Have you put off replacing a missing tooth? One of the primary consequences of not replacing a missing tooth in a timely manner is the shifting of adjacent teeth. In other words, the neighboring teeth on either side of the missing tooth will naturally drift towards the open gap over time. This can be problematic if you want a dental implant but there is limited space for it to fit. Don’t worry; it doesn’t mean you can’t get a dental implant and regain a stable and natural-looking tooth. You just may need to undergo orthodontic treatment prior to implant placement.
The most proven and traditional way of moving the teeth back into their original position is with the use of metal braces. This involves wearing brackets on your teeth that are connected with a wire and tightened with an elastic tie or spring. However, since adults don’t always welcome the idea of wearing metal braces, there are other alternative solutions.
Clear braces or clear aligner therapy can be used to realign your teeth and make room for a dental implant. Clear aligner therapy is growing in popularity, as it involves sets of clear (nearly invisible) aligner trays that are changed out every couple of weeks until your orthodontic goals are complete. In addition to their high discretion and convenience, your orthodontist may be able to attach a temporary prosthetic tooth to the trays to conceal the missing space during treatment.
Another Issue of Waiting Too Long for Tooth Replacement
There’s one more concern to consider if you have waited a long period of time to get a dental implant: bone loss. This is especially true if you lost your tooth due to severe gum disease, which may have compromised the integrity and health of the underlying jawbone that supports your tooth. Furthermore, when missing teeth aren’t replaced with a dental implant, the jawbone fails to receive proper stimulation and may resorb or atrophy over time. Therefore, you may need to consider orthodontics as well as a bone grafting procedure prior to dental implant surgery.
At the office of Dr. Wayne Suway, we will carefully evaluate your candidacy for dental implants. While we encourage patients to replace a missing tooth sooner rather than later, it doesn’t make you exempt from this excellent restorative solution if you have waited. Whether you weren’t aware of the consequences or couldn’t afford a dental implant before now, we can explain the necessary treatment steps you may need to take in order to qualify for a dental implant. Dr. Wayne Suway is known for his expertise in providing implants for complex cases. Schedule your consult today and we can let you know if you need orthodontics prior to your implant procedure.