Common Questions About Dental Implants

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Thanks to modern world technology, we are now able to do a lot of things that might have been a dream for the people who lived just a century ago.

Medical science in particular has experienced a lot of development in all the disciplines including dentistry. We do not have to live without a tooth for our whole life now.

There are a number of procedures that can help us retain our smiles. Dental Implants is one of those procedures. Invented in 1952 by Per-Ingvar Brånemark, a Swedish orthopaedic surgeon, a dental implant is a surgical fixture that is placed into the jawbone and allowed to fuse with the bone over a few months. This procedure acts as a replacement for the root of an extracted tooth.

Since the invention isn’t very old, there are some questions that are frequently asked by the patients before making their mind to go for a dental implant in London just like the people of any other place.

In this blog, I will try to answer a few of them hoping that the doubts will get cleared and you’ll have a better understanding of the basic aspects of it like procedures, durability, budget, etc.

What is a dental implant?

As discussed above, a dental implant is a surgical fixture that is placed into the jawbone and allowed to fuse with the bone over the span of a few months.

This isn’t an actual tooth but a prosthesis that’s used to replace the tooth that’s been extracted. Going a little deep into it, it is basically a titanium fixture that’s inserted by the dentist in our jawbone and on which he attaches one of the four things.

Those four things are a fixed bridge, a single crown (cap), a full denture, and a partial denture. The whole procedure goes like this: After the implant integrates to the bone, a structure known as an abutment is connected by the dentist to your implant and the artificial tooth or teeth is attached after that. This takes us to the conclusion that there are three parts of this process — the implant, the abutment, and the artificial tooth.

How common are dental implants?

Well, it is very common! Losing a tooth is quite a common phenomenon. Many people lose their teeth for many reasons. This can be accidental or intentional.

If your tooth has a cavity or is broken due to an accidental injury, you are very likely to go for a dental implant. A lot of people go for a teeth implant in London.

How long is it going to take for a dental implant procedure?

Don’t get confused if one of your friends tells you one timeline and another friend another timeline. Both of them could be correct and have their own justifications and proofs. The reason for the same is simple and scientific.

Time taken by the complete implant procedure depends upon a number of factors that play an important role. The major factors on which it depends are, a) your dental health b) the tooth you are implanting c) the number of teeth involved d) if you require any other procedures like an extraction for your dental implant.

The dental implant is usually done in two phases for which a dentist may take approximately three to nine months depending upon your oral health and the other factors stated above.

What are the pros and cons of a dental implant?

Everything that we come across has a good side and a bad side. There are very few things that are only good or only bad. We don’t see things like those very often. The same is the case in medical science.

Everything has its advantages and disadvantages. If we talk about medical implants there are indeed the upsides and the downsides to it too. Let us start by speaking about its downside.

Since a dental implant is an oral surgical procedure, it also has the chance of getting infected due to which a patient may suffer pain or inflammation. Although the negative effects aren’t much and the extreme cases are seen rarely, still one can’t deny the fact that patients complain about these conditions sometimes.

Also, this procedure can get costly for you depending upon some factors i.e number of visits it’ll take you during the procedure or if you require any special procedures at the time of implant i.e bone grafting, etc.

These were some of the cons of dental implants. Let’s now throw some light on the positive sides of it. We can start with the fact that the number of its advantages over the disadvantages are way more in number.

On a lighter note, I think that should be called the major advantage in the first place. However, the advantages can be a) improvement in appearance b) boost in confidence c) durability d) you can have your favourite food e) they don’t decay.

What all can I eat after the procedure?

Well, I am sorry to inform you that you can’t eat your favourite chicken after the procedure. Not because of any allergy or sorts but because of it being a little hard. But there isn’t anything to worry about, you can still order a number of things from the menu of your favourite restaurant.

The things you can have include soft foods, shakes, soups, smoothies, yoghurt, pudding, and all the similar foods. So, go for it without worrying about your hunger pangs at all.

There are many other questions that are asked by the patients before and after going for the implant however the above-mentioned questions are asked repeatedly that’s why I chose to answer this set of questions first. Researching about any procedure before making your mind up for it is actually a good practice for you to get to know about all the possible consequences in advance.

However, there are some defined places where you can go for the best dental implants in London. You just need to research a bit more or simply reach out to us.

How To tell if your dental implant is failing?

There are many signs which tell you that your recent dental implant has not been very great. Some of them are: difficulty chewing, gum inflammation, gum recession, increased swelling, loosening of an implant or a replaced tooth, and severe pain or discomfort.

How long after dental implant surgery can I exercise?

Though there isn’t any specific time period for it but you can resume your regular exercise in three to four days. However, better is to make sure that the implant is set perfectly.

How is a crown is attached to a dental implant?

This can be done using two methods. First, the dentist can use a small screw to enter the top of the crown into the abutment. This is known as screw-retained dental crowns, The other procedure includes using dental cement to attach the crown to the abutment known as cemented crowns.

What material is a dental implant?

The material in a dental implant is Titanium. It is used to replace the missing tooth.

How to remove dental implant?

Dental implants are removed when any difficulty occurs. There are many techniques to remove it however the latest one is by using a device known as an adapter. This allows the oral surgeon to remove the implant without having to cut through bone tissue. 

Why does dental implant hurt when I chew something?

This problem mainly occurs when the implant hasn’t fitted completely. There can be many reasons for this to happen but it can end up causing pain in and around the implant.

What is bone grafting dental implant?

Just like other implant procedures, this is a procedure that replaces and regenerates lost bone, and can also restore proper facial contour. People usually go for it when they have lost a tooth in an accident or because of decay. 

What not to do after dental implant?

While you can do a lot of things after a successful implant, there are a few things you should take care of in order to make sure that it doesn’t fail. Avoid hot drinks or hot food for the first day and do not disturb the implant area with your tongue. Have only cold drinks and follow your dentist’s advice very carefully. 

What can I eat after dental implant surgery?

Since this is a very delicate procedure, eating anything hard can prove harmful for the implant. Hence, you can go for smoothies, yogurt, ice cream, pudding, applesauce, mashed potatoes, creamy soups and broth, and other such soft/liquid foods.

What are the signs of dental implant failure?

Not every dental implant is a successful implant. It can fail like any other procedure can fail. Your implant has failed if you feel any or all of the following symptoms. Chewing difficulties.

  • Gum inflammation.
  • Gum recession.
  • Irritation and swelling.
  • Shifted or loose implant or replaced tooth.
  • Intense pain or discomfort.

Can you get dental implant on NHS?

Yes, you can. However, you can only avail it if you have 

  • Have or had oral or mouth cancer.
  • Lost their teeth as a result of a facial trauma.
  • Have gaps in the mouth due to a genetic condition.
  • Have a medical reason why they cannot wear removable dentures.

Are dental implants safe?

Yes, they are. Not just safe, they are the best replacement for a lost tooth.  They are long-lasting and the best-looking substitutes for a lost tooth.

Why are dental implants so expensive?

They are expensive because they are very technical procedures and you pay for the expertise of the people involved in it. Also, the titanium used in the implant is costly enough.

Can having dental implants cause headaches?

Well, yes it can. Just like any other procedure, dental implants can also come with side effects if not done properly. Any damage to the sinus cavity or the surrounding nerves could result in facial or headaches. 

Can you have a dental implant with gum disease?

No, you can’t. It is not advised to go for implants if you are suffering from any gum diseases. It can worsen your condition and chances are high that your implant will fail.

How are dental implants made?

There are many ways of doing it. The most common procedure for implant insertion is making a small incision into the gum, exposing the jawbone. Following this, a hole is drilled into the bone and the implant is screwed into place, where it will be left for a long time in order to allow the bone to fuse.

Are dental implants safe for seniors?

It is safe, however, the healing time may be far more than a young patient. They also have potentially longer more systemic health factors and the likelihood of poorer local bone conditions.

Can dental implants damage adjacent teeth?

Though it doesn’t happen very often but yes, it can surely damage the next tooth. If placed extremely close to the next tooth, there are high chances of infection or bone resorption.

Dr. Narinder Dhadwal

Narinder is a Specialist Periodontist based in private practice. She qualified from St. Bartholomew’s & The Royal London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary, University of London in 2007. During her studies she was awarded the Harold Fink Prize for outstanding academic achievement.

Posted On : August 10, 2021

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