How Dental Implants Keep Your Jaw Bones Strong
Maintaining strong bones throughout your body is important, especially as one ages. However, bone loss in the jaw is fairly common, although much of the loss can be avoided. If you need dental replacements and are trying to decide which variety is right for you, then read on to learn how dental implants can protect what other dental replacements can potentially harm.
When someone loses one or more teeth, bone loss is almost certain to occur unless action is taken to prevent it. While many people consider teeth unchanging, they play a role in keeping your jaw strong. Every time you bear down on your teeth, though biting and chewing, you send pressure into the jaw that triggers the body to focus on rebuilding the jaw bone. This is the same sort of mechanism that makes weight lifting good for the rest of your bones. Bones need pressure in order to be maintained properly by the body, but when your teeth are lost, the bone no longer receives adequate pressure. As a result, jaw bone loss typically occurs.
There are, of course, other methods of dental replacements out there. Unfortunately, none of them can help to maintain your bone strength or regain bone mass that's already been lost. In fact, in some cases, dental replacements can make matters worse.
Dentures, in particular, sit on top of the gums and can cause rubbing and irritation. Since they sit on top, they can't send pressure down into the jaw bone like a real tooth does. The irritation caused to the gums can also cause inflammation in the body, which can potentially harm the bones underneath, as well.
Dental Implant Solution
Dental implants are unique in that they mimic the functionality of actual teeth. Dental implants have a small peg that goes under the gums and stretches to the jaw bone. This means that when you bite down on a dental implant, it sends pressure into the bone just like a real tooth would. This can help to prevent your jaw from becoming weaker and thinner if you get them quickly after losing your teeth, or immediately following extraction. However, even if you've already lost bone mass, there's still potential help to be found with dental implants.
Once the stimulation begins in the jaw again, the body will gradually start to strengthen the bone. Over time, you may regain the bone mass that you lost, and at the very least, stabilize your condition so that you don't lose any further bone mass.