A beautiful and genuine smile is one of the effective ways to look attractive and approachable. A way to achieve this kind of smile is to have a complete set of pearly white teeth. However, one cannot avoid losing a tooth for various reasons that can cause insecurities with their smile.

If you have this kind of problem, a dental implant is one of the solutions you can choose.

What is a dental implant?

Dental implants are artificial tooth roots surgically implanted into your jaw to restore your ability to chew or your appearance. It supports artificial (fake) teeth, such as crowns, bridges, or dentures. It comprises a dental implant body and implant abutment and may include an abutment fixation screw.

Your dentist will recommend two major dental implant types depending on your problem and general oral condition.

First is the Endosteal Implant, the common type of implant, which includes screws or cylinders placed into your jawbone to hold your prosthetic teeth. It is an option for patients currently wearing bridges or removable dentures.

The other type of implant is the Subperiosteal Implant. Your dentist will place the implant on the jaw bone with a metal framework protruding through the gums to hold the fake teeth in place. It is an option for those unable to wear conventional dentures and those who do not have the required bone height to hold an endosteal implant.

Requirements before being considered for dental implants

Since a dental implant is a surgical procedure involving the bone and tissues in your jaw, there are a few requirements before your dentist provides it as an option.

  1. You are in good physical and oral health:
    The procedure will involve anaesthesia, so you should be healthy so that there will be no complications. It also applies to your oral health to avoid early implant deterioration.
  2. You have adequate bone in your jaw:
    The procedure needs to drill screws or cylinders in your jawbone, so there should be enough bone for implant placement.
  3. You have healthy gum tissues without any periodontal disease:
    It is necessary to ensure that problems in your gums will not be aggravated further by an implant.

Benefits and risks of dental implant

Like any surgical procedure, there are benefits and risks, mainly when complications occur.


  • Restores the ability to chew
  • Enhanced your appearance: Dental implants look and feel like natural teeth and can enhance your smile, thus boosting your appearance and approachability.
  • Helps promote oral health: Dental implants do not require the alteration of adjacent teeth and can administer oral health by preserving healthy teeth and preventing bone loss.
  • Restores natural speech: Dental implants can help restore your speech by filling gaps left by missing teeth. It will help your pronunciation and confidence in talking.


  • Infection: As with any surgical procedure, there is a risk of infection. Proper oral care and regular dental check-ups can minimise the risk of infection.
  • Damage to surrounding teeth and tissue: The placement of dental implants can damage surrounding teeth, gums, and tissue if not done correctly.
  • Nerve damage: Nerve damage can happen during implant placement, which can result in numbness or tingling in the mouth, chin, or lips.
  • Implant failure: In rare cases, dental implants can fail due to infection, bone loss, or other issues.
  • Cost: Dental implants can be expensive, and many insurance plans do not cover the total cost of the procedure.
  • Impaired function: Feeling like the teeth do not bite together like usual.

The procedure

You must undergo at least two significant stages spanning a few months in implant placement.

  1. Your dentist will have to examine your mouth and bones by conducting an X-ray of your head, jaw and teeth to determine if an implant is right for you.
  2. First Stage: Your dentist may place the implant under your gum tissue and then stitch your gums back in place. As your tissue heals, the implant will bond with your bone and hold to the gum, which will take several months.
  3. Second Stage: An abutment is attached once the tissue has healed. The abutment is the post that connects the replacement tooth to the implant. Sometimes, this process can also be done during the first stage.
  4. Followed by making an artificial tooth to fit the abutment. Making the fake tooth fit into the abutment may take several appointments.
  5. A fixed bridge will anchor to your implants if several teeth are missing. A dental restoration called a “bridge” replaces one or more missing teeth by bridging an area with no teeth. The bridge is firmly in place by dental implants on each side of your missing tooth or teeth.

How to take care of your dental implant

  • Brush and floss regularly:
    Brush twice daily and floss once daily to remove plaque and food particles around the implant and surrounding teeth.
  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and non-abrasive toothpaste:
    Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to clean around the implant and avoid damaging the soft tissue, and non-abrasive toothpaste to avoid scratching the implant surface.
  • Avoid hard or sticky foods:
    Hard or sticky foods can damage the implant or surrounding teeth.
  • Quit smoking:
    Smoking can increase the risk of your implant failure, so quitting smoking can help ensure the long-term success of your implant.
  • Visit your dentist regularly:
    Visit your dentist for check-ups and professional cleanings to ensure your implant’s and surrounding teeth’s health.


A missing tooth is inevitable as you age, but it shouldn’t be a problem since dental implants are available. These implants are life-changing procedures to help you cope with insecurities related to missing teeth. However, there are things to consider when planning to get an implant. The most important thing to do is seek medical advice from your dentist for the appropriate option and safety.