Dental implants are changing the way people live. Dental implants are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth which look, feel and function like natural teeth. With dental implants, The person who has lost teeth regains the ability to eat virtually anything. Knowing the teeth appear natural and that facial contours will be preserved, with dental implants, they can smile with confidence.
What are Dental Implants?
The dental implants themselves are tiny titanium posts, which are inserted into the jawbone where teeth are missing. These metal anchors act as tooth root substitutes. They are surgically placed into the jawbone. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. Small posts are then attached to the dental implant, which protrude through the gums. These posts provide stable anchors for artificial replacement teeth.
Dental Implants also help preserve facial structure, preventing the bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are missing.
Click here to learn all about implants and the best option for you to replace your missing tooth or teeth or your existing loose denture. Additionaly, you can also watch this Information Video.
The surgical procedure
For most patients, the placement of dental implants involves two surgical procedures. First, implants are placed within your jawbone. For the first three to six months following surgery, the dental implants are beneath the surface of the gums gradually bonding with the jawbone. You should be able to wear temporary dentures and eat a soft diet during this time. At the same time, your dentist or denturist is forming new replacement teeth.
After the implant has bonded to the jawbone, the second phase begins. Dr. Bhatha will uncover the implants and attach small posts, which will act as anchors for the artificial teeth. These posts protrude through the gums. When the artificial teeth are placed these posts will not be seen. The entire procedure usually takes six to eight months. Most patients experience minimal disruption in their daily life throughout the entire dental implant procedure.
Using current dental implant technology, Dr. Bhatha is able to place single stage implants. These implants do not require a second surgical procedure to uncover them. There are even situations where the implants can be placed at the same time as a tooth extraction further minimizing the number of surgical procedures. Advances in dental implant technology have made it possible in select cases, to extract teeth, and place implants with crowns at one visit. This process, called "immediate loading" greatly simplifies the surgical process.
Who actually performs the implant placement?
Implants are a team effort between Dr. Bhatha and a restorative dentist or denturist. While Dr. Bhatha performs the actual implant surgery, and initial tooth extractions and bone grafting if necessary, the restorative dentist or denturist fits and makes the permanent prosthesis. Your dentist or denturist will also make any temporary prosthesis needed during the implant process.
Dr. Bhatha performs in-office implant surgery in a dental surgical suite, thus optimizing the level of sterility. Inpatient hospital implant surgery is for patients who have special medical or anaesthetic needs or for those who need extensive bone grafting from the jaw, hip or tibia.
What types of prostheses are available?
A single prosthesis (crown) is used to replace one missing tooth – each prosthetic tooth attaches to its own implant. A partial prosthesis (fixed bridge) can replace two or more teeth and may require only two or three implants. A complete dental prosthesis (fixed bridge) replaces all the teeth in your upper or lower jaw. The number of implants varies depending upon which type of complete prosthesis (removable or fixed) is recommended. A removable prosthesis (over denture) attaches to a bar or ball in socket attachments, whereas a fixed one is permanent and removable only by the dentist or denturist.
Why dental implants?
Once you learn about dental implants, you finally realize there is a way to improve you life. When you lose several teeth – whether it’s a new situation or something you have lived with for years – chances are you have never become fully accustomed to losing such a vital part of yourself.
Dental implants can be your doorway to renewed self-confidence and peace of mind.
A Swedish scientist and orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Per-Ingvar Branemark, developed this concept for oral rehabilitation more than thirty-five years ago. With his pioneering research, Dr. Branemark opened the door to a lifetime of renewed comfort and self-confidence for millions of individuals facing the frustration and embarrassment of tooth loss.
Why would you select dental implants over more traditional types of restorations?
There are several reasons: Why sacrifice the structure of surrounding good teeth to bridge a space? In addition, removing a denture or a "partial" at night may be inconvenient, not to mention that dentures that slip can be uncomfortable and rather embarrassing. Dental implants provide a stable base for dentures so that they do not move and are much more functional.
When teeth are missing, the jawbone starts to deteriorate. Conventional dentures do not prevent the jawbone from melting away, and require the dentures to be relined periodically. Dental implants stop the bone from melting away, providing a much more pleasing appearance and significant improvement in chewing function compared to regular dentures.
Are you a candidate for implants?
If you are considering implants, your mouth must be examined thoroughly and your medical and dental history reviewed. If your mouth is not ideal for implants, ways of improving the outcome, such as bone grafting, may be recommended.
What type of anaesthesia is used?
The majority of dental implants and bone grafting can be performed in the office under local anesthesia, with or without intravenous sedation.
Do implants need special care?
Once the implants are in place, they will serve you well for many years if you take care of them and keep your mouth healthy. This means taking the time for good oral hygiene (brushing and flossing) and keeping regular appointments with your dental specialists.