Dental Implants (What, Why, Procedure, Types, Costs, Pros & Cons)
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Despite several advancements in dental care, problems such as tooth decay, missing teeth, periodontal disease, and several other dental issues have become common for people today. All these dental problems lead to bad oral hygiene and multiple dental diseases.

However, unlike traditional times when only a few treatment options such as bridges and dentures were available, now the scope of treatment has widened.

Treatments like need to know about dental implants have made it possible to replace tooth roots and make your teeth strong again.

This blog is a detailed guide about dental implants and everything you need to know.

There is a significant connection between your jaw and teeth. The teeth roots are connected to the jawbone, which supports your facial profile. On loss of teeth, the jawbone slowly starts shrinking, resulting in losing bone and facial muscle support.

The face starts to collapse if the case is severe, and over time, you get multiple dental problems such as problems in chewing the food or speaking. Therefore, getting the right treatment for your teeth is extremely vital when a dental problem occurs to maintain good dental hygiene and stay healthy.

What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are titanium-made artificial structures designed to replace missing teeth. The dental implants are placed into the jawbone through a surgical fixture that naturally fuses the bone structure over time.

It is a screw-like structure that provides a space to add an artificial tooth known as the crown. The artificial tooth and the dental implant are connected using a device called an abutment. The crown is customised specifically according to your mouth and perfectly matches the colour of your teeth.

The functioning and the feeling of a crown is quite similar to that of natural teeth. In addition, the dental implant provides great stability to your teeth and ensures no neighbouring teeth get affected due to it. Overall, dental emergency implants act as a great innovation and treatment option for patients that suffer from tooth loss.

Why Do You Need Dental Implants?

Dental implants are an advanced dental treatment option used to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth, or all teeth. The fundamental goal of dental implants is to restore the teeth’ functioning and maintain their aesthetics.

Commonly, teeth replacement can be done using three dental procedures:

  • Dentures
  • Bridges
  • Implants

Dentures are the most economical option for teeth replacement and have been used for several decades now. However, they are highly inconvenient and affect the person’s taste and sensory experience.

On the other hand, dental bridges became an effective alternative to dentures until recently, when the demand for dental implants surged. The biggest limitation of dental bridges is they demand constant support from your natural teeth. When your natural teeth weaken with time, the bridges seem to fall off, creating multiple problems for the patient.

Here dental implants come into play as they are only supported through the jawbone, and that too naturally. Dental implants are usually needed on missing your natural teeth.

Are Dental Implants Suitable for All?

Unfortunately, dental implant treatment has limitations and is not suitable for all dental conditions. The following factors decide if you are fit to undergo dental implant surgery:

  • The location of the missing teeth.
  • The jawbone quality where the implant is to be installed.
  • The overall health of the patient.

A dentist thoroughly examines your mouth to determine if dental implants are suitable for you or not. If you maintain good oral sedation hygiene and have no or very few dental issues, there is a high probability for dental implants to be suitable for you.

A dental implant is a prominent choice because it can be installed without affecting the other adjacent teeth. Also, they are integrated into the bone structure that makes them highly stable and functional.

What are the Various Types of Dental Implants?

In general, dental implants are categorised into three basic types: Endosteal, subperiosteal, and zygomatic. Endosteal is the most common treatment type, followed by subperiosteal and zygomatic. Let us understand them in a more detailed manner.

Endosteal Implants

This is one of the most common types of dental implants. They are used for the majority of the patients but require a good and healthy jawbone structure for its functioning.

They are fitted into the missing tooth space into which the false teeth are integrated. Endosteal dental implants procedure take time, and the artificial teeth or crown is fitted only after the gums are healed from the implant surgery.

Subperiosteal Implants

The second most common dental implant treatment is subperiosteal implants which is an alternative to the endosteal implant. In this procedure, the implant, instead of fixing into the jawbone, is rested over the top of the bone. However, it still lies inside the gum line.

The process involves attaching a metal frame under the gums. After the gums secure the position of the metal frame, the false teeth are attached over it. This process is mostly required if a person has a weak jawbone or cannot undergo intensive oral surgery.

Zygomatic Implants

The third type of dental implant is a zygomatic implant. It is very rarely used due to its complex procedure. Only people with strong jawlines can undergo this procedure. In this dental treatment, the implant is placed in your cheekbone instead of the jawbone or gums.

This method is used when full teeth replacement is required and is designed for people with severe bone deficiencies. This choice is not preferred due to the risks of additional complications in the procedure.

Other Dental Implant Treatments

Apart from these common dental implant treatments, various other treatment options can be suggested by your dentist, such as:

Sinus Lift

This dental treatment procedure is used when the bone below the sinus has deteriorated due to the loss of upper back teeth. In this procedure, a bone is added below the sinus to lift it so that further dental processes can be carried out.

Ridge Expansion

Some people naturally have a small jaw that is not wide enough to insert implants. In such a case, your dentist grafts additional material to expand the ridge and create sufficient space for the addition of dental implants. Once enough space is generated, any of the three dental implant surgeries can be done.

Single Tooth Implants

Single-tooth implants are dental procedures in which a single tooth is replaced with a dental implant. They use a prefabricated abutment, or a custom-made abutment that is cemented to your jawline and the lost tooth is easily restored.

Mini Dental Implants

Mini dental implants are toothpick sized dental implants that are extremely narrow and are used to stabilise your lower denture. They are suitable for patients with small jawline structures and can not fit a full-size dental implant into their mouth.

All on 4 Dental Implants

All 4 dental implants are highly prominent dental treatment methods used to replace a full set of lower or upper teeth. The All on 4 treatment includes the addition of four dental implants in the already available bone in your jaw.

In this procedure, a temporary set of replacement teeth is added to your mouth on the same day. Once the gums are naturally healed, and the implants have bonded well with the bone structure, the permanent set of teeth are added.

Same-Day Dental Implants

This is an advanced dental technique in which the dental implant is fixed into your jawline on the same day of treatment. This is a suitable choice for patients with high bone strength and can support the pressure of additional temporary teeth on the implant.

What are the Benefits of Dental Implants?

There are several benefits of dental implant treatments such as:

  • Comfort: Unlike traditional dentures, dental implants provide better comfort.
  • Betterment in Eating: Implants function similar to your natural teeth and enable you to eat all kinds of food without any problems.
  • Improvement in Speech: Dental implants ensure you have a structured jawline and diminish all types of speech impairments.
  • Good Oral Health: The dental implants are fully independent and do not require alteration of any adjacent teeth. This promotes better long-term oral health.
  • Convenience: Dental implants become a natural part of your teeth and save you from any inconvenience you may face in other dental treatment methods.
  • High Durability: Dental implants are extremely durable and can last for a lifetime with the necessary dental hygienist cost.

What is the Process of Dental Implant Surgery?

The dental implant procedure is not as simple as it sounds. It can take extensive time to complete as it involves having multiple dental procedures.

Following are the steps carried out in dental implant surgery:

Dental Examination

The primary step involves a thorough examination of your mouth and teeth. The dentist will employ a CT Scan of your mouth to generate 3D images to assess your dental health. The check will help determine the current condition of your teeth and bones.

Removal of the Teeth

The second step in the procedure involves the removal of the tooth or teeth that need to be replaced by artificial teeth replacement. An oral surgeon or your dentist will perform this surgery which may take about 15-30 minutes depending upon the complexity of your case.

Bone Grafting

It is a procedure in which a bone is harvested from any other part of your body and added to the area where the dental implants are to be installed. It might only be required if you do not have sufficient bone to support the dental implant.

You will find out if you need bone grafting or not at the initial examination phase. Also, there are synthetic bone options available if you do not wish to extract the bone from elsewhere in your body.

Read more about grafting surgery and its process here!

Insertion of the Implant

After going through the bone grafting process, the dental implant procedure starts. The dentist places the implant into your jawbone by drilling a hole or making the required space into the jawbone structure.

Your jaw might need some time to get healed from the gum graft surgery. As the artificial tooth root or the dental implant is inserted deep into the bone, it may take about 2-3 months for the complete healing process.

Also, during this time, the process of osseointegration occurs, which means the bone naturally grows around the inserted implant. After insertion of the implant, your dentist will also provide you with a temporary denture to cover the gap between the tooth and the inserted implant.

Addition of the Abutment

Once enough bone has grown into your jawline and the inserted implant is naturally stabilised, an abutment will be added to the implant. An abutment is a device which connects the implant to the artificial tooth or crown.

The abutment is added to your gums through a small surgical procedure, and the gums are then closed around the edges. It may take around six weeks for the gums to heal, following which the next procedure will be conducted.

Insertion of the Crown

Finally, after months of several procedures, the actual crown or the artificial teeth will be added to the abutment in the implant. The crown will be specifically designed for your mouth and will match your other teeth’ colour, size, and shape.

How Painful is Dental Implant Surgery?

Dental implant surgery is performed under local anaesthesia, and therefore, no pain is felt at the time of the procedure. After coming back to your normal state, post-surgery discomfort will stay for a few days and vary for each case. To minimise your dental pains, the dentist may also prescribe you some pain-relief medicines such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

What are the Costs of Dental Implants?

The cost of implants varies depending upon the region you reside in the UK and the dentistry you choose. Following are the average costs for various dental implants:

  • The general cost of dental implants in the UK are £100 – £150 for initial consultations. The implant placement may cost you up to £1,250 – £1,500, and the crown price starts from £1,200.
  • The overall procedure cost for single tooth implants may cost around £2,800 – £3,000.
  • The average mini dental implants cost is around £500 – £1,500.
  • The All on 4 dental implants are expensive and may cost you a total of £10,000 – £15,000 per jaw.
  • The same day dental implants are economical and cost around £3,500 – £4,000.

Apart from these dental veneers costs, you may have to incur bone grafting and laser surgery costs of around £500 – £1,000. These are general costs and may vary depending upon the complications of your case. Hence, the best way to find out the actual price for your treatment is by getting your teeth examined by a professional dentist.

Will Insurance Pay for My Dental Implants?

Dental insurance policies generally do not pay for dental implant procedures. Dental implants are considered an elective procedure, and hence most insurance companies refrain from paying for dental implant treatment.

Here are a few prominent dental insurance companies in the UK region that can help you understand better about their dental policy details:

  • Dencover Insurance
  • WPA Insurance
  • AXA Insurance
  • Bupa Insurance
  • AXA PPP Healthcare
  • Simplyhealth

Does the NHS provide me with Dental Implants for Free?

Like various other insurance companies, the National Health Service (NHS) considers dental implants as cosmetic dentistry surgery and does not pay for the treatment. However, they may pay for the implants in case of an emergency or if there is an immediate need for the dental procedure.

You may consult the above-given insurances to help you provide better ways to undergo your treatment at much cheaper rates.

What are the Risks and Complications Involved in a Dental Implant Surgery?

Though it is not necessary for everyone who undergoes the dental implant procedure to face complications, there are chances of experiencing the following complications:

  • Movement of the dental implant.
  • Infection in the implant.
  • Exposure of the dental implant above the gumline.
  • Nerve damage can result in altered sensation in the operated area.
  • An opening of the incision after the surgery.

Below given are some of the symptoms that denote the failure of the implant placement:

  • Undesired movement in the implant.
  • Pus coming out of the implant.
  • Excessive pain while tapping the dental implant.
  • Progression in bone loss.

You must immediately consult your dentist if you face any of these symptoms.

Pros and Cons of Dental Implants

The following are the pros and cons of dental implants you need to know about:

ProsCons
Dental implants last for a lifetime with the necessary care.The restoration on the top of the implant may wear out after some time.
The implants improve your bone strength.The treatment isn’t possible if you have weak gum or bone strength.
They are the most cost-effective dental treatment.Initial investments are more as compared to other alternatives.
You can replace as many teeth as you wish.The process is long and time-consuming.
The implants are similar to your natural teeth and enhance your aesthetics.Though the chances are minimal, you may get an infection due to the surgery procedure.

How to Care for Your Dental Implant?

Follow up care is extremely necessary for a successful best dental implant procedure. Hence these are a few things you need to take care of after your dental implant procedure:

  • After the procedure, consume only soft foods and use ice packs to avoid swelling.
  • Switch to a soft nylon brush for regularly brushing your teeth.
  • Do not use abrasive toothpaste or mouthwash after the implant procedure.
  • Regularly floss and brush to avoid the accumulation of plague.
  • Avoid eating sticky and hard food products.
  • Do not smoke or drink alcohol.
  • Regularly visit the dentist for routine checkups.

Are there Special Dentists for Dental Implants Surgeries?

Any licensed dentist can execute dental implant surgery. Oral maxillofacial surgeons who have the expertise in conducting jaw surgeries and periodontists that treat gum and jawbone diseases are preferred choices for a dental implant placement.

The dentist that you choose must have adequate experience of performing dental implant surgery. You may ask for their experience and before and after treatment images of the patients to get sure if they are the right choice for you or not.

Where to Find the Best Dental Implant Treatment?

There are several dentistry options available that you can choose for your dental implant surgery. However, remember to consider the experience and expertise of the dentist in harrow while picking the right dentist for yourself. Complete Smiles is one of the finest dentistry in the UK region that has helped many patients with dental implant surgery, and look forward to serving more. You may get in touch with us for more information or to get an appointment for yourself.

Why Choose Complete Smiles

  • We're open 7 days a week with flexible opening hours
  • Highly qualified & patient-focused team with experienced dentist.
  • FREE internet access
  • Modern facilities with bespoke interior design
  • 0% interest-free finance plans available*
  • Spacious sitting area will put you at ease and is a great place to relax both before and after your dental treatment.
  • Over 940 Parking spaces at St Ann´s Car Park (£2.00 for 2 hours)
  • Non-judgemental diagnosis. We're not here to judge; all we want is to improve your oral health.

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