Want to know if dental implants are right for you? This information may help.
Whether you have lost all your teeth, a few of them, or even just one tooth, dental implants should be considered as an option for your oral rehabilitation program.
To help you decide if the exciting benefits of implants are suitable for you, get in touch with us. A consultation will clarify what type of treatment you require.
Eating and correct chewing is essential for a healthy body. It is also one of the greatest human pleasures. Thousands of people, both young and old, no longer have their own teeth. Some manage quite well with dentures, for others they are unsatisfactory.
If you feel embarrassed or uncomfortable about gaps, missing teeth, dentures that are loose or unexpectedly drop down or you are unable to chew properly, yet you feel you deserve the best today’s modern restorative dentistry can provide, dental implants may be the solution.
What is a dental implant?
A dental implant can be thought of as an artificial tooth root that is submerged into the jawbone. When dental work such as a crown, fixed bridge or a full set of dentures is added, one or more missing teeth can be replaced. A dental implant is fabricated from a very strong, biocompatible material placed in a simple procedure that, generally, is as convenient as a tooth extraction. After an initial healing period, during which the implant is buried in bone and left undisturbed under gum tissue, it is uncovered and connected to a small metal post that secures and supports the artificial tooth. The bone grows to the implant and bonds to it. This makes the implant very strong.
How long does it take?
It depends on the type of bone, and where the implant is placed into your jaw. It can range from a few months to over 9 months. Generally, implants in the front lower jaw need around 4 months; the back upper jaw needs around 9 months and elsewhere in the mouth around 6 months. These times may need to be lengthened if bone needs to be grown or grafting has taken place.
Is everyone suitable for dental implants?
Some people may not be suitable for this procedure. Conditions such as alcoholism, some psychiatric disorders and uncontrolled diabetes can cause problems. Your dentist will also need to check to see how much bone you have and whether there is enough space for an implant. The adjacent teeth roots will also need to be away from the implant. If you don’t have enough bone, it is possible to grow bone or even graft bone from elsewhere in the mouth or places like your hip.
What are the advantages of the implant treatment?
The adjacent teeth are not damaged or cut in any way. It helps to prevent bone loss. Implants are also used to stabilise loose dentures or even replace them with fixed bridges.
What is the procedure for implant treatment?
The gum is folded back and the bone drilled to receive the implant. You may have this done in the chair with local anaesthetic or go into the hospital for a general anaesthetic. The implant is generally covered over and left to heal until the implant is osseointegrated. Your oral surgeon or periodontist may also leave the implant uncovered by the gum at this first stage. A second operation may then be needed to uncover the top of the implant. We can usually start construction of your crown or a bridge after a month.
How long will an implant last?
This is impossible to predict. Though research has demonstrated a long life once the implants have been integrated with bone, each patient is different, and longevity may be affected by overall health, nutrition, oral hygiene and tobacco usage. Individual anatomy, the design and construction of the prosthesis and oral habit s may also have an influence.
Got more questions? Get in touch and one of our friendly team can assist.