What Type of Dentist Should I See for Dental Implants?


Dental implants offer a permanent solution for missing teeth. They can be used to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth in a row, or an entire arch of teeth. This innovative treatment plan results in a restoration that not only looks and feels very natural, but it also replicates the role of the tooth root.

This means the force of the bite is distributed across the jawbone, which can help to minimise the risk of the jaw shrinking, leading to the sunken appearance that is all too common with missing teeth.

Not every dentist is trained to place dental implants. This procedure is not a standard part of dental training, so you will need to see a dentist with specific training. In this article, we’re looking at the role of the implant dentist, and why you should visit an implant dentist when you are exploring your options for dental implant treatment.

What is a dental implant dentist?

What is a dental implant dentist?

A dental implant dentist is sometimes referred to as an implantologist. While all implantologists are dentists, not all dentists are implantologists. It takes extra training to learn how to plan dental implant treatments and how to place implants.

After completing dental training, a dentist will typically work in general practice for a few years before starting additional training in dental implant placement. This could take anywhere from 18 months to three years, depending on the course. The most common courses are a Master’s or a Postgraduate Diploma.

What does a dental implant dentist do?

What does a dental implant dentist do?

A dental implant dentist will typically specialise in this treatment alone. This allows them to focus their attention on dental implants, rather than continuing to offer general dentistry like checkups and extractions.

Dental implant treatment plans will typically take longer to formulate and to carry out, so it makes sense for the dentist to maximise their time by only offering this treatment.

A dental implant dentist’s day might include the following tasks:

  • Meeting with prospective patients to help them to decide if implants are right for them

  • Taking X-rays, CT scans and digital scans to help inform treatment plans

  • Working alongside treatment coordinators to plan treatments for patients

  • Placing implants, abutments and final restorations for patients

  • Learning about new techniques and materials during conferences and seminars

  • Teaching other dentists how to carry out this treatment

  • Providing aftercare and follow up support for patients in person and on the phone

When should you see a dental implant dentist?

When should you see a dental implant dentist?

If you’re thinking about getting dental implants, you might be curious to know when you should visit an implant dentist. The first step is often to visit your own dentist. You might be surprised to learn that they also offer this treatment. If they don’t offer the treatment, they will be able to offer advice and a recommendation for a dental implant dentist to visit.

You can then arrange a consultation with your dental implant dentist. Some dentists will charge a consultation fee while others will offer this for free. If the consultation is free, it might not include things like X-rays which will be essential for checking if you are a suitable candidate.

You can visit a dental implant dentist directly if you are sure you want dental implants, or you can visit your regular dentist and ask for a referral.

What questions should you ask your dental implant dentist?

What questions should you ask your dental implant dentist?

Once you have found a dentist you might like to work with, it’s time to ask questions to make sure they are the right dentist for you. Asking the following questions should help you to determine if they have the skills and experience to help you.

  • What qualifications do you hold and how long ago did you qualify?

  • How many patients have you treated?

  • What is the success rate for implants you have placed?

  • Have you ever treated anyone with a case similar to mine? What was the outcome?

  • Can I see recommendations and case studies of previous patients?

  • How long will the treatment plan take?

  • What aftercare support do you offer?

A newly qualified dental implant dentist won’t have the same level of experience as someone who has been placing implants for many years. So, if your case is more complex, you may wish to look for a dentist with more experience with cases like yours.

Should I go overseas for treatment?

We strongly recommend against saving money by going overseas for treatment. There are many issues with this, from language barriers to a lack of legal protection if something goes wrong.

Dental implants are also a surgical treatment, and you want to be confident you know who is placing your implants. It’s not uncommon for clinics to use patients from overseas for training implant dentists. If cost is a concern, we recommend speaking to your dental implant dentist about payment plans or special offers.

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