Discover the benefits and potential drawbacks of dental implants
A dental implant is a titanium screw inserted into the jawbone. This screw imitates the natural dental root and supports the prosthetic suprastructure (such as an artificial tooth). A minimum bone volume is required to ensure the screw is sufficiently stable. Accordingly, before inserting any implants, we must check the quantity and quality of bone available with an X-ray. If there turns out not to be enough bone, pre-implant surgery would be required to enhance it – this is known as a bone graft.
The dental implant offers many advantages:
The dental implant is therefore a good way to achieve comfort and the look of your natural smile.
However, as with any surgical procedure, there are risks involved in dental implants, including “treatment failure”.
This only occurs in very exceptional cases and is mostly due to occlusal overload, i.e. there is too much pressure on the implant when chewing, or bruxism (tooth grinding).
We believe it’s important to take into account the patient’s main long-term aim for improvement, which involves taking the time to discuss all alternative treatment options with them in detail.
An exhaustive examination of the patient’s medical history and a full set of X-rays are required before fitting an implant. This detailed examination may sometimes bring contraindications to the surgery to light. These may be linked to the patient’s health, the structure of their anatomy or certain medication they are on. A specific example of an entire group of medications that contraindicates implants is biphosphonates, aimed at combating osteoporosis.
Age itself is not an argument against fitting dental implants, although surgical procedures may be adapted in individual cases. Equally, there is no such thing as “rejection” of the implant, as the implant screw is made from titanium, a highly biocompatible material.
Once the implant has been fitted, we must wait for the bone to heal around the implant. This stage of healing is known as osseointegration. This ensures the ultimate stability and lasting success of the implant. Once the implant is properly integrated, we create the prosthetic suprastructure – which may be a simple crown, bridge, or the full replacement of all teeth on one jaw with several implants.
Charges for fitting an implant are estimated at an initial consultation. They may vary significantly, depending on patient requirements, X-rays and the technician’s estimate, which may also vary, based on the materials chosen.