Image of surgery being performed

Dental Implants - The Procedure

It begins with a preliminary examination to decide whether implant treatment is a good solution in your case. We will explain what a dental implant is and you then have a diagnostic examination where scans and x-rays are taken to calculate the volume and quality of bone available. We also determine your general health and the condition of any existing natural teeth. It is essential that any dental problem, other than the one we are concerned with, be cleared up before implant treatment can begin.

Dental Implants - Replacing One Tooth

Replacing One Tooth - Step 1
Step 1

The need to replace a missing tooth could be the result of an accident, dental disease or because there was no formation of an adult tooth (congenital absence).

Replacing One Tooth - Step 2
Step 2

A titanium dental implant is painlessly inserted into the jawbone. The operation can be carried out under local anaesthetic, with or without sedation. You can also choose to have a general anaesthetic in hospital. No healthy teeth are affected or damaged. With other replacement solutions, adjacent teeth might need to be ground down to support a bridge.

Replacing One Tooth - Step 3
Step 3

The gum above the implant is opened so that an abutment or post can be fitted into the implant itself. This post projects through the gum and makes a link between the implant and your new teeth (prosthesis). This procedure requires a local anaesthetic and again, is quite painless. It is usual to allow a period of about two weeks for healing and the surgical part of the procedure is complete.

Often it is possible for the abutment to be connected at the same time the implant is placed, thus negating the need for this second minor surgical procedure. A crown is then placed on the abutment, fitting perfectly at the edge of the gum.

Replacing One Tooth - Step 4
Step 4

The new tooth is now complete and it is virtually impossible to see the difference between the existing teeth and the new tooth. However occasional differences do occur in the contour of the gum.

Surgery time is dependent on how many dental implants are being inserted and whether any bone grafting is required. A small amount of pain and swelling is normal in the first week after surgery. After a week the stitches are removed and the gum returns to normal within a day or two.

Dental Implants - Healing Period

The dental implants begin to literally fuse with the jawbone within the first 3 weeks post-operatively. You will not be aware that this is happening. Healing takes about three months for the implant to be fully integrated.

The Prosthetic Treatment

We work as a team, with our technicians, to construct your new teeth. This prosthetic treatment might be anything from a single tooth replacement to a full jaw restoration. It might even be an implant retained denture.

We begin by taking an impression of your jaws and implants. This impression is then made into a three dimensional model which is used to construct your new teeth. As work proceeds you will be able to try out what will eventually be your new teeth. These are fabricated from gold with either acrylic or ceramic material. Adjustments take place until everyone is completely satisfied with the result. Finally your new finished prosthesis is inserted and the work is complete.

Dental Implants Explained | Replacing Several Teeth | Replacing All Teeth | Looking After Your Teeth

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