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Replacing missing teeth is important for an individual's oral health and overall health. Patients with missing teeth not only lose their ability to chew properly, but the gap can also cause the other teeth to tip, crowd and create other more serious problems.
While there are many methods to replace missing teeth, such as dentures and bridges, there is a better, more durable and lasting alternative: dental implants.
Many have hailed dental implants as the best form of tooth replacement. Patients who wear a full or partial denture, or are simply missing a single tooth, prefer this treatment to restore their smiles permanently.
In simple terms, dental implants are posts that support replacement teeth. They fit directly into the jawbone and hold false teeth in place-in the same way roots support natural teeth.
These are replacement tooth roots that screw into the jawbone. They are the only method of tooth restoration that replaces the root as well as the crown.
Titanium. This is a miraculous metal that bonds with bone. It is used in many surgical implants because of this. The body sees titanium as natural tissue and grows blood vessels and bone tissue around it. This secures the implant in place.
Implants can replace a single tooth, multiple teeth, a whole arch or an entire set of teeth, with denture stabilisation.
A single post can support a single crown, or up to three replacement teeth can be fixed onto one implant. A whole arch can fit onto two to four implants and a set of dentures can be stabilised with just four to six implants.
Implants can also be fitted into the cheekbone if there isn't enough density in the jawbone.
This initial stage is to assess your suitability for dental implants. Some patients require remedial or preparatory work before receiving implants. If you have any underlying gum disease this needs to be treated first.
You also need to have sufficient bone density in your jawbone to receive the implants. If you don't you could have a bone graft or sinus lift to build it up, or you could opt for zygomatic implants which are longer posts that fit into the cheekbone.
There are also lifestyle factors to consider – if you smoke we will ask you to quit or cut down and if you have uncontrolled type 2 diabetes, we will ask you to address this first. This is because dental implants are much more likely to heal properly in a non-smoker with controlled blood sugar levels. The last thing we want is for you to go to the expense and trouble of implant surgery only for it to fail. We can offer support and guidance to help with either of these issues.
This stage addresses the issues discovered in the consultation phase and includes bone graft surgery and treatment for gum disease.
You will be given a local anaesthetic and extra sedation if needed. Our implant dentist will drill a hole into your jawbone and screw the implant into place.
Your jaw will need to heal. This takes several weeks and it could be as long as six months. Once the implant is fixed in place, you then come back to have a replacement tooth fitted onto it. This tooth is specially crafted by our dental technicians to blend in with your existing set.
We have seen many patients who experience a fear of the dentist. We understand that having any kind of surgery can be frightening.
First off, some reassurance: dental implant surgery is a minor procedure, similar to having a filling, though less painful. This is because there are fewer nerve endings in the jaw than in the teeth. We will still always give you a local anaesthetic.
We can also offer conscious sedation to nervous patients. This comes either in the form of a tablet or as an injection. Either way, it produces a feeling of calm and relaxes the nervous system. You'll be awake during the surgery and able to respond to questions, but you may not remember it afterwards, and will need someone to drive you home.
We have more than 10 years' experience of fitting implants. Because this is a surgical procedure, albeit a minor one, it's important to see a dentist with the right qualifications and a proven track record in implant surgery. We also come highly recommended – by our patients! In a survey in 2017, 99% said they would recommend us to family and friends.
You look after dental implants just as you would your natural teeth. It's vital to take good care of them as disease-causing bacteria can still affect the gums and cause the implant to fail. Brush, floss and come for regular check-ups and your dental implants could last a lifetime.
Patients who opt for dental implants instead of other tooth replacement methods may enjoy the following:
Warrendale Dental Care has been the go-to practice for tooth implants in Herefordshire. We are an established practice with a proven track record, and we have been successfully placing dental implants in Ross-on-Wye for more than a decade now.
Enjoy your life to the fullest with the help of dental implants. Call us for a consultation on dental implants in Herefordshire.