What are dental implants?
Dental implants are the most natural way to replace missing teeth. An implant consists of a titanium screw that is placed into the bone in the gaps where teeth are missing. These screws will then be used to support the “new” teeth. Each implant does the job of an artificial root where, once it has naturally integrated into the bone, the new tooth will be permanently placed.
What are the advantages of implants compared to other types of treatment?
If all the teeth are missing, implants will give the patient new “fixed” teeth….this is much more comfortable and aesthetically pleasing.
If only one or a few teeth are missing, the patient’s real teeth do not have to be harmed by cutting or shaping in order to give support to bridges carrying false teeth (prosthesis). It is not necessary for implants to rely on neighbouring teeth, as they are just like real teeth in themselves. Therefore, implants have two basic functions: they look and feel like real teeth and they help maintain the health and duration of the patient’s other teeth.
What are the risks involved?
According to the latest research, the “osseointegration” (the fusion of the implant with the bone) is 95%-98% successful, if the implants used are of the highest quality, as those used in our clinic. A correct planning out of the treatment and proper, sterile, surgical surroundings are also vital. In most cases there is good osseointegration meaning that the tooth can be fitted in permanently after a couple of months. Meanwhile the patient wears a temporary bridge, so the implant process will not be noticed. If the implant does not bond with the bone successfully, the process can be carried out again. It does not mean the bone has rejected the implant, it means that there may be a lack of bone and the implant has become unstable.
When are implants considered necessary?
They are necessary if one or more teeth are missing. There is no age limit to the use of implants. In fact, with this treatment, older people need no longer wear false teeth.
Is the process of having dental implants painful?
Implants are placed in the mouth by using a local anaesthetic, so the process can be considered just like any other dental treatment. In the case of major surgery, or the placement of many implants at the same time, we have an expert anaesthetist attending, who will give intravenous anaesthetic.
How long does the implant treatment take in total?
Normally it is necessary to wait two months before fitting the permanent teeth. During this time the patient wears a temporary bridge, either fixed or not, depending on the patient’s preference. In some cases it is necessary to wait longer than two months if the bone quality is in a bad state, or if techniques have been used to regenerate the bone.
How can both implants and teeth be fitted in just one day?
In extreme cases when it is considered necessary for the patient’s well-being, it is possible to extract the necessary teeth and insert the implant and fixed teeth in 24 hours. This will only be possible if the condition of the maxillary bone and the possible stability of the implants allow this process to be carried out. As soon as the implants are inserted, impressions will be taken of the patient’s mouth and the laboratory will make provisional teeth that will be fixed on to the implants within 24 hours. Taking into account that the osseointegration of the titanium implant will still take from 2 to 6 months, the patient will have to eat a soft diet and not put force on the teeth that have been fitted and thus endanger the implant.
Can an implant be fitted on the same day that the tooth is removed?
Yes, it is possible to fit implants on the same day as the teeth are extracted, but obviously each individual case must be evaluated by the specialist.