What you need to know about dental implant treatment in Dudley
Dental implant treatment is changing the way we approach the all-too-common problem of missing teeth. In the past, the old solution to conceal a missing tooth was to fit a bridge or use a denture. But both of these treatments have limitations.
The main problem with a bridge or denture is that it only conceals the aesthetic problem and it does not restore full function to the jaw. With a denture, the force of your bite is spread across the gum, which can be quite painful. And with a bridge, the force of your bite is spread across the surrounding teeth.
With a dental implant, the restoration can function like a natural tooth. The implant provides the closest thing to an actual tooth root. This means that the force of your bite can be distributed into your jaw, allowing your jaw to function as it should.
Dental implants may have only been around for the past 50 years or so, but the next decade is likely to be when this treatment becomes more widespread. It is becoming more affordable, and individuals are learning about the benefits of fully restoring function to the teeth. These factors combined make dental implant treatment in Dudley an increasingly popular choice.
What are dental implants?
A dental implant is the name for a type of restorative dental treatment. The actual implant isn’t visible, but it is used to provide a sturdy anchor for a restoration. This could include a crown, bridge or even a full denture.
To complete the procedure, a small titanium screw is placed in a small pocket in the jaw bone. It is left to heal in a process called osseointegration. This is where the jaw bone grows around the implant and anchors it in place.
Next, the top of the implant is revealed and a healing abutment is placed on top. This allows the dentist to shape how the gum looks, ensuring a natural-looking result. At this stage in the treatment, only the abutment is visible above the gum line.
Finally, the restorative tooth is placed on top of the healing abutment. This could be a crown, a bridge or an entire denture, depending on the number of teeth that need to be replaced.
The entire procedure takes place over around 3-6 months. This could vary depending on how quickly the implant heals. Some people also need extra preparation including bone grafting in the jaw, and this will significantly increase the treatment time.
What can dental implants treat?
Dental implants are the ideal option for permanently replacing a missing tooth. They are commonly used in young patients who have lost teeth due to facial trauma. They are also used in older patients who have lost teeth as they age.
A single dental implant could support multiple teeth, provided they are alongside each other. Two implants could be used to create a sturdy bridge to replace multiple teeth. And finally, 4-6 implants could be used to replace an entire dental arch. This offers a permanent and superior solution to a denture.
Dental implants are better for restoring smiles as the finished results look and feel like a natural tooth. There are also lifelong benefits to choosing dental implants over other restorations. One key benefit is that dental implants can help to preserve the facial structure.
When a tooth falls out, the jaw bone can shrink and recede in the absence of the tooth and root. In the case of multiple missing teeth, this can lead to a sunken appearance in the face. Wearing a denture will not protect against bone loss in the jaw, as the denture sits against the gums.
Since a dental implant looks and feels like a real tooth, there is the added benefit that you can eat all of your favourite foods without worrying. With a denture, you might be worried about it coming loose or slipping, which could lead you to favour one side of your mouth while chewing. When this happens, it can lead to the opposite tooth becoming loose, as there is no opposing force.
And finally, a dental implant can also help to keep the rest of your teeth in alignment. When a tooth is missing, the rest of the teeth can shift to fill the space, and this can lead to further problems down the line. This is one reason that a dental implant is a superior choice to leaving a gap in your teeth.
Who is a candidate for dental implants?
It’s difficult to say for certain if you would be a candidate for dental implants because so much rests on the clinical examination. During this initial consultation and exam, the dentist checks your mouth and jaw to determine if you have sufficient jaw bone density to support a dental implant.
Next, the dentist will explore lifestyle factors that could make you unsuitable. For example, if you are a smoker or have uncontrolled diabetes, this could rule you out for treatment. If either of these factors are an issue, we can advise you on the next steps to be able to move forward with treatment.
A good candidate for dental implants will also have good general oral health. Your teeth will need extra care and attention after treatment, so it’s important that you appreciate the importance of brushing and flossing twice a day. You will also need to be free from gum disease before you start treatment.
Even if you have been turned away for dental implants in the past, it’s always worth exploring this option with a dentist that is willing to help you find a way to make it work. For every obstacle, there is usually a way forward. For example, if you could show that you are willing and able to quit smoking for good, this could make treatment possible again.
What are the downsides to dental implants?
While dental implants can help to restore function to your mouth and improve your smile, they are not without their risks. One of the biggest risks is that the dental implant could fail, but when this happens it is often the result of poor aftercare.
An implant can fail if an infection develops in the jaw bone. This can lead to gum erosion and bone loss, which would prevent the implant from being held firmly in place. When this happens, an alternative treatment will have to be used as the bone will no longer be able to support an implant.
Dental implants also take a long time to heal, so this is not a suitable restoration if you want quick results.
How much do dental implants cost in Dudley?
The cost of treatment will all depend on your individual case. By this, we mean that every dental implant treatment journey is unique. The final price of your treatment will be determined by:
The number of implants you need.
The types of implants used.
Whether or not you need bone grafting.
The type of restoration you want: crown, bridge or full dental arch.
Just as the price of dental implants will differ, so too will treatment times. The dental implant procedure can be unpredictable, and so much rests on how long it takes your jaw bone to heal. The final restoration cannot be placed before the implant has fused correctly with the bone, so it’s difficult to say with certainty how long the treatment will take.
This is one reason that we do not recommend cheap overseas deals on dental implants. The unpredictable nature of the procedure means that you could end up paying much more for additional follow-up trips.
And if anything goes wrong while you are overseas, you won’t have the same legal protection as you would have here in the UK. It can be very difficult to force an overseas dentist to pay to put things right when you aren’t resident in the country.
A far better alternative to help make dental implants more affordable is to take advantage of payment plans. These will help you to spread the cost of treatment into affordable monthly payments.
Who offers dental implants in Dudley?
Smile Studio Dentists are proud to offer dental implants in Dudley. Our implant suite can manage every stage of the dental implant journey, so you’ll know you’re always in good hands.
We start with an informal consultation to give you a chance to ask questions and learn more about the treatment plan. We’ll also scan your mouth and jaw to see if you have enough bone density to support dental implants.
If you are able to go ahead with treatment, we can then explore payment options. Spreading the cost of treatment is incredibly common and is a great way to access the dental treatment you need today without worrying about producing a lump sum payment.
It can help those on a budget or a strict income access high-quality dental care. It can also avoid individuals having to compromise on treatments to suit th