A natural tooth consists of a crown (the part you see above the gum), and the root (the part hidden under the gum). It is the root in the jawbone that actually holds the natural tooth in place. A dental implant is a small man-made titanium fixture that serves as a replacement for the root portion of a missing natural tooth.
Implants provide additional support where teeth are missing without putting force onto remaining natural teeth. They may be used to support the replacement of a single missing tooth or a complete functional set for individuals who have lost many or all of their teeth. Anyone missing one or more of their teeth due to injury, disease, or decay may be a candidate for dental implants.