If you have lost a tooth, or a number of teeth, it is comforting to know that with the use of a dental implants you can replace the tooth with a complete restoration.
What are dental implants?
They are small metal screws which act as replacement roots and can be used to support single restorations, dentures or dental bridges. They will either be tapped into place in the jaw bone or screwed in. This helps prevent bone loss and gives a secure anchor for the restorations.
How long do implants last for?
On average you can expect an implant to last somewhere between 15 to 20 years. They can be used to replace a single tooth or a series of teeth.
How long does the treatment take and when will I be able to have my new teeth?
The average treatment time for implants is 3 months. The implants can usually be fitted the same day as an extraction, however it takes time for the implants to integrate into the jaw bone. This process can take anywhere from 6 to 10 weeks and will vary from patient to patient. Only once the dentist is satisfied that the implant is securely bedded in the jaw bone will they fit the restoration.
If the implants are being used to secure dentures, they can be used immediately.
What if the implant doesn’t integrate?
It is very rare for an implant to fail, however if this does happen it can be re-inserted. If this does not work then a dental bridge will be the next recommended step.
How do I clean the implants?
If the implants have been fitted to help secure a set of dentures then they will need to be cleaned in the same manner as natural teeth. If they are used to anchor a restoration they will not be cleaned directly as the restoration can only be removed by the dentist.