The procedure done to replace tooth roots with metal and screw-like posts is called dental implant surgery. A dental implant is used to support one (or more) false teeth. A dental implant is a titanium screw that can replace the tooth’s root when it fails. Similar to a tooth root, a dental implant is also placed into the jawbone.
Dental implants are placed in the jawbone surgically and will serve as the root of the missing teeth. Since titanium fuses with the jawbone, implants won’t slip, cause bone damage, or make noise.
In general, dental implants may be the best option for you if:
- You have one (or more) missing teeth
- You have a jawbone that has reached full growth
- You have adequate bone to secure the dental implant
- You have healthy oral tissues
- You are unable or unwilling to wear dentures
- You have a health condition that can affect healing of the bone
- You are willing to commit several months to the procedure
- You don’t smoke
How long will it take to complete the procedure?
Your dentist will be able to give you a rough timetable before the treatment commences. To be sure, consider it best to check with your dentist. Nowadays, some false teeth are fitted at the same time as the implants. These are referred to as “immediate implants.”
You can check with your dentist if immediate implants are suitable for you and your case. In general however, false teeth is fitted at least 3 to 4 months after the implants have been placed.
In some instances however, the treatment can take longer so speaking to your dentist is recommended in order for you to have a better insight of the timetable for your case.
How long will dental implants last and are they safe?
Dental implant surgery is a well-established and safe procedure. Just like natural teeth, dental implants can last for a very long time given that you care for them accordingly. Observing regular maintenance appointments and how well your implants are taken care after will have the most impact on its longevity.
If you don’t look after your implants, they can end up having a coating similar to what you get on natural teeth that’s neglected. Left untreated, it can result to soreness, bleeding, gum infection and general discomfort.
However, if the implants are given proper care and if the bone they are fitted into is healthy and strong, you can expect the implant to last for many years.
Will dental implants hurt?
In most cases, placing an implant is a lot easier than taking the tooth out. The procedure is also often carried out using a local anaesthetic. That being said, it is expected that you will not feel any pain during the procedure.
In some cases, you might be given a sedative if your case is a complex one or if the surgery itself makes you extremely nervous. However, it is very rare for general anaesthetics to be used for dental implant surgery. Often, it is only used for complicated cases.
Is it difficult to clean dental implants?
The answer is no. However, to ensure the long-term success of your implants, proper aftercare is important. Your dentist will be able to provide detailed guidance on how to best look after your implants.Fortunately, cleaning the implant is no more difficult that cleaning your natural teeth. Your dentist will also give recommendations on how to clean hard to reach areas.