Dental implants are an efficient and long-term solution for replacing missing teeth. Dentists fuse them with the jawbone to mimic the root of a missing tooth and later, an artificial cap is placed over the top. Dental implants in Herefordshire can support crowns and dentures almost the way a natural root supports a tooth. Whether a client has lost a tooth by accident or it has been the result of poor hygiene, artificial teeth are a long-lasting and secure method of replacement and can in some instances, completely transform a person’s confidence.
Who can get implants?
Only after an examination would a dentist be able to determine if a client is suitable for artificial teeth, but usually anyone with good health qualifies. Dentists assess the condition of a client’s mouth and analyse the quantity and quality of the bone to see whether implants are an appropriate treatment or whether something else would be more suitable. In many cases, X-rays are taken to indicate how much bone is available for implants to be attached to.
How many implants are needed?
The number of implants required depends on how many teeth each patient needs replacing. This will be determined during an examination and will usually be followed by X-rays to determine whether the bone is strong enough in those areas.
Do they hurt?
Most dentists would explain that fitting artificial teeth is relatively straightforward and can be performed under general anaesthetic. Some minor discomfort may be experienced, but dentists will usually prescribe painkillers to relieve the soreness. In general, most patients report no pain whatsoever!
How long does surgery take?
The length of time will depend on the complexity of the case at hand and the number of implants that need fitting. In most cases, it takes approximately one hour to fit one tooth, so this would be the minimum length of time. Similarly, if a patient lacks sufficient bone for the implant to be fused, creating a replacement would also take longer.
How long do they last?
Unbeknown to most, implants are in fact very similar to natural teeth in the way they look and function. As a result, they should last many years, but this can vary depending on an individual patient’s habits, hygiene and maintenance of them. Implants usually last for around 25 years if the procedure runs smoothly, but there is a very small chance, 1%-2%, that the implants may fail to fuse with the bone, and in that case they would have to be removed and reattached several weeks later.
What if there isn’t enough bone?
Most dentists would argue that the key to successful artificial teeth is due to the quality and quantity of the bone they will be fused with. However, patients lacking strong or healthy bone in their jaw need not worry; replacements can usually be created in this situation too.
How are they maintained?
Artificial teeth should be managed the same as regular teeth, which means regular check-ups, cleaning twice a day and flossing. Patients are also advised to go for a yearly implant review whereby a dentist carefully inspects the quality of the bone and surrounding gums.