What are Dental Implants

If you feel self-conscious about missing or damaged teeth, then dental implants could provide the perfect option to regain your lost confidence.

A dental implant is an artificial root (usually made of titanium) that are surgically placed directly into a patient’s jaw bone by a dentist or maxillofacial surgeon. A crown is then attached to the implant to provide a very stable and natural-looking tooth. It is almost impossible to tell the difference between a good implant and a real tooth.

Dental implants are both strong and durable and will last many years if cared for correctly.

Reasons to get a dental implant:

  • Restore a patient’s confidence.
  • Has the ability to replace a patient’s missing tooth without compromising the adjacent teeth.
  • Restore a patient’s speech, chewing and digestion.
  • Restore the aesthetics of a patient’s smile.
  • To support a denture or bridge, which will make them more comfortable and secure.
  • Ease bite problems or joint pain caused by missing teeth.

What are the prerequisites to Dental Implants?

If you wish to receive a dental implant, you need adequate bone structure to support the implant and have healthy gums. It is essential to commit to maintaining excellent oral hygiene and regular dental check-ups to ensure the long term success of your dental implant.

What is the process of getting a dental implant?

The process will usually take a minimum of 6 months from when you first decide to get your implant to where it is fully functional, like your normal teeth. This process will require several visits to Platinum Dental over that time.

During your visits, impressions and dental x-rays of your teeth and jaw will be taken to determine the condition of your gums and suitability of your jawbone for implants. Our specialist in Newcastle will later surgically place your implant into the jaw bone (it will take up to 6 months for the implant to fully heal and fuse with the bone). A couple of weeks after the implant has been placed, your gums will have healed enough to have a temporary tooth made and fitted to cover the gap. After the full six month healing period, the temporary tooth is removed, and your new artificial tooth is securely attached to the implant — this tooth will be comfortable, stable, and look extremely natural.

Your Platinum Dental dentist will provide you with instructions on how to best care for your implant after treatment is completed to ensure a quick healing process.

Advantages of Getting Dental Implants compared to other prosthodontics?

  • Because they are fused to your jaw bone, they are a permanent solution to missing teeth.
  • They look, feel and function in exactly the same way as your natural teeth.
  • Unlike dentures, they will not move in your mouth and don’t limit the food types you can eat.
  • They are incredibly comfortable compared to other prosthodontics.
  • They can last a lifetime with proper maintenance and care.

The alternative to dental implants is having a dental bridge or wearing dentures; however, these can come with complications. The real teeth you have in your mouth help to preserve your jawbone. When teeth are lost and replaced by a bridge or denture, you will often have associated jaw bone loss. Dental bridges and dentures also severely weaken your chewing forces, which can limit the types of food you wish to eat.

Fortunately, a dental implant acts in the same way as a real tooth and provides stability to the jaw bone without unnecessary damage to adjacent teeth. The fact that they are stable and act like real teeth means that you can eat all the food types you love with confidence. There will be no shifting of dentures and no concerns about breaking a bridge.

Dental Implants FAQs

Can a dental implant always be used to replace missing teeth?

Not always since it depends on the condition of your gums and jaw bone. We will test to make sure that you are suitable for an implant before suggesting it as an option.

How long will a dental implant last?

With excellent oral hygiene and regular check-ups, implants can last a lifetime. This is why they are an excellent long term option for your smile restoration.

How difficult is it to clean my implant tooth?

It’s not difficult at all. You clean your dental implant tooth in precisely the same way as you clean your other natural teeth. It is always advisable to brush and floss twice a day.

Can I smoke while I have Implants?

We don’t recommend it! Smoking can negatively affect your implant from healing and properly integrating with your jaw bone. If you do smoke, you will need to be extra careful in looking after your implants. If you are a heavy smoker, we will probably not advise getting dental implants.

Are implants obvious?

Most implants will look exactly like your natural teeth.

Do I require an implant for each missing tooth?

If you wish to replace several missing teeth, then sometimes, you will not require an implant for each tooth. If the missing teeth are adjacent, then it is possible that a fewer number of implants would be needed. If you have all your teeth missing, then you can usually support a full set of teeth with as little as four implants in total. Your dentist will discuss with you the options when it comes to replacing multiple teeth with dental implants.

What are the alternatives to dental implants?

The alternatives to a dental implant are to wear dentures or having a dental bridge.

If you would like to talk more about getting/service/bridges/ a dental implant, then please feel free to call or email our friendly reception team.

Smile Gallery – Dental Implants

Implant Bridge, Implant Crown

Patient presented currently having an existing crown on their front tooth but was unhappy with her smile and wanted gaps filled (while retaining her front left crown). Dr Lane used the combination on an implant bridge, implant crown and normal crown to achieve the desired results.