Everything you need to know about dental implants

A breif guide to dental implants

If you are looking for a solution to losing one or more teeth, you should consider dental implants. Implants are a solution that can last a lifetime if fitted by a good dentist and then looked after properly.

The way they look, the way they work, implants appear just like your original teeth – whether it is one tooth to be replaced by an implant, or a bridging implant for many teeth.

An implantation fitting can take one and half years and is a significant medical procedure. First the area is prepared, which may involve bone grafting or tooth extraction as well as fixing the implants into the jawbone. Then, once  healed, your dentist prepares your crowns. These sit permanently on your gum after they have been properly tested and aligned.

All on 4 Dental Implants
An All on 4 Dental Implant

What is a dental implant?

A dental implant is a titanium screw which is secured into your jawbone. It replaces a damaged or missing tooth root. The hole in which the implant is anchored is pre-drilled into your jawbone. Once the implant is in place, your artificial replacement teeth are attached – either as a crown (single tooth), bridge, full bridge or denture on teeth implants. The latter is called overdenture.

Titanium is the chosen material for the dental implant because it is biocompatible with your body and merges well with the bone – a process called osseointegration.

Your oral surgeon will attach the implant to your jawbone tissue and over time they fuse.

This builds a strong foundation for the replacement tooth. If you require more than one tooth, a full denture or dental implant supported bridge is constructed on the dental implants.

If you do not have sufficient jawbone to support your dental implant, a dental surgeon can carry out a sinus lift or bone grafting to achieve the required support.

Dental implants from Claydon Dental are so impressive that it will be hard to remember they’re not your own natural teeth: you’ll be able to talk, smile, laugh and eat with confidence.

Why should I have a dental implant fitted?

Dental implants are a fixed and permanent solution to missing teeth. They’ll transform your life if:

  • You’ve ever been embarrassed by slipping dentures,
  • You want to fill the gap left by a missing tooth,
  • You are fed up with denture adhesive or
  • You miss eating the food you love.

Everything you need to know about dental implants 1

There are potential negative effects of not choosing a permanent solution like dental implants. These include:

  • Food residues can be left in the gap from a missing tooth causing long-term damage to the neighbouring teeth.
  • Missing incisors can alter your speech, damaging your self-confidence.
  • Once you lose a tooth, bone mass in your jawbone can deteriorate. Over time this could transform the shape of your face, which you may find upsetting
  • Your other teeth can grow inwards encroaching on the space left by a missing tooth. If you have dentures this can make them insecure and also make chewing more difficult, possibly leading to indigestion.

What is the cost of a dental implant?

Dental implant costs are determined by how complex the procedure is, which materials you choose and the prosthetics. Complications like a requirement for a sinus lift or bone grafting will raise the price. This means that it is not easy to provide a generic cost, and when comparing prices you should check they are like for like.

At Claydon Dental for example, one implant could begin at £1,750 plus restoration. And we operate on a sliding scale if more than one implant is required, so it would not be a case of the price for more than one dental implant being a multiple of £1,750. It would be lower cost than this.

What affects the price of dental implants?

Planning and diagnostic costs
Charges for your oral surgery
Materials costs
Prosthetic charges
Planning and diagnostic costs

  • A physical examination.
  • Advice and planning session.
  • Panoramic X-ray.
  • A CT scan.

Charges for your oral surgery

  • Sinus lifting or bone grafting, if required.
  • Fitting of dental implants.

Materials costs

  • The dental implant (costs will vary based on type and brand of implant)
  • Abutments
  • The bone graft material
  • The membrane cost

Prosthetic charges

  • The price of preparing the tooth replacements such as the crown or bridge in the dental laboratory.

Dental implant procedure video

Dental implant surgery procedure steps

Dental procedures before dental implantation (may not be required)

Sinus lift

If required this is only relevant for the upper jaw. It takes a minimum of eight months after a sinus lift before a dental implantation can proceed.

Fully decayed tooth removal

If required, it can take up to three to four weeks to heal but sometimes you can proceed with tooth implantation immediately.

Bone augmentation

If required, you will need to wait four to six months for the jawbone to heal before undergoing tooth implantation.

Dental implant procedure steps

Dental implantation or dental implant placement

Following the dental implant procedure, your jawbone will require four to six months to fully accept the implant.

Impression for restoration

Once the tooth implant exposure is complete your dentist will take an impression for the final restoration.

Fixing the abutment and crown

It then takes five days to complete the final restoration of crown, bridge, full bridge, overdenture or all-on-4 as required.

Planning and COnsultation

In the initial consultation, our dental implant specialist will assess your panoramic X-ray and talk to you. If your overall condition and bone tissue are suitable for the dental implant procedure, then we will develop a bespoke dental treatment plan for you. If the results from the X-ray are not clear further examination maybe required, such as a CT scan to clarify the bone mass.

Dental implantation

The tooth implantation procedure on your jawbone is completely painless. Once the dental implant surgery is completed in our hi-tech operating theatre we will talk you through care instructions and the healing time as the bone recovers. If there was not enough bone tissue to secure the dental implant, we will carry out an advanced procedure known as a bone graft or bone augmentation to compensate for the lack of bone tissue.

Recovery Time

The dental implant will heal under the gum over the next three to six months. During this time the implant is effectively fusing to the jawbone. It is important to take particular care with your oral hygiene during this period and if required take prescribed medication.

Final Restoration

Once the bone has healed, we’ll build the final restoration over the dental implants. Depending on your need this may be a solitary crown (one tooth implant), or a bridge on two dental implants. Or it could be a full restoration which is a full bridge on six to eight dental implants or an all-on-4 fixed denture solution.

Follow Up Appointments

To ensure the longevity of your dental implant you will need to maintain good oral hygiene. We advise an annual check-up so that we can check the tooth implant remains stable and that your oral hygiene is at the required level.

What are the risks of dental implant surgery?

As with all surgical procedures there are risks associated with dental implants but these can be effectively managed with good care. Risks connected to dental implant surgery include:

  • A risk of infection. We will advise you on the best practices for good mouth hygiene following dental implant surgery, including avoiding mouthwash for a few days and not sucking on the wounds.
  • A risk of bleeding.
  • The effects of anaesthesia: we’d recommend not driving immediately after the dental implant surgery, avoiding physical activities and not eating for two hours.