Thinking about Dental Implants – How do they work?
Dental Implants are an artificial replacement for a tooth’s root. They fit directly into your jawbone and hold crowns or false teeth in place. They work in the same way as roots work with natural teeth.
A dental implant, which is usually cylindrical or a tapered post made of titanium, is placed surgically into the jawbone. As you heal, the implant will fuse with your natural jawbone, and the two grow together to form a very strong and long-lasting foundation for your replacement teeth. This fusing and healing process can take anything from a few weeks to a few months.
Once the implant fuses with the jawbone, a small connector called an abutment is placed on top of the dental implant to connect the implant to the replacement tooth or teeth. The individual tooth, dentures or an implant-supported bridge are then attached to the abutment.
So, you’ve decided to take the plunge; what happens next?
You’ll be asked to have some x-rays so that your dentist can check where your nerves are and the shape of your jawbone and decide where best to place the implant. If the x-rays do not provide enough information, you may require a CT scan.
You will more than likely be given local anaesthetic for the procedure, this completely blocks the pain in your mouth, but you will stay awake throughout the procedure. You may also be given a sedative, which can relax any anxiety you may feel and to help you completely relax.
Occasionally you may have to go into hospital and have a general anaesthetic, but this is fairly rare.
Aftercare of your dental implants
Your dentist will give you instructions on how to look after your implant, and they may give you some painkillers. Cleaning around the teeth attached to the implants is just like cleaning your natural teeth, but there may be some hard to reach areas, and you should be shown how to clean these areas.
You may need to visit your dental hygienist more often. If you look after your implants, they can last as long as your natural teeth.
Top tip – it is really important that the dentist who performs your procedure has had training in placing implants. Don’t be afraid to ask your dentist how much experience they have with fitting dental implants.
For further information visit our website at www.harpendensmiles.co.uk/dental-care/restorative-dentistry/dental-implants
Or call for a consultation or to book an appointment on 01582 280 745.
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