Why might I need an implant?
A dental implant is a fixed solution for one or more missing teeth, and can help restore both your smile and your quality of life.
An implant is made up of an artificial titanium root that is fixed to the jawbone, with a crown or bridge fitted on top. They can be made to look and feel just like natural teeth. If you are concerned about your replacement teeth looking realistic or coming loose, implants are an ideal option.
Implants also safeguard your overall dental health. Replacing missing teeth is extremely important, as missing teeth cause bone loss which can age your face, and could potentially cause adjacent teeth to become loose too.
The benefits of implants
- Implants look and feel just like natural teeth – you shouldn’t notice any difference.
- Implants provide permanent stability and comfort without affecting healthy teeth.
- Implants won’t come loose or fall out.
- Implants can last for many years if you maintain good oral hygiene.
- Implants prevent ageing bone loss, by stimulating your bone structure and stabilising the surrounding teeth.
What types of implants are there?
There are several different types of implant available depending on your needs. Your Haslemere Dental & Implant Clinic dentist will discuss all the options with you to find the best solution.
Single dental implant: An implant is a great choice for a single missing tooth, whether it’s visible or not, and the results can be life-changing. A single implant provides the foundation for a crown, which will be created to match your teeth exactly.
Multiple dental implants: If you’re missing more than one tooth, there are a number of options available to you. In some cases a single implant can support two replacement teeth, or two implants can support a fixed bridge if you have several missing teeth. A bridge is a long-lasting, natural-looking solution which will help preserve the health of the rest of your teeth and jaw.
All teeth missing: While removable dentures have previously been a common choice, using them can be impractical and uncomfortable, and can limit your food choices. Implants and crowns are a permanent, fixed solution designed to restore your whole smile, so you can carry on with life as normal. Several implants will be needed to support bridges to replace your teeth.
Implants can also be used as an anchor for dentures, offering an economical, secure solution that will give you the ability to eat, speak and smile with confidence. These are called overdentures, and they work by enabling you to securely ‘press stud’ your dentures into place.
How is an implant fitted?
Assessment: Every treatment begins with an assessment from your local Haslemere dentist who will be performing your implant treatment. They will discuss all the options with you, make an assessment of the best solution for you, and ensure you understand every step of your treatment. You will have an x-ray and, in some cases, a CT scan to help visualise your jaw, ensure your gums are healthy and that there is enough jaw bone to place the implant.
The treatment: This is when the implant is placed into your jaw. It’s a straightforward process which can be completed under local anaesthetic. If you are particularly nervous or have a dental phobia, your dentist will make sure you feel absolutely comfortable with the treatment, and can provide sedation if needed.
The implants will need three to six months to heal and integrate with your jaw bone to provide a solid support for the crown or bridge.
Depending on your treatment and your dentist’s diagnosis, a temporary crown can be fitted at the same time as your initial appointment. Same day teeth is a modern procedure which enables you to walk out of the clinic with brand new teeth in just one day. These will stay in place until the final restoration appointment.
Once your jaw has healed, your dentist will take an impression of your mouth. This enables a dental technician to build your bespoke crown or bridge, which will be colour matched to blend seamlessly with your other teeth.
Restoration:It may be necessary to have a separate appointment between six weeks and six months after your initial treatment, to allow the implant to fully integrate. This ensures that your jaw has completely healed before the crown or bridge is permanently fitted.
Your smile is now complete.
How do I look after my implant?
As with natural teeth, good oral hygiene is important for preventing gum disease and prolonging the life of your implants. You do not need to remove the teeth fitted to your implants, but clean them as you would your natural teeth. A high standard of daily care, along with regular check-ups with your local Haslemere dentist and hygienist, will help to ensure your mouth stays healthy and your implants last as long as possible.
Contact Haslemere Dental & Implant Clinic in Haslemere today to find out more about dental implants and how they could work for you.