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The Psychology of a Smile

How dental implants can restore confidence and increase quality of life.
    MIAMI BEACH, FL, April 13, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/ -- According to a recent consumer survey by the American Academy of Periodontology, 50 percent of people consider a person's smile the first feature they notice.

A simple smile can disarm and open the door to new relationships, but that very same study found that

80% of people are not happy with their smile and feel inadequate about their teeth.

In the US alone 70 % of the population are missing at least one tooth.

Dentures in particular provide many areas of insecurity, especially in social interactions, such as sharing a meal. Chewing can be difficult and the fear of having the denture move out of place can turn even the most romantic gourmet dinner into a struggle.

Many people consider dental implants as a possible solution to restoring their teeth but are scared or unsure of the results.

An implant is a man made replacement for the natural tooth root, which allows a person to return to non-removable teeth.
Prosthodontist and clinical professor of Oral Implantology Dr. Misch-Dietsh, who is part of the faculty at Temple University in Pennsylvania, observes in her practice that the psychological impact of returning to non-removable teeth is profound.

"I had a patient who deliberately waited to go out on a date with a suitor until her implants were completed. She was afraid that if he wanted to kiss her the dentures might move."

According to Dr. Misch-Dietsh, who is also a diplomat on the American Board of Oral Implantology, lack of confidence in the appearance and functionality of ones teeth can have a severe limiting effect on the enjoyment of life.

"Eating presents a large part of our social interaction. One of my patients used to take her lunch in the bathroom at her place of work, because she was ashamed of chewing in public with her dentures."

Not only does this heavily impact self-confidence, but also limits the food choices, as harder to chew foods are often avoided. This in turn has an effect on nutritional intake and health.

But not only eating and fear of romantic interactions are affecting self-confidence. According to a study by Misch and Misch 88 % of people missing teeth reported difficulty with speech. Basic communication is often affected, limiting social interaction and work performance.

In addition to the esthetic and psychological factor, dental implants are vital for protecting the remaining teeth. Dr. Misch-Dietsh explains that implants are often needed to counteract accelerated bone loss after teeth have been lost or removed.
Even if one is missing only one or a few teeth, a bridge will not prevent the bone from further deteriorating. "Nature will take away what is not used, and the bone will continue to deteriorate. Now the adjacent teeth might be lost as well and things continue downhill from there.

Implants are now the treatment of choice instead of the old fashioned bridge."

Misch explains that this has proven to preserve the health of the adjacent teeth and therefore maintain the existing dentition, avoiding more decay, root canals and further dentistry.

Dentures alone equally are not the long-term answer, as they again provide no defense against impeding bone loss.

The first denture usually works well, but as the bone structure shrinks, the denture has less and less support. Explains Misch-Dietsh.

Replacing the missing tooth combats this decline and helps to keep the other teeth intact.

Also, existing dentures can be supported with a few strategically placed mini implants; much like pillars would support a house. The Denture then hooks up into this supporting structure and now stays in place.

One of the main deterrents to getting dental implants is the fear of pain. Dr. Misch-Dietsh shares that her patients nearly always overestimate the amount of pain they will experience." Yes there is Surgery involved, but it is not the grueling picture one might have in mind.

We control the discomfort with adequate pain medication and most of my patients tell me it was much less severe than they thought. The downtime is about 3 days and patients can usually return to work after that."

Dr. Misch-Dietsh, who has 20 years of experience in Periodontics, Prostodontics and Implantology, feels that dental Implants help to restore not only teeth but also life satisfaction.

"I really enjoy doing this, because I am able to give quality of life back.

People can eat, smile, kiss, feel confident and live their life without this profound limitation. It s amazing to be able to make this kind of difference in someone's life."

For more information on Dr. Misch-Dietsh visit www.drhankbarreto.com or call (305) 648 4998.


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Verena Giordano
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Miami Beach, FL
USA
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