Dental implants: questions and answers

SPOTLIGHT ON DENTAL IMPLANTS

The clinical team at Philip Friel Advanced Dentistry has experience of a wide range of implant, cosmetic and restorative dentistry techniques – from whitening to complete dental/aesthetic rehabilitation – as well as offering a range of general dentistry services including routine maintenance, check- ups and hygienist appointments.

One of the greatest advances has been dental implant surgery and Philip and his team of dentists and dental nurses are highly trained in this aspect of advanced dentistry.

Implants have transformed dentistry over the last 40 years and are now often the first choice of treatment for the replacement of missing teeth.

artwork shown in our Glasgow clinic where dental implants are offered

Implants can make significant difference in function and appearance.

An implant is a titanium substitute for a natural tooth root and is placed into a socket created in the jaw. It is usually inserted into the socket creating an initial stability, which over time is steadily enhanced by further growth of bone on to the implant surface. The internal design of the implant allows a variety of fitments to be attached to it, which support replacement teeth, providing the foundation for long-term support of crowns, bridges or dentures.

As well as offering implants at his Glasgow dental clinic, Philip also offers dental implant surgery at the New Town Dental Care clinic in Edinburgh.

Here Philip answers many of the questions that can arise when someone is considering dental implants.

AM I SUITABLE FOR DENTAL IMPLANTS?

If you have good general health and maintain good oral health, then implants will almost certainly work for you.
It is rare to have health problems that will prevent the use of implants although some medical conditions may affect the success rate of implants.
As well as a complete examination of your mouth and remaining teeth you will be expected to supply details of your medical history.
In addition, full discussion with regards to requirements and expectations will allow us to determine if implant treatment is appropriate.

HOW MANY TEETH CAN BE SUPPORTED?

All the common forms of tooth replacement, such as bridges or dentures can be supported by implants. If you are missing just one natural tooth, the one implant will likely be all that is required – but larger spaces of two, three or more missing teeth will not necessarily need one implant per tooth.

WHAT ELSE CAN BE DONE WITH DENTAL IMPLANTS?

If you have no teeth in the lower jaw, a conventional lower denture can be considerably improved with an implant retained “over denture” which involves two implants placed at the front of the lower jaw to secure a denture. The same concept can be used in the upper jaw which requires four implants. Implants make dentures much more stable and also allow the denture to be smaller which means reduced palatal coverage by the denture.
Like conventional dentures, overdentures should be removed for daily cleaning. There are many implant options available and it is crucial that you have a thorough dental examination to be aware of what treatment would be best for you.

HOW LONG DOES TREATMENT TAKE?

For routine cases, from the time of implant placement to the placing of the first tooth, treatment times can vary between a few weeks to six months. The better the bone the less will be the treatment time. With poorer bone more time must be taken which can extend treatment time beyond six months.

HOW DO I TAKE CARE OF THE IMPLANTS?

You will be fully advised on care and maintenance of the implants or the superstructure they support. Instruction will include how to clean adequately. It must be understood that the adequate care and maintenance of the implants requires regular effort on the patient’s part at home for ideal maintenance.
It is recommended that implants be cleaned every three to six months by the dental hygienist depending upon individual case requirements.

HOW LONG WILL THE IMPLANTS LAST?

Once your implants and surrounding soft tissues are seen to be healthy and your new teeth are comfortable, it is the quality of your home care and willingness to present for regular maintenance reviews, that will most influence how long they will last.
Implants, much like natural teeth, will last longer if they are cared for adequately. Well-maintained implants, placed into adequate bone, can be expected to last for many years.

If you have any questions arising from the above blog or would like to find out more information about dental implant work carried out by our team please contact the clinic on 0141 339 7579