Unlike sharks with a seemingly unlimited set of replacement teeth, humans on the other hand, are only programmed with the genetic code to produce two sets of teeth – a childhood set and an adult set. While the childhood set lasts only a few short years, the adult set needs to last for many decades. Over time, factors such as diet, accidents, medical problems, medications, genetic diseases, grinding, and even dentistry itself, can degrade this adult set of teeth to the point where they cause pain, break, or no longer look and feel right.
In my experience, there are three main forces working against this precious set of adult teeth:
- Cavities (dental caries)
- Gum and bone disease (periodontal disease/pyorrhea)
- Biting disease (malocclusion/TMJ problems)
For those adults who have been severely been affected by one or all of these conditions, there is hope. Yes, I’m talking about a third set of teeth! A set of teeth that is stable, beautiful, functional, and strong. New technology now makes this a reality in less time and for less cost than many think.
While the first two sets of teeth are made of dentin and enamel, a different material needs to be used for the third set that is not susceptible to cavities, rarely breaks, and works in biologic harmony with the gums and bone, and let’s face it, looks and feels amazing as well. Like our colleagues in orthopedic surgery have known for years, one of the most durable and biomimetic materials for the job is titanium. And while the third set of teeth is not made of titanium, the support structures they sit on are.
Know as dental implants, or artificial roots, these titanium platforms have been used for decades to predictably, efficiently, and safely restore a patient’s smile and confidence when their original adult set of teeth can no longer provide the same level confidence and stability.
Today, with cutting edge, proven technologies and protocols, a full complement of teeth can be anchored by as few as four titanium dental implants in each arch. Known by a variety of trade names, the concepts are all basically the same – place four implants in key positions in a dental arch so as to avoid nerves and blood vessels, construct a custom set of replacement teeth and gums out of porcelain, and link them both together with screws that are hidden from view.
The result is a strong, beautiful, non-removable, long lasting, healthy chewing “machine” that gives a patient back their confidence, smile and health. The results are nothing short of amazing!
If you would like to learn more about this amazing technology, see if you are a candidate, or would like to speak to a patient who is enjoying their “third set of teeth”, give us a call today. We offer no-cost consultations and second opinions at New Paradigm Dentistry in Millstone Township, New Jersey.