Everything You Need to Know About Dental Implants
What are Dental implants?
Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that provide a permanent base for replacement teeth. They are typically made from titanium and are inserted directly into the jawbone. Once the implant is in place, a prosthetic tooth is attached. Dental implants look and feel like natural teeth and can replace single or multiple teeth or support a denture or bridge. It is considered in both prosthetic as well as cosmetic dentistry providing strength, and stability and preventing bone loss by maintaining the jaw bone helping to support facial features. It has a success rate of 98%.
How do Dental Implants work?
The implant is placed into the jawbone, where it bonds with the bone and acts as an anchor for the replacement tooth. The implant is then topped with a dental crown or bridge, which is custom-made to fit your mouth. They are designed to look, feel, and function like natural teeth.
- Have one or more missing teeth
- To restore a normal bite
- Improvise speech, Chewing and aesthetics
- Prevent further bone loss
- Improve the fit of dentures
- Poor jaw bone quality
- System Diseases(Diabetes, Heart diseases or on a radiation therapy) increase the risk of implant failure
- Pregnancy – Changes in hormones affect the success in Implants
- Age – Children do not have a developed well-formed bone whereas, for geriatric patients, the bone loss is more.
- Medications – Certain medications like steroids can affect the healing after the implant procedure
- Habit of tobacco consumption or smoking.
- If you play sports, it is important to wear mouthguards to avoid implant fractures
Benefits and Risks
|Improved Appearance and Speech||Expensive procedure|
|Provide improvised comfort||Risk of infection at the implant site|
|Durability is considered good||Painful procedure (Pain can be relieved by analgesics)|
|Improve the process of chewing||Difficult cleaning gums around implants|
|Preserve the health of surrounding bone and tissues||Surrounding tissue or adjacent teeth are at risk of damage|
|Improve oral hygiene||Post-surgical Numbness|
|Improve the quality of life|
Considerations before the implant procedure
- Comprehensive dental examinations – A thorough teeth and its surrounding structure examination is done by your dentist. This also involves X-rays like CBCT (Cone beam computed tomography) to determine the adequate bone structure and determine where should implants be placed.
- Medical history review – Your overall health is a very important factor to determine the procedure as well as the healing process. Therefore, your dentist should be informed about any medical conditions as well as if any medications are being used. This also includes allergies to certain medications or anesthesia.
- Habits – Smoking and Tobacco chewing delay the healing process affecting the long-term success of the implant procedure.
Types of Dental Implants
- Endosteal Implants – Implants which are placed directly into the jawbone.
- Subperiosteal Implants – Implants metal frame which is placed just below the gum tissue.
- Mini-dental Implants
- Zygomatic Implants
- Hybrid/All on 4 Implants
- Immediate Load Implants
- Sinus Lift Implants
Parts of an Implant
- Abutment – Metal connector serving as the base of the crown.
- Implant Fixture – Titanium cylinder placed in the jaw acting as the missing root.
- Implant Abutment Screw – Metal screw that secures the abutment to the implant fixture.
- Crown – Artificial tooth that is attached to the abutment, made to look and feel like a natural tooth.
- Healing Caps: Small caps that are placed over the implant fixture during the healing phase. They help protect the implant from bacteria and debris.
- Dental Implant Driver: A tool used to tighten and loosen the screws used to secure the implant
- Abutment Screw: This is a small metal screw that secures the abutment to the implant fixture.
The Dental Implant Procedure
- Placing the implant – After anaesthetizing the area, to show the underlying bone, an incision is made around the crest of the missing teeth on the gums.
- Osteotomy – The bone is then drilled to enlarge the site for implant body placement
- An implant screw with an analogue is then placed inside.
- Attachment of a healing abutment for the implant fixture is done.
- The gums are then adapted suturing the area for the healing process to begin.
The healing of Bone is done via “Osseointegration”. It is a process by which it anchors into the jaw bone and allows the area to heal in 6 weeks to 6 months. Once healed, your dentist places the brown above. A safety evaluation by your dentist is done after the placement of the implant.
Dental Implants V/S Dental Bridge
A dental implant might be costly, but the biggest advantage it provides is a single tooth replacement when compared to a dental bridge.
To accommodate a dental bridge for a single tooth replacement, the adjacent teeth have to be degraded and slightly compromised in turn affecting the health of two or more teeth. On the other hand, a dental bridge also doesn’t require invasive surgery or bone grafting.
The crowns of dental bridges lose their natural appearance as age proceeds. Whereas dental implants take up to 6 months to heal.
Cost of dental implants
The cost of dental implants in India varies depending on the type of implant and the number of implants required. On average, the cost of a single implant can range from INR 15,000 – Rs. 40,000. The cost of a full-mouth dental implant treatment can range from INR 1.5 lakh – Rs. 3.5 lakh.
Recovery, Aftercare and Followups.
- Maintaining oral hygiene habits to ensure proper healing
- Prescribed medications to be taken correctly.
- Eeed to eat soft foods while the surgical site heals
- Follow-up visits to dentists to monitor the progress of healing.
- Avoid damaging habits like tobacco chewing, or chewing on hard things that might fracture the crown.
- There might be potential complications like nerve damage, implant mobility, or infection, so seek medical attention immediately.
Myths, Misconceptions and the Truth
- Implants Last only 10 years. TRUTH – If aftercare and follow-ups are maintained, it lasts up to 25 years.
- Implants are for young people. TRUTH – The procedure depends on the patient’s overall health, jaw and gum status independent of the age factor.
- Implants are a very painful procedure. TRUTH – The procedure is performed under anaesthesia and sometimes even general anaesthesia. Also after the procedure, medications for pain are prescribed.
A dental implantologist is an expertly trained dentist about placing dental implants in the jaw.
Take the plunge into getting your dental implants. There is no better solution for restoring your smile and improving your overall oral health. Start your journey, you are now one step closer to a better, healthier smile.
So don’t wait any longer, and get started on the path to a brighter future today!
Author Name- Dr.Disha Kanoongo
Author Bio- I’m a passionate , self taught blogger with a knack for writing about interesting dental topics. My blog focuses on providing helpful dental topics to readers. I’m also a big believer in the power of the internet and use my blog to express my opinions to spread awareness about important dental issues . The end goal is to create content that will help readers make informed decisions and to become better informed. Beyond blogging, I am also a dental annotator, a dental consultant and enjoy spending time with my family, painting, and exploring new places.