What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are the best alternative for replacing a missing natural tooth. They are made out of a titanium “screw” which is placed in the jaw bone. After a period of healing time a crown or denture can then be attached. Keeping up with Preventive Care appointments and everyday flossing and brushing an implant is designed to last many years, even an entire lifetime.
Why Do I Need An Implant?
There are many different reasons for needing a dental implant. Listed are brief outlines on why implants could be the better alternative.
Tooth Loss – When a tooth or multiple teeth are missing the teeth either side may drift into the gap causing areas for food and plaque to get trapped in. Long term the gum and bone may recede in that area causing adjacent natural teeth becoming loose.
Adult Teeth Not Erupting – Some people don’t form all of their adult teeth leaving unwanted spaces in the mouth after the baby teeth have fallen out. Some may opt for braces if there are other areas that need correcting e.g.; crowding. If this is not the case implants are great tooth replacements.
Loose Denture – 90% of people succeed with an upper denture where 90% DON’T succeed with a lower denture. If you have a denture and can’t stand how loose it is then an
Implant Retained Denture may be an option for you. After implants have been placed, numerous appointments are then required to attach the denture to the implants with the right abutments. After complete, the patient will be able to achieve effective chewing, as the denture will be firmly secured. Also wearing dentures for a long period of time cause bone and tissue to recede therefore needing a new set of dentures more regularly.
The procedure of a Dental Implant
Consultation – Firstly you need to have a consultation with your dentist. At this appointment the dentist will determine how much bone you have and what is required for an implant. Patients that smoke or have periodontal disease are at a high risk of an implant failing. The dentist will let you know if you are a candidate for implants at the consult. An extra radiograph or CT scan may be required to establish the amount of bone you have.
Placing The Implant – With precision placement the dentist will expose the underlying bone for the implant to be placed. Once the area has been prepared the dentist will insert the implant in place and reposition the gum, to allow healing.
Placing The Abutment & Taking An Impression – Once the implant is placed the dentist will let it heal for at least 3 months. Once the gums and bone have settled the
implant is exposed and an abutment is placed, this acts as the support post between the implant and the crown. Once the abutment has been fitted correctly an impression is then taken. The mould will then get sent to a laboratory where the final crown or denture attachments can be constructed.
Fitting The Crown – Once the crown or denture is received from the laboratory the dentist can fit it. The entire process can take anywhere from 6 to 12 months.
Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risk. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.share