Dental implants are a popular tooth-replacement option designed to replace missing teeth and restore your smile. They’re a popular choice because they look, feel and function just like your natural teeth. Do implants change color like natural teeth?
Dental implants allow you to chew, speak and smile with confidence and, with good care, they can last you many years.
What Are Dental Implants?
A dental implant is an artificial root that integrates into the jawbone. It’s made from titanium or other biocompatible materials and looks similar to a normal tooth. The implant acts as a foundation for crowns, bridges or dentures.
Why Replace Missing Teeth?
Missing teeth affect how we eat, talk and socialize. If you have one or more missing teeth, it may be time to consider dental implants. A dental implant allows us to:
- Eat comfortably
- Speak clearly
- Smile confidently
Replacing missing teeth can also help protect your health by reducing the risk of gum disease and bone loss around the remaining teeth.
How Do I Get Dental Implants?
There are two types of dental implants: single-tooth and multiple-tooth. We will determine which type works best for you based on what needs replacing.
If you need only one new tooth, a single-tooth implant is often recommended. This procedure replaces one missing tooth with a small metal post (implant) that’s placed directly in the jawbone. After healing, a permanent restoration is attached to the implant.
If you have several missing teeth, a multiple-tooth implant may be right for you. In this case, your dentist places several implants in each jaw area where you want a replacement tooth. Once healed, a bridge or denture is attached to the implants.
Who Is Eligible for Dental Implants?
You may be eligible for dental implants if:
- You have lost one or more teeth due to tooth decay, injury or disease.
- You don’t want to use removable dentures.
- Your jawbone is healthy enough to support the implant.
- You want to improve the appearance of your smile.
The first step in getting dental implants is scheduling a consultation at our office. During this visit, we’ll discuss your needs and answer any questions you might have about dental implants. We’ll also take X-rays so we know what kind of treatment will best meet your needs.
We’ll then prepare your gums and bone tissue around the area where your new tooth roots will grow. This process takes several months. Once it’s complete, we’ll place and connect the dental implant(s) to your gum tissue.
After placement, we’ll provide instructions on how to care for your implant and protect it from damage. If you follow these guidelines, your dental implant should last a lifetime. In general, we recommend that you floss and brush your implant daily and see your dentist at least twice a year for cleanings.
In the meantime, you may have some questions about dental implants and how they look, feel and function. One question we often hear is: “Can dental implants change color like real teeth?”
Your natural teeth can be left with unsightly stains from certain foods and drinks, such as:
- Coffee and tea
- Red wine
- Carbonated beverages
- Dark chocolate
But can dental implants change color? While dental implants are designed to resist staining from foods and beverages, if the finish on the crown portion of your dental implant is compromised or damaged in some way, your implant could become stained.
What Causes Damage to Dental Implants?
Dental implants are strong and durable. You should do your part to protect these implants from damage. Acidic foods can harm dental implants. Chewing on hard objects such as ice, candy and non-food items like pens can damage dental implants.
If you notice your dental implant has been damaged, please contact us right away. Damaged dental implants can cause pain and discomfort when chewing food. And they could lead to infection if not treated properly.
Can Dental Implants Be Whitened?
If you do notice stains on your implants, what can you do to whiten or brighten your smile? You may be tempted to try a whitening product, but we recommend that you talk to us before attempting to whiten your teeth or remove a stain on implants.
This is because some whitening agents can further damage your implant. Some whiteners contain abrasives that can scratch or wear away the surface of your dental implant. Other products contain chemicals that can react with your implant and cause damage.
Your natural tooth enamel can also become damaged or discolored from some whitening products. If you want white teeth, talk to us about how to do it safely.
Do You Have a Dental Implant and Want to Whiten Your Teeth?
If you want a whiter and brighter smile, talk to us! Our team of cosmetic dentists and hygienists can help you decide which whitening options will work best for you to remove stains on your teeth. They can advise you on whether whitening your teeth would be safe and effective for your dental implant.
Are you missing a natural tooth? We can help restore your beautiful smile. Call us now to schedule an appointment to talk about our tooth-replacement options.