Restoring a smile with the next best thing to natural teeth. Dental implants use titanium posts placed in the jaw to support a replacement tooth or a bridge to replace multiple missing teeth. Implants act just like tooth roots and fuse to the jawbone, becoming a very long-lasting replacement.
Can I have an implant?
If you have enough bone volume, then having an implant will not be a problem. Your implant needs plenty of bone to fuse to, so we will first assess the health of your bone. If there has been any loss of bone tissue, we can use a bone graft to encourage the tissue to replenish. In some cases of severe gum disease, it’s necessary for us to replenish lost bone to help the structure and health of your jaw.
Why have an implant?
Teeth can be lost as a result of gum disease, dental decay and injury. Having a missing tooth can greatly impact oral function (chewing) and also self-confidence, especially if the gap is visible when you smile. While there are different options available for replacing missing teeth, implants are the best solution as they are long-lasting, secure, and integrate well with the bone. Implants are also incredibly versatile and can even be used to retain dentures.
What is involved in having an implant placed?
It takes several appointments for us to place an implant and restore a missing tooth. We start with an initial consultation where we discuss in detail your treatment plan and how long we envisage the treatment will take.
We take x-rays and scans of your mouth so we can get a clear picture of the bone in the area. It’s important that there is enough bone volume and density to support an implant. We use these x-rays and scans to locate the best spot area for us to place the implant. If we are replacing a single missing tooth, we will do our best to place the implant where the tooth root used to be.
Placing the implant
We always use anaesthetic and make sure you are completely at ease when having the implant placed. It normally takes a few months for the implant to fully fuse integrate with bone. Once it has healed, we arrange for the top of the implant to be exposed from the gum so we can take impressions of the area.
Preparing for the restoration
Whether you are having a crown or a bridge affixed to your implant, we will need to take impressions so we can create perfect replacement teeth. These impressions are then used by a dental lab where your new teeth will be made from tooth-like porcelain. Once they have been crafted and sent back to us, we arrange for the fitting.
Fitting the replacement teeth
The fitting makes the treatment worth the wait when you can see yourself with a full smile again. We test the fit of the crown/bridge before fitting it to make sure that you are happy with the end result. We then fix them in place to the implant abutment using a special dental adhesive.
Looking after your implants
Just like with natural teeth, implants will last longer if you keep up with a regular and thorough cleaning routine. While the replacement teeth are resistant to bacteria, the supporting gum tissue and bone are not. Keeping your mouth clear of bacteria will make sure your implants last just as long as your natural teeth.