants for replacing a missing tooth. Unlike other forms of restorative treatment, dental implant treatment replaces the whole tooth.

The dental implant acts as an artificial tooth root and then the dental crown or bridge replaces the top half (crown) of your tooth.

Having dental implant treatment is better for your oral health because:

  • By mimicking the tooth root you are looking after your jawbone
  • By mimicking the crown you are looking after your bite as well as your remaining teeth
  • By mimicking the whole tooth it improves your overall oral structure

The treatment for dental implants takes around three to six months depending on a number of factors, and it takes around two appointments to complete the treatment. The first part of your treatment is where the dental implant is inserted into your jaw, the second appointment—which takes places months after the first—is when the dental crown or bridge is attached to the dental implant.

The months in between the first and second appointment are the time it takes for your jaw to heal around the dental implant. There are four main factors that can play a part in determining how long the healing process will take:

  1. Placement of the implant: an implant placed in the lower jaw will heal faster than an implant placed in the upper jaw
  2. Your oral health
  3. Your overall health
  4. Your body’s natural ability to heal: if have an illness or smoke this can adversely affect the time it takes for your body to heal around the dental implant.

The sooner you get treatment the better

When you lose a tooth, the specific bone that is responsible for ‘holding’ the tooth root in place will gradually start to dissolve. Once this has gone, it will not grow back. This is just one of the reasons why you should visit Marriott & Hand as soon as possible after losing a tooth.

Our friendly staff at our Melbourne practice will explain the dental implant treatment to you, all the associated costs and time that the treatment will take. If you would like to know more about how Marriott & Hand can help you, contact us today.