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Dental Implant

A  dental implant is a replacement for a missing tooth.It is categorised at prosthetic dentistry although it is also viewed as a form of cosmetic dentistry.

Dental implants are an important treatment for preventing bone loss which is a common side effect of a  missing tooth.If there is gap between the teeth then what tends to happen is a failure of the bone tissue  to renew itself which causes it to atrophy.This can affect  the shape of the jaw and facial apperaence resulting  in a sunken cheeked look which is less than attractive .

But this can be prevented by a dental implant.The implant is situated within  the bone of the jaw where it stimulates new bone growth  and retains the structure  of your jaw.

Dental implants  have increased in popularity and are seen as an ideal solution to missing teeth or are used to help fix a denture in place. In fact  dental implants are fast over taking dentures and bridges as the preferred form  of treatment for missing teeth.

WHAT IS DENTAL IMPLANT

A  dental implant is  a small metal rod which acts as  a replacement  for the root of a tooth.I

t is made from titanium  and is inserted into a drilled socket within your jaw to enable the fitting of a replacement tooth (crown) bridge or dentures.A small  connection  device known  as an ‘abutment ‘ is fastened to the implant which then allows the fitting  of the crown or bridge.

The number you require  depends on the extent of bone loss and your personal preferences.

ADVANTAGES OF   A DENTAL IMPLANT

1-) Attractive, natural looking apperaence

2-) No need for the drill  or a tooth extraction

3-) Prevents the risk of bone loss

4-) Improves oral hygiene

Functions as well as a natural tooth.

HOW IS  A DENTAL IMPLANT FITTED?

Implant placement procedure  can be performed under local anesthesia although in some cases a general anesthetic is required.

The insertion of  a dental implant involves several stages .

The process starts  withour  experienced  dental surgeon checking the state of your teeth and gums  and taking an x-ray .You undergo a bone  scan as well to assess the density of bone in your jaw.

1.Insertion of dental implant

A small incision is made  in the gum.The gum is lifted  to one side  which allow access to the  jaw bone. The dentist then drills a small hole  in the jawbone  ready for  the placing of the implant .This hole is gradually enlarged to enable the implant to fit firmly and snugly.The implant is then inserted to this hole and the gum replaced over this implant .It is stitched  back in place and  a protective cover placed over it enable to heal.

2.Osseointegration

We wait for 3-6 months for  the procedure known as   ‘osseointegration ‘takes place in which the implant fuses with the bone of the jaw.

3.Fitting of the Crown

Once this time has  passed the  surgeon will   revisit the site of  the implant  and attach a post or abutment to the implant. This is a junction between the implant and the false tooth(restoration).He then attach a temporary false tooth to the abutment.

Around 6 weeks later the dentist will then replace this  with  a permanent tooth.

HOW LONG DENTAL IMPLANTS LAST?

Dental implants last for many years in fact they can last  for up to 30 years which is why they are a poular form of treatment.Bu thry are stil vulnerable to bacterial plaque accumulation and other dental problems in the same way as natural teeth so need to be cared for even more than your own natural teeth.

CAN ANYBODY HAVE A DENTAL  IMPLANT?

Most people are suitable for an implant but there a few  exceptions .These includes smokers,people who suffer from bruxism(teeth grinding), people with periodontal gum disesase, alcoholics and drug addicts.