At Vermont South dental we understand that the loss of a tooth can not only have an impact on your confidence and self-esteem, but it can also cause oral and overall general health concerns. Dental Implants are a good option for people who have lost a tooth/ teeth due to an injury, disease or decay. Just about the only limitation is the amount of bone available.
What is a Dental Implant?
A dental Implant is a titanium fixture in the shape of a screw which is placed into your jaw to act as an artificial tooth root. This part of the implant holds the replacement tooth or bridge in place. Over time the dental implant bonds with the bone to serve as an anchor for the replacement tooth.
Benefits of using Dental Implants
- Dental Implants are permanent and stable. The implant is placed directly into the bone, acting like natural tooth roots.
- They don’t rely on neighbouring teeth for support.
- Dental implants are a good solution to tooth loss as they look and feel like natural teeth
- Security and confidence in knowing your teeth are stable while eating and speaking properly
- Dental implants are designed to look and function like natural teeth
- Your smile and confidence will improve after the replacement of your missing tooth.
- Having the freedom of not worrying about a denture and problems associated with it. For example shrinkage of the jawbone, which may cause one’s face to look older.
Why get a Dental Implant?
By NOT addressing the missing tooth, the following complications may arise;
- Adjacent teeth on either side of the gap may move
- Opposing teeth on the upper or lower jaw could move out of alignment
- Bite and jaw alignment problems may develop.
- Overtime soft gum tissue recedes and bone shrinkage can cause a prematurely aged appearance
Currently this is the prefered method for teeth restoration as opposed to dentures or bonded bridges as they are permanent. Therefore there should be no shifting, breaking or falling out.
Can anyone have Dental implants?
The dentist will have a discussion with you, to ascertain if you are an implant candidate. You must be in good health, have proper bone structure and healthy gums for the implant to stay in place. In addition to this, people who are unable to wear traditional dentures may also look at implants as an option.
How successful are Dental Implants?
Studies have shown a 5 year success rate of 95% of implants for the lower jaw and 90% for upper implants.
It's important to note, that although dental implants are not susceptible to cavities, it is vital to maintain good oral hygiene to avoid problems such as gum diseases. If you are a smoker you will be advised to stop smoking before undergoing the process. As smokers have a high risk of Dental implant failure. Ultimately the success rate of an implant can depend on the tooth’s purpose and location in the mouth, as well as the patients overall health and oral hygiene.
What is the Cost of Dental Implants?
Dental Implant placement involves surgery, requiring a sterile environment. This means the dental surgery needs to be set up similar to an operating theatre. Because of this, the cost of dental implants are more than the traditional bridgework or dentures.
Patients agree the benefits of Dental Implants by far outweigh the cost.
Its worth noting that some dental procedures and portions of the restoration may be covered by your health insurance.
How long will this process take?
This procedure is usually a 2- step process. see - FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Receiving a dental implant requires quite a bit of preparation, planning and a period of time for OSSEOINTEGRATION. Basically, osseointegration, is where the implant and bone bond together forming an anchor for your new tooth.
Depending on your oral and general health, the process from receiving the implant, bonding the jawbone, through to receiving your new teeth can take between 3- 6 months.
After your initial consultation our dentist will be able to give you a more accurate timeframe.
A Common Timeline of the Dental Implant Process is as follows
Initial consultation / quotation
You will meet with the dentist and you will be given a treatment plan outling your treatment and costs.
Discussion and acceptance of Dental Implant-
Ct Scan - You will be given a referal to get a CT scan done at least two weeks before your next appointment.
Discussion Along with the Ct Scan A thorough examination of your soft and hard tissues will be done, which will ensure there is enough bone structure and gum thickness to support your new implant. Based on these findings your next appointment can be scheduled for the right time.
Placement of the Implant Abutment - A small pilot hole is drilled into the space where the tooth is missing to guide the titanium screw that will be responsible for holding the implant in place. The hole is then gently widened in order to allow placement of the implant screw.
A protective cover screw is then placed on top to allow the site of the implant to heal and for osseointegration to take place.
Temporary placement of a Crown
For teeth located in the visible area, a temporary tooth replacement is provided. This will enable you to retain full mouth function and smile appearance. In some cases this temporary solution may be in the form of a temporary denture.
Placing of a Dental Implant is now a routine procedure performed under a local anaesthetic. This whole process can be done here at Vermont South Dental. This eliminates costly referrals to specialists and dealing with more that one practioner. Many patients report having very little to no discomfort and often return to work or their normal routine the next day.
You may experience slight post-surgical soreness and some swelling, this often can be relieved with general over the counter pain relief medication and a cold compress on the outside of the cheek.
Healing / Bonding Time
Following the placement of your implant, it is left to bond naturally (osseointegrate) with your jawbone.
- After 3 to 6 months the protective cover is removed and a temporary crown, bridge or denture is placed on top of the dental implant.
Permanent Crown placement
Once healed, the third phase of your treatment will involve removing your temporary restorations and replacing them with your new permanent crown, bridge or denture. These will be made here at Vermont South Dental or by one of our dental technician labs.
After an impression of your mouth has been taken, a shade match will be done. When this has been checked and approved, your tooth/ teeth will be secured to your implant. Over time the gum will shape itself around the crown tooth replacement. Then you will be able to enjoy a rejuvenated, healthy and natural looking new smile.
Poor oral hygiene is a big reason why some implants fail. Caring for your implant is just as important as caring for your natural teeth.
It is important to floss and brush around your new teeth at least twice a day.
Your dentist will give you specific instructions on how to care for your new implant which will be similar to normal oral hygiene habits. Additional review appointments may be advised of up to 4 times in the first year where the dentist may clean around your implant. This will ensure healthy gums for you and the longevity of your implant.