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Implants

Dental Implant information

In the last decade dental implants have become widely used in mainstream dentistry and are usually the treatment of choice for a missing tooth, with the success rate for dental implants being around 95%.

What is a dental implant?

A dental implant is an artificial replacement for a tooth root, usually made from titanium. There are many different implant systems available and when competently used they all deliver a highly reliable form of treatment. The main aim during the placement of any implant is to achieve immediate close contact with the surrounding bone. Over time further growth of bone onto the implant surface enhances the stability of the implant.

In order to support replacement teeth, dental implants normally have some form of internal screw thread or post space that allows a variety of components to be fitted. Once fitted, theses components provide the foundation for long-term support of crowns, bridges or dentures.

Who is suitable for dental implants?

Dental implants are suitable for most adults with good general health. They can only be used once the jawbone has stopped growing and so generally are not used with younger patients.

Habits such as heavy drinking or smoking can increase the number of problems associated with initial healing and thereafter may be bad for the long-term health of gums and bone surrounding each implant. Some dentists will decline to place implants if smoking cannot be reduced or given up altogether. However, each case is different and if you do have any medical problems then speak to your dentist prior to starting treatment – it is only in some circumstances that health problems prevent the use of dental implants altogether.

An overview of the implant process

Implant treatment normally involves several stages that take place over a period of time from three to nine months. Although there are various implant treatment methods, a typical process often includes:

Assessment and treatment planning:

    At initial consultation, following full discussion of all possible alternatives, the dentist will assess the feasibility of providing implant treatment. X-rays and photos will be taken. A written treatment plan will then be formulated detailing the sequence of treatment and associated costs.

  • Implant placement:
    Implant placement is a relatively simple minor surgical procedure that can be performed under sterile conditions at our dental surgery. The treatment is performed under local anaesthesia with sedation if required. If, during assessment, the underlying bone is deemed deficient, a number of options are available for bone regeneration. Bone regeneration is carried out prior to or at the same time as implant placement depending on requirements.
  • Integration period:
    Implants can take from six weeks to six months to fuse with the patient’s bone. During this integration period, temporary dentures or bridgework can be worn as appropriate. In some cases, temporary teeth can be fixed to the implants while they integrate in a process known as ‘immediate loading’.
  • Restorative Phase:
    Once integrated, the implants can be brought into function with a varitety of new teeth options (definitive restorations) ranging from a single crown, small or large bridge or a removable overdenture. A dental technician who works closely with the dental surgeon constructs theses definitive restorations.
  • Maintenance:
    Following completion of implant treatment, the patient must regularly and thoroughly clean the new teeth (restorations) as instructed by their dentist. A dental hygienist may also advise on care and maintenance of the restorations and natural teeth. Regular visits to your dentist are essential so that the health of the soft tissue, bone levels and the integrity of the restoration can be reviewed.

Frequently asked Questions

Will I be able to eat what I like afterwards?
Once completed, patients should be able to eat a normal, healthy diet with little or no difficulty.

What costs are involved in implant treatment?
The cost can vary, depending on the degree and extent of treatment required. The full cost is therefore explained and confirmed in a written treatment plan from your implant dentist.

How long will it take?
Implant treatment usually requires a number of appointments over a period of months. In some cases, however, implant work can be completed in a much shorter period.

How long will it last?
Once treatment is completed, a regular routine of dental hygiene and regular check-ups should ensure that implants last for many years.

Am I too old for implant treatments?
There is no upper age limit for patients to undergo implant treatment, provided they continue to enjoy reasonably good health.

Is treatment painful?
Patients are often surprised at how little discomfort they experience during and after implant treatment.

Payment options available to me?
Payment costs can be spread across your course of treatment.
We also have finance available for patients with 12 months at interest fee or up to 60 months is available at a low APR rate of 9.9%.

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Affordable dentistry

At Keats House Dental Surgery we are an NHS/Private dental practice providing comprehensive dental care.

With four fully qualified dentists within the team, we take great pride in the level of care we provide, and we always welcome new patients to be registered.

Our state of the art newly refurbished dental surgery, complete with top of the range equipment, ensures that all your appointments will be held in comfort.

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