What are dental implants?
A dental implant is a titanium rod which is placed into the jawbone like the root of a tooth. It is used to support one or more false teeth.
Are implants safe? How long will they last?
Implants are a well-established, tried-and-tested treatment. 95% of modern implants can last between 15-20 years.
I have some of my own teeth. Can I still have implants?
Yes. You can have any number of teeth replaced with implants – from one single tooth to a complete set. The advantage of an implant, unlike a bridge, it does not need to anchor to the adjacent tooth. However, special tests may need to be carried out if additional treatment is required such as bone grafting or a sinus lift.
Do implants hurt?
Placing implants is usually a minor oral surgery procedure and is normally carried out under local anaesthetic. You will not feel any pain at the time, but you may feel some discomfort during the week following the surgery whilst the healing process takes place.
Can I have the new teeth straight away?
No. The implants need to integrate with the bone after they have been placed. This usually takes 3-6 months, however you will have a temporary replacement in the interim.
How long does treatment take?
It takes between 6 – 12 months from the initial assessment to the time when the artificial teeth or dentures are finally attached to the implants. However, this also depends on how complex the treatment is.
Are the teeth difficult to clean?
Cleaning around the teeth attached to the implants is no more difficult than cleaning natural teeth.
Are there any complications?
In a few cases implants may not integrate to the bone and can become loose. The dentist will go through the risks and benefits of all treatments during the consultation.
Is the treatment expensive?
Yes it can be. However, in many situations, the cost of the treatment is only a little more than the cost of more conventional treatment with crowns and bridges. The advantages are better long term outcome as well as less destructive to your adjacent teeth.