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Dental Implants Brighton

What are implants?

SmileWorks experienced dental team have been restoring dental implants for over 20 years and are providing these helpful facts about dental implants to help you decide whether dental implants are right for your unique situation.

There’s nothing as good as your own firm teeth, but if you have lost a tooth or teeth dental implants usually provide the best solution over other tooth replacement systems in that an implant connects directly to the jaw bone.

A dental implant is not the same as the original tooth but functions just the same. When a tooth is lost, bone loss will eventually occur in that region because the root is no longer stimulating and stabilizing the bone. By using titanium, which biochemically joins to bone, to replace the root, you get a bond that more accurately replicates that found in nature.

What can happen if I lose a tooth?

If you lose a tooth, especially a back tooth, you may feel you don’t need to replace it, since no one can see that it’s missing and you have plenty of other teeth. However, there is more bone loss going on under the surface once a tooth is lost. Surrounding each tooth is the alveolar bone that supports the tooth and when the tooth is lost, that bone gradually disappears. That’s why people who have lost most of their teeth and are not wearing dentures appear to have a caved-in aged appearance to their mouths.

As well as causing damage to the immediate area, tooth loss affects the remaining teeth as well. Teeth create a structure for the face and their loss can shift and tip the surrounding teeth, creating aesthetic issues and bite problems. A lost tooth can also affect facial structures such as the jaw, muscles, jaw joints, and even the skin. As a consequence if several teeth are lost it’s not uncommon to suffer social problems and medical conditions due to not eating well.

Rebuilding Lost Bone

When the supporting alveolar bone melts away, it’s gone for good, but through bone grafting, a skilled dental professional can recreate bone to fuse with and support an implant. This is wonderful news, but it is still best to have a dental implant as soon as possible after the tooth is lost for the most predictable aesthetic outcome.

When clients are considered to be suitable for a dental implant, a post is placed in the jaw bone to support a replacement tooth. This acts like the root of a natural tooth. Implants can also be used to support fixed bridges or dentures.

Implant treatment normally has two stages. First, the implant is placed in the jaw. Then, when the jaw has healed, replacement teeth are attached to the implant. In some situations it is possible for temporary teeth to be attached to an implant at the time of fitting.

If you decide to proceed with dental implant work, this is what will happen.

  • Implants are put into holes in the jaw under a local anaesthetic. You can opt to have sedation for this procedure too.
  • The implant is gently screwed in and the gum is stitched carefully so that it heals around the implant
  • Under the gum. the bone then grows round the implant to hold it firm. This takes several months.

Implants usually have two sections – the post in the jaw and an extension that is added later when the post is secure. You may have more than one implant and the replacement teeth might be fixed permanently (like a crown or bridge) or attached in a secure way which nevertheless lets you remove them easily for cleaning.

Timescales for Dental Implant Work

Replacing a tooth with an implant and a crown is not a one-day procedure. The implant needs time to properly adhere to the bone and create a healthy fusion before the crown can be attached and full bite force can be applied. In most cases, it will take a few months to complete the process.

Due to the time required, dental implants are actually a series of steps; each is very different and on occasions may require a team of dentists specialising in the placement and restoration of dental implants . The best place to start is with an experienced dentist.

Would implants be right for me?

First, you should decide whether implants could be right for you. Implants are one way of replacing missing teeth and are today frequently the treatment of choice in many missing tooth situations.

However, if you have lost your tooth or teeth due to gum and bone related problems you may be just as likely to lose a dental implant in the same way.

For this reason it is essential that your treatment is planned carefully by experienced clinicians who are knowledgeable in all the treatment options available to your unique situation.

Contact us to arrange an implant consultation and discussion and we will let you know the possibilities that are best for your unique requirements. Our knowledgeable team will also be happy to help you with any questions you may have.

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