Implants are often the ideal solution for replacing single or multiple missing teeth. Although they are not suitable for everyone, if you are in good general health and have good bone levels in your mouth, implants can be very successful and are a good long-term option for restoring your smile.
A dental implant is a biocompatible screw (often titanium) that is surgically placed into the jawbone to replace the root of a missing tooth. This screw can be used to support a false tooth (crown), bridge or denture. The finished implant-crown is designed to blend in with your other teeth. Single or multiple implants can be placed depending on how many missing teeth you need to replace. At Cornelscourt Dental, Dr Aislinn Machesney places implant systems from reputable companies only (e.g. Neodent, Straumann and Nobel Biocare), which have many decades of evidence based research to support their success.
Although the length and nature of every treatment will vary in order to accommodate each patient’s unique needs, you can use this information as a general guide. In some cases where there is insufficient bone levels, bone grafting would be recommended prior to implant placement.
Implant placement: Firstly, the dentist will usually use a form of local anaesthetic to ease discomfort and then surgically place the implant (‘screw’) into your jawbone.
Healing: After the implant is placed, your jaw will need time to heal and for the area around the implant to integrate into its structure. This usually takes a few months. Your implant will be covered with a healing cap, and you may have stitches to seal over the gum.
Temporary Teeth: During the healing process, we may provide you with a temporary bridge, crown, or denture before the permanent false teeth can be fitted.
New Teeth: The permanent teeth are usually fitted 3-6 months after the implant is put in and are custom made to blend in with your existing teeth.
After Care: After your implants and permanent restorations have been placed, it is important to take good care of them. We will show you how to best look after your new smile so that it can last for many years to come.
Replacing Multiple Teeth
If you are missing several teeth, implant-supported bridges or dentures can help fill in the gaps. These usually consist of a row of multiple teeth that are anchored by the same titanium screws that are used for single tooth implants.
Implant-supported bridges or dentures are usually much more stable than conventional alternatives and can therefore perform more similarly to your natural teeth. In addition, they can help prevent the deterioration of the jawbone, are more comfortable, do not require adhesives and there is no need to remove them at night. Often, implant-supported denture or bridge wearers find they have improved confidence due to the overall better performance of these appliances.
Caring for Dental Implants
Like natural teeth, implants need to be kept pristinely clean. The best way to do this is by brushing and cleaning between the teeth regularly. We will show you the proper cleaning procedure for your implant(s). We will also ask you to come in for regular dental exams to make sure that your bite is right and that your implants are secure.
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