How Do Dental Implants Work?
Each case we treat is different, and so you requires a very detailed consultation and examination before treatment planning so we can determine your specific goals and priorities.
The Bonding of a Dental Implant
Dental implant treatment is a surgical procedure that places a metal titanium rod into the jawbone. This can occur immediately after a tooth has been extracted (immediate loading implants) or can replace a missing tooth that has been missing for a while. The titanium rod then supports an artificial porcelain tooth on top of it.
Dental implants can be used in a variety of ways to support different types of restorations above it. For example, they can be used to support crowns, bridges or dentures. This treatment is a great long-term conservative solution to restore cosmetics, chewing ability, speech and confidence.
The technique by which the titanium rod connects to the bone is called osseointegration. Each dental implant has a screw-like structure with a thread running along with it. An artificial porcelain restoration connects to this structure via an abutment connection.
There are a whole host of technologies on the surface design of different implant systems to encourage the integration of the bone tissue into the thread of the implant. These range from micro-mechanical channels lasered into the surface to special micro-surfacing that encourages connective tissue attachment.
There is much research into this science, and it was discovered that a physical and structural integration can occur between the bone tissue (osteoblasts and supporting connective tissue) and the titanium screw-like implant.
Using the process of osseointegration, the implant can anchor itself by a physical connection to the bone and thereafter be able to support any restoration above it. Osseointegration revolutionised dentistry in restoring spaces left by missing teeth. It is the only treatment that forms a functional and structural bond between the artificial component of the implant and your jawbone.
As a direct consequence of the use of bone in osseointegration, it facilitates bone retention and bone growth. When teeth are lost, the bone tends to resorb away if the tooth is not replaced with an implant. The concept is much like muscles wasting away if they are not used. Similarly, if the bone is not functional, it wastes away and becomes atrophic.
Dental implant treatment restores the lost function of bone and hence maintains the bone in the jaw. This prevents any changes in the facial form since it continues to support the cheeks, lips and facial muscles, preventing an aged appearance often seen in people that wear removable dentures.
Treatment Planning for Dental Implants
When planning treatment for the replacement of missing teeth, there are many factors that we need to consider. They all play a part in which treatment options we choose and how we design the definitive treatment plan.
We consider several factors to make sure we can achieve long-lasting results, including:
- The Number of Teeth Being Replaced: We need to consider how these artificial teeth will be used and supported. If a single tooth is missing, then we can use a single dental implant. However, if more teeth are missing, we may want to consider a fixed option like a bridge or a removable option like an implant-supported denture. The choice depends upon where in the mouth teeth are missing and the condition of the neighbouring teeth.
- Aims of the Treatment: We look at the treatment objectives, whether they are purely aesthetic or if function is also a priority. A cosmetic treatment plan may involve more teeth, such as when doing smile makeovers to make sure that all the teeth fit together in the new smile. When considering the chewing ability of the dentition, we may need to involve other molar teeth to balance the final bite correctly.
- Choice of Implant System: This depends upon the quality of bone, quantity of remaining bone in both height and width and the type of restoration we will be using that the implant will support. There is now a wide range of implant designs that cater to an extensive range of circumstances. We need to consider if immediate loading or greater primary stability is required. Our choice of an implant is governed by the unique set of circumstances in each case.
- Final Gum Aesthetics: We may need to evaluate for the additional treatment of gum grafting procedures. Alternatively, we may choose an implant design that encourages gum growth in the region near the neck of the tooth. We can now cosmetically establish a great realistic emergence profile of the implant tooth, making the implant tooth look like a real tooth.
Cosmetic Requirements: There is now a broad palette of porcelain colours that can be used to make a tooth look very realistic. We can play with translucency, opacity, surface texture, type of porcelain and a wide range of the colour white, to design a compatible tooth shade. When creating new smile makeovers, we use the same consistent shade patterns to look like natural teeth that suit your face and facial profile. Cosmetic dentistry is a part of implant dentistry.
- Medical Contraindications: To prevent complications during or after treatment, we assess your medical situation thoroughly. As long as your medical condition is appropriately stabilised, there should be no reason why you can’t have the implant surgery.
- Interim Treatment During the Integration Period: We will plan whether we require immediate loading from the implant or whether we plan to create a temporary restoration while waiting for the period of osseointegration.
- Affordability: This is an important consideration for many, which is why our team specialises in customising a treatment plan to suit your individual needs. We only select those implant systems that are the most suited and compatible with you. We want your treatment to be long-lasting, comfortable and cost-effective, which is why we offer financing plans to facilitate your affordability.
BOOK A CONSULTATION TODAY
We offer all our dental implant consultations and treatments at our London clinic. You can call us on 020 8506 0701 or fill out the form here for more information on all our treatments.