How do Dental Implants work?
Dental Implants are a popular solution for those who have lost a tooth or multiple teeth due to injury, decay, or other reasons. They offer a long-lasting and durable replacement option that looks and functions like natural teeth. In this article, we will discuss how Dental Implants work, the different types of Dental Implants available, and how they can benefit you.
What are Dental Implants?
Dental Implants are artificial tooth roots that are surgically placed into the jawbone. They are made of titanium or other biocompatible materials that fuse with the bone over time, providing a stable base for a replacement tooth or bridge. Dental Implants are a great alternative to traditional bridges and dentures, which can be uncomfortable and require regular maintenance.
How do Dental Implants work?
The dental implant process typically involves several stages. First, the implant is placed into the jawbone during a surgical procedure. Over the next several months, the implant will fuse with the bone in a process called osseointegration. Once the implant has fully integrated with the bone, an abutment is attached to the implant, which serves as a connector between the implant and the replacement tooth or bridge. Finally, the replacement tooth or bridge is attached to the abutment.
What happens during Dental Implant surgery?
Dental implant surgery is typically performed in several stages and can take several months to complete. Here’s an overview of what you can expect during each stage:
- Initial consultation: During your first visit to the dental clinic, your dentist will examine your mouth, take X-rays digital scans and a CT scan. He will then digitally plan the surgery and produce a 3-D printed surgical guide which will ensure the perfect placement of the dental implant.
- Implant placement: The first stage of surgery involves placing the dental implant into the jawbone. This is typically done under local anaesthesia, but could also be performed under sedation. Your dentist will make a small incision in your gum tissue and create a small hole in the jawbone. The implant will be inserted and the gum tissue will be sutured.
- Osseointegration: After the implant has been placed, it will take a few weeks for it to fully integrate with the jawbone in a process called osseointegration. During this time, you will need to avoid putting pressure on the implant by avoiding hard or sticky foods.
- Replacement crown or bridge: After this healing process, the replacement tooth or bridge will be attached to the implant. This may involve creating an impression or scan of your mouth to create a custom-fitted replacement crown or bridge.
Aftercare for Dental Implants
After your dental implant surgery, it’s important to take good care of your mouth to ensure proper healing and prevent complications. Here are some tips to help you care for your Dental Implants:
- Follow your dentist’s instructions: Your dentist will provide you with specific instructions on how to care for your Dental Implants, including how to brush and floss around them. Follow these instructions carefully to ensure proper healing.
- Practice good oral hygiene: Brush your teeth twice a day and floss at least once a day. Electric toothbrushes are more efficient and less aggressive than manual brushes.
- Avoid hard or sticky foods: For the first few weeks after surgery, avoid hard or sticky foods that could damage your Dental Implants or disrupt the healing process.
- Don’t smoke: Smoking can delay the healing process and increase the risk of complications. If you smoke, try to quit or cut back as much as possible.
- Attend follow-up appointments: Your dentist will schedule follow-up appointments to monitor your progress and ensure that your Dental Implants are healing properly. Attend these appointments as scheduled and let your dentist know if you experience any problems or concerns.
Caring for your Dental Implants
Once your Dental Implants have fully healed, it’s important to continue practicing good oral hygiene to keep them healthy and prevent complications.
By following these tips and practicing good oral hygiene, you can help ensure the long-term success of your Dental Implants and enjoy a natural-looking and functional smile for years to come.
Benefits of Dental Implants
Dental Implants offer several benefits over traditional tooth replacement options, including:
- Stability of the rest of the dentition
- Improved appearance and self-esteem
- Better oral health
- Improved speech and chewing function
- Durability and longevity
- Convenience and comfort
If you are interested in learning more about Dental Implants and how they can benefit you, contact our team at Wimpole Street Dental Clinic. Our experienced dental professionals can help you determine if Dental Implants are the right choice for your needs and help guide you through the treatment process.
ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Clinically reviewed by: Prof Dr Christian Mehl
Written by: Dr Raul Costa
About the author:
Dr Raul Costa is a restorative dentist with a unique set of skills for dental aesthetics and a drive for ultra-conservative techniques. He qualified from the Lisbon Dental School in 2005 and has been practicing in London since 2008. He works with world-renowned ceramists in order to deliver natural-looking, life-like, crowns and veneers. He is also particularly talented and experienced with composite bondings and implant-supported restorations.