If you have missing teeth and want a solution that is as close to nature as possible, dental implants could be your ideal choice. A dental implant is a titanium post which is used to replace the missing tooth root, allowing it to support a single tooth, multiple teeth or dentures. They are extremely comfortable and can look exactly like your natural teeth.

There are several advantages in opting for dental implants:

Comfort

Dental implants provide the most comfortable solution for missing teeth. The implant is a titanium post that is surgically positioned inside the jawbone, over which an artificial crown is mounted. Since the implant is fused to the bone, it feels more comfortable than dentures which are removable and can feel loose.

Cosmetic

A tooth attached to an implant offers the most life like replacement for a missing tooth. Because the implant is submerged within the bone and gum, the crown which is attached on top emerges out of the gum just like a natural tooth would.

Optimal oral hygiene and health

Unlike bridges which need to be supported by neighbouring teeth or dentures which need clasps or hooks around other teeth to help provide support, teeth on implants are supported by the implant alone. This means that other teeth are not affected and cleaning around the implant and other teeth is much easier. It also means that other healthy teeth do not need to be used or modified to place the bridge or denture.

Reliability and Longevity

Implants now have a long history of success (>95%) and are a highly reliable form of treatment. With diligent maintenance and care, both by you and your dentist, it is not unusual for teeth that are restored with implants to last decades and often a lifetime.

Confidence

When you have implants, they do not feel any different from your natural teeth. You can go about your daily activities without worrying about whether your teeth will be moving around in your mouth. With dental implants, you can smile, speak, and eat confidently.

The implant procedure

There are typically two stages in an implant procedure

Step 1: Your dentist will assess your mouth and bite to ensure that replacing a tooth or teeth with implants is a good option. This may involve taking some study models, photos and x-rays of your teeth. Once the site has been assessed to be suitable we can then proceed with implant placement.

Step 2: Placement of the dental implant is generally done under local anaesthetic and usually takes about an hour to complete. A small slit in the gum may be made to allow the implant to be placed into the bone. Once the implant is in position, stitches will be placed to secure the gum back in place. There is generally minimal discomfort associated with implant placement and mild pain killers like Panadol or Nurofen are usually all that is required afterwards.

Step 3: The implant is then left to allow the bone and gums to heal. This is usually a 10-12 week period.

Step 4: Once the healing period is over, we will then test the implant to ensure that it has healed well within the bone. An impression is then taken and you will then have another appointment two weeks later, when the crown will be attached to the implant.

Once the implant is in place, you can use it as you would your natural tooth.

If you feel that dental implants may be the right solution for your missing teeth, call us to make an appointment with one of our dentists and we can help you start the process.

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