Mish Sachdev

How Are Dental Implants Done?

Dental implants are the component which integrates with the bone of the jaw/skull and in turn supports a dental crown/bridge/denture. A dental implant can be required for several reasons including, loss of tooth/teeth, gaps within teeth and tooth replacement. Patients are often curious how a dental implant procedure is carried out and therefore, here is our explanation of how it’s done…

The dental implant procedure itself requires special measurements to be taken to plan for the surgery. A CT scan is recommended to ensure that the patients’ specific scenario is planned for adequately. The gum health is also a vital factor – if implants are to last a significant period of time, then a patient must have optimal health to avoid potential future complications.

In some scenarios, if problematic teeth are identified then those teeth may need to be extracted followed by a period of healing before an implant can be made. However, it is sometimes possible for the extraction and implant to happen on the same day depending on the quality and quantity of the bone. In most cases, tooth/teeth need removing prior to the implant and if this is the case, a minimum healing period of around 3 months will need to be taken into account before the implant can be done. Healing time will vary from case to case.

In the surgical placement of the implant, a local anaesthesia will be administered to numb the mouth, or IV sedation will be utilised. That way you will not suffer from any pain or discomfort during surgery. The dentist makes an incision in the gums to place the implant into the jawbone in the desired location. Once this has been placed, the dentist will close the gums over the implant to ensure it remains covered.

Following this, you will need a few months to recover before the second phase of the procedure can take place. This will allow the bone to grow around the implant, forming the necessary strength to remain in place. The process is known as osseointegration, with the titanium ‘becoming one’ with the bone. At the second phase, the dentist will examine the implant to ensure it is secure and robust before a connecting piece called an abutment, is placed over the implant which will be used to hold the new tooth.

Once the gums have healed, the dentist will take impressions and create a custom replacement tooth, which is known as a crown. This crown is then attached to the abutment. Following the implant procedure, the usual healing time is between three to six months to ensure the implant will fully integrate within the jawbone. Once integrated, your dentist will take an impression/scan to allow for the construction of a final crown or potentially a bridge/denture.

 Am I A Dental Implant Candidate?

While the majority of individuals are good dental implant candidates, there are some scenarios which can prevent the procedure taking place or reduce its success rate. Individuals which may not be able to receive a dental implant include those with significant heart issues, uncontrolled diabetes, and certain gum diseases. Additionally, if you have high doses of warfarin, or are undergoing long term bisphosphonate therapy then it is likely you will be unable to have the procedure. A lack of bone can sometimes also prevent you from undergoing the procedure, however, there are other procedures that can be undertaken beforehand to add additional bone. Subsequently, this should not be a major hindrance to the dental implant procedure, but it will likely take longer as the bone will have to be added first.

If you are in need of dental implants, our team at Gentle Dental Care would be happy to advise.  If you are new to our dental family, check out what our customers have to say about us and if you would like to chat further give us a call on 020 3925 3846.