When it comes to replacing missing teeth as an adult, you may have been led to believe that the only options available are the use of dentures or a partial bridge.
However, in the last 10 years in dental surgeries around the world, there has been an increase in the number of oral implants being fitted. These are in essence small titanium rods which are affixed to the jaw via surgery and then have prosthetics such as a single tooth, teeth or in some instances, a full set of dentures attached to them, creating a more stable base for the false teeth.
But before you rush off to book this surgery for yourself, you will likely have some questions, and in this article, 5 common queries that dentists receive about dental implants Melbourne are answered.
Does the fitting of oral implants hurt?
No, it doesn’t. When your dentist fits your oral implants, they will ensure that the area around where the implant is going to be fitted is completely numbed, so you don’t have to worry about feeling anything. Once you are at home after the surgery is completed, you may feel slight soreness or an achy sensation under the area where the implant has been fitted. This is normal and many people have compared it to the feeling of a dental extraction. This should fade by itself in a few days but if it doesn’t, or it gets worse, then you need to visit your dentist as soon as possible because you may have an infection.
Why are implants superior to dentures?
Implants are not necessarily superior to dentures but they are more simple to fit into daily life, as they do not need to be removed and rinsed in an overnight wash. They also feel more like your real teeth and thus, you are more likely to take care of them. This will, in turn, reduce the likelihood of you developing gum disease.
Can anyone have implants fitted?
There are four kinds of oral implants; the most common is the endosteal, followed by the subperiosteal, the zygomatic and the mini implant. The latter 3 can be affixed to most people, including those who may have issues with their bone density or degenerative bone conditions such as osteoporosis. However, the most commonly used implant, the endosteal implant does require you to have a thick, healthy amount of jaw before fitting and not have any signs of gum disease or tooth decay. You also have to be over the age of 18 years old.
How long does it take to have the prosthetics fitted?
Once you have had the initial surgery to fix the implants, there is a gap of around 3 to 6 months, which allows these implants to fuse with the surrounding bone. Once it has been confirmed by X-ray that the implants have indeed fused to your bone, then you can have the prosthetic tooth or teeth fixed. If after 12 months there is no sign of fusing, most dental teams will consider it a failure and will move on to a different restorative.
Are implants expensive?
You may be worried that having oral implants fitted will be expensive. But bear in mind that the majority of dental surgeries which offer this treatment are also able to offer financing options which will allow you to spread the cost.
Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.