A missing back molar will negatively impact your ability to chew, and it can even detract from your smile, although it’s not in a highly visible location. Your other teeth may shift out of their correct positions to fill in the empty space left behind by the missing molar. Patients who have lost a rear molar should carefully consider their tooth replacement options so that they are getting the most functional, aesthetically pleasing artificial tooth device possible.
Dental implants can be a good option for tooth replacement. The surrounding bone will form a bond with the titanium surface of the implant, allowing the implant to function in the same way that a biological tooth’s root does. So, a missing back molar that is replaced by an implant-supported crown will be more stable and effective at chewing because of the connection between the jaw and the prosthetic crown.
In order for an oral surgeon to successfully place dental implants, a patient’s jaw must have enough bone to form that solid bond that gives the dental implant so many of its positive characteristics. If bone loss has occurred, the implant may fail prematurely. Therefore, it’s optimal to pursue dental implant placement soon after tooth loss before much jawbone atrophy has developed.
Initially, your oral surgeon will carefully evaluate your case to determine whether you are a good candidate for immediate dental implant placement. If it appears that you have already suffered too much bone loss that could compromise osseointegration, you may need to undergo a bone graft to insert supplemental bone material at the implant site.
Although a bone graft will extend your treatment timeline, it’s a worthwhile investment to improve your chances of long-term dental implant success.
You may be able to replace a lost back molar with a dental implant. Even if bone loss has occurred, a bone graft can help you to access this treatment. Schedule an evaluation with one of our oral surgeons at our office to learn more about your treatment options for tooth loss.