When a decayed tooth is scheduled for extraction, it's best to have a plan for its replacement. A dental implant is likely to be your dentist's recommendation. But since you're about to have a tooth extracted, you might not be so eager to commit to another dental procedure straightaway. Dental implants, after all, require a small surgical procedure. So what's the harm in waiting?
The placement and angle of your teeth are largely regulated by other teeth. A tooth's vertical dimensions are assured by the teeth on either side. When a tooth is missing, its neighbors tend to tilt into the gap. It's a progressive and fairly protracted development, but with the extra space created in your dental arch, all teeth in the arch have a minute amount of extra space, and so can conceivably shift out of alignment.
Severely misaligned teeth will require orthodontic work (braces or clear aligners) to rectify, and this is a treatment that could have been avoided if the tooth that instigated the issue was replaced at the time of its loss. Delays in receiving a dental implant can also complicate the actual implantation procedure.
It's best to install a dental implant as soon as it's needed. When the tooth is lost, the portion of your jaw that holds your dental sockets (known as the alveolar ridge) is no longer stimulated by the biomechanical forces directed downwards from the tooth. The bone then loses density, as the nutrients responsible for retaining the bone's mass are redirected elsewhere in your skeletal system. This is a natural process, but one that must be reversed before you can receive a dental implant.
Patients who delay receiving a dental implant often need bone grafting (when bone material is manually grafted onto their jaw). This can be essential for returning the bone to the required density to hold the implant. Grafting materials can be synthetic, come from a donor, or be extracted from another site in your own mouth. It's an additional procedure that might be required before you can receive an implant, but could have been avoided if the implant was placed promptly.
Delaying a dental implant opens the door to a selection of serious dental complications, and there's also the fact that the longer you delay, the more complicated the implant procedure can be. So when a decayed tooth is scheduled for extraction, it's best to schedule the placement of your dental implant.
Talk to your dentist to learn more about dental implants.
Up until a year ago, I did my best to keep my teeth and gums clean. But after securing a new job, I began to work late into the night and didn't have the time or energy to brush and floss before I retired to bed. My busy schedule and poor dental hygiene finally affected my teeth and gums. After experiencing severe pain in several of my teeth, I made an appointment with my dentist. My dentist examined my mouth and discovered three large cavities in my molars. After four long weeks, my dentist finally completed my dental work. I learned a very painful lesson during that time. No matter how busy you are, always brush and floss. I started this blog to inform other people about the importance of good dental care. I hope you find the time to read it. Thanks for visiting.