You may not be a vampire or a sabretooth tiger, but don't underestimate the importance of your canine teeth. These pointed, fang-like teeth, located on either side of your incisor (front) teeth, are just as useful to humans as they were to their distant ancestors, and losing one or more of these teeth can be both debilitating and embarrassing.
If you are missing one or more of your canine teeth, cosmetic dentists can offer a number of replacement options, from bridges to partial dentures. However, dental implants are considered the gold standard when it comes to replacing missing canines.
Why Should You Have Missing Canine Teeth Replaced?
Because canine teeth are located toward the front of your mouth, they are highly visible when you speak, laugh, and smile. The sizable gap left behind by a lost canine tooth can put a serious dent in your confidence, and many people with visible missing teeth may not be as expressive or gregarious in public as they used to be.
However, canine teeth also serve a practical purpose. Their pointed edges are designed to grip and stabilize food as you bite down on it, allowing the incisors to cut cleanly through whatever you are eating. Missing canines can make it surprisingly difficult to bite and chew through foods, especially tough, chewy foods like steak or rye bread.
Why Are Implants The Best Replacement Option For Missing Canine Teeth?
If you are considering using implants to replace one or more missing canine teeth, your first step should be to book a dental implant consultation. During this consultation, dental professionals will use sophisticated imaging equipment to determine whether your mouth can accept implants. If you have any underlying oral health conditions, such as gum disease or bone density loss in your jawbone, you may need other treatments before implants can be successfully installed.
If and when you do become eligible for dental implants, they have a number of advantages over other canine tooth replacement options:
Durability And Longevity
Dental implant crowns (the visible 'teeth') are made from tough ceramic materials, such as porcelain, which are fixed into your mouth by titanium screws. These titanium screws are implanted directly into your jawbone. Because titanium does not react with human tissues, your jawbone will regrow around the screw, fixing it firmly in place.
This arrangement makes dental implants extremely tough and long-lasting. You may need the occasional examination by a dentist, but in many cases, dental implants will last for the rest of your life.
Compared to dentures and bridges, which must be repaired or replaced every few years, dental implants represent a permanent solution. While dental implants can be expensive, they are a smarter long-term investment, because you won't be spending more money in the future on adjustments and replacements.
Stability And Security
Because dental implants are fixed directly to your jawbone, they are highly resistant to accidental impacts and knocks. They can easily withstand the pressure of a strong bite without becoming loosened and will not fall out of your mouth unexpectedly while you eat or speak.
Secure, reliable dental implants provide ultimate peace of mind and are particularly useful when it comes to replacing canine teeth. Because canine teeth are used to grip foods, they are often subjected to more physical stress than other teeth. The security provided by canine implants will make your new canines feel like your old, 'real' teeth, letting you eat whatever you want with confidence.
Long-time denture wearers know that maintaining your dentures can be a real hassle. They must be removed and carefully cleaned on a daily basis and fixed in place with denture sealants that are often unreliable. Bridges are easier to maintain but are still more difficult to clean than natural teeth, especially if a gap develops between the bridge and your gum line.
Dental implants are cleaned and maintained in exactly the same way as natural teeth—just brush and floss them as normal. Dental implants are easy and inexpensive to maintain, and after a while, you may even forget that your new canines aren't your original teeth!
Contact your dentist to learn more about dental implants.