The First Fully Accredited Dental Practice in Innisfail

Innisfail dentist is using the very latest in Digital Technology to provide with the best possible outcome for implant treatment.

Dental implants have revolutionized the replacement of teeth. Before the development of dental implants, people with dentures were unable to chew many kinds of food; this has all changed with the widespread use of dental implants.

A dental implant is a titanium screw that fuses with the jawbone. The process of fusing an implant with bone, called osseointegration, involves connecting the implant with a component called an abutment that supports the crown. But what is a dental implant able to do that other teeth-replacement options, such as bridges or dentures, can’t do?

What bridges and dentures fail to account for is the fact that real teeth help to preserve the jawbone while bridges and partial dentures can actually do harm to the rest of your teeth. Fixed bridges require the cutting of good tooth structure from the adjacent teeth, and partial dentures require other teeth to hold them in place. These teeth are severely weakened by the chewing forces on partial dentures. The American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID) states that the average lifetime of a bridge is 5–10 years, and the failure rate of the teeth that hold a bridge or a partial denture is about 30 percent. As for full dentures, these can slip and restrict the types of food that you can eat.

When an implant replaces a tooth, however, the implant provides stability to the jawbone without damaging teeth. According to the AAID, the long-term success rate for dental implants is 97 percent. Dental implants eliminate the problems associated with other replacement methods, and they allow people to eat anything with confidence. An implant can replace one missing tooth, but as few as four implants can replace all the upper or lower teeth. The number depends on the quality and size of your jawbone. The longer the implant, the fewer implants needed to support the replacement of many teeth. Your replacement teeth will be attached to these implants. Soon, you’ll be able to chew just as you did with your natural teeth.

People of all ages can have implants, except growing children. Even if you have bone loss from gum disease, there are bone-grafting procedures that can be performed so that implants can be placed. People with existing medical conditions can also have implants if their conditions are controlled. If you have dentures or are missing teeth, implants can improve your quality of life and give you confidence when eating or smiling. They are easy to maintain by brushing and flossing, just like your natural teeth.

Implants FAQ

What are dental implants?

Dental implants are artificial tooth roots used to replace a missing tooth or teeth.

What are dental implants made of?

Dental implants are composed of a titanium alloy and shaped to fit the bone like cylinders or screws. Crowns, bridges or implant-supported dentures are attached to the implants after a healing period; or possibly immediately after the implant placement procedure.

Are dental implants safe?

Dental implants have a 20 year survival rate above 90%, they are a safe and clinically proven alternative to bridges and dentures for replacing missing teeth in qualified candidates. Those with certain risk factors, such as smokers, and those with inadequate bone density or who are immune-compromised, may not qualify for implant treatment. People with inadequate bone are candidates for receiving bone grafting treatment to regenerate bone to allow for implants to be placed.

Do dental implants work?

The dental literature evidence base shows that dental implants are among the most predictable tooth replacement options. While there is no guarantee that an implant procedure will be successful, studies show dental implants have a 20 year survival rate above 90%.

Can smokers have dental implants?

As with a holistic medical treatment, it is advisable to quit smoking before undergoing dental implant procedures. Smokers are at higher risk for dental implant failure. Smoking can result in the breakdown of gum healing and can lead to major complications with dental implant or bone grafts.

How are dental implants placed?

Dental implants are placed into the jawbone after the dentist prepares a small hole into the site where the tooth is missing. This site is slowly widened to accommodate the dental implant. After the implant is placed, the gum tissue is replaced over the implant and a protective cover screw is placed on top for healing. After up to 6 months of healing, the implant is uncovered and an abutment is attached, that will hold the crown or tooth-like replacement to the implant. In some cases, the abutment may be placed at the same sitting as the implant. When the abutment is placed, a temporary crown will be provided to promote healing.

Is the dental implant procedure painful?

With today’s medication regimes and advanced surgical techniques, there is very little discomfort after implant procedures.

What is the minimum age for dental implants?

Dental implants can be placed anytime after adolescence or when bone growth is complete.

What are the unique benefits of dental implants.

Dental implants are unique because they are the only way to actually address the loss of a tooth’s root system. Moreover, they are low maintenance and durable. Patients with implants will brush and floss their biological and prosthetic teeth as normal. The titanium construction of the dental implant is very long lasting because this metal is strong and compatible with bone mass. Since the body won’t reject dental implants as foreign objects, people can enjoy these replacement teeth for decades.

What are the advantages of dental implant restoration?

When restoring teeth with crowns and bridges local anaesthetic is used and the teeth need to be prepared with dental drills. Dental implant restoration is less invasive than placing crowns and bridges on teeth and local anaesthetic is rarely needed.

In order to obtain an accurate impression, cords are temporarily placed in the gum for the impression to be taken. After the impression procedure, provisional crowns are made for you to wear while the laboratory fabricates the final crowns and bridges. Often local anaesthetic is required while we remove the provisional crowns and issue the final crowns and bridges.

Dental implant restoration is a lot simpler. The healing caps are removed from the dental implants and a precision fitting impression post is attached. The impression is taken and the healing caps replaced. After the dental laboratory manufactures the implant crowns and bridges the healing caps are once again removed and the crowns and bridges placed. We often do not need local anaesthetic with this procedure.

What are the advantages of dental implants compared to bridges or dentures?

The evidence in the dental literature shows that dental implants are stronger and more dependable than conventional bridges cemented to natural teeth, or traditional partial or full removable dentures. Importantly, dental implants may be used to support a bridge or dentures when multiple teeth are missing to restore aesthetics, function and confidence.

Also, dental implant restorations are not susceptible to cavities.

How long is the dental implant recovery period?

Healing from the surgical dental implant placement procedure depends on several factors:

The density or bone hardness is important. Softer bone will need to have a longer healing time before the implant crowns are placed. Diabetic or compromised health patients will also need longer times for implant healing.

Generally 4 to 6 months healing is needed depending on the above factors. Fitting and seating the crown or other restoration may take up to 2 additional months However, every case is different, and routine follow-up appointments and regular dental check-ups are essential to maintain good oral health.

How long do dental implants last?

A dental implant restoration can remain in place and function properly for more than 40 years when proper oral hygiene is followed and regular dental check-ups are maintained.

How soon will I be able to go back to work?

How soon you can return to work after your implant placement surgery depends upon your individual situation. Usually people can return to work the day after implant placement. Different factors might affect your healing as well as your comfort level in returning to your everyday activities.

Ensuring proper healing will not only help you get back to work more quickly, it will also help ensure that your dental implants are successful. Some common factors that affect healing and the long-term success of your implants include:

The length of time required for successful healing also depends upon how many implants you’ve had placed. If you have only had one or two teeth replaced, you might feel ready to go back to work the day after your surgery. If you have received more implants, a longer recuperation time might be more comfortable.