Dental implants in Leighton Buzzard LU7

What are dental implants?

They are cylindrical metal devices which are placed into the jawbone as part of a procedure designed to replace individual teeth or support a bridge.

How long have dental implants been in use?

Although many consider this a modern technology, archaeologists have uncovered evidence suggesting that Mayans were performing similar operations over 1,300 years ago. Their material of choice was seashells.

Today's modern implants are composed of titanium, a metal which is readily accepted by, and eventually fuses with, a patient's jawbone. This fusion, or osseointegration, is critical to the success of the procedure, for the vast majority of implants today are placed directly into a patient's jawbone and designed to substitute for a natural root.

Once firmly in place, implants provide a strong foundation for a number of prosthetic devices, the most common of which are crowns and bridges.

Why are dental implants desirable?

Since they so closely approximate natural teeth, implants not only improve appearance, but also boost self-confidence. Implant patients frequently notice a renewed ability to speak clearly and enunciate correctly. The biggest benefit, however, comes from the recovered capacity to eat all sorts of foods. Once freed from the fear of sliding dentures, patients can return to a diet rich in nutrition and filled with the foods they love.

Who is a good candidate for the procedure?

A suitable candidate must enjoy good health, show no evidence of gum disease, and possess sufficient bone to support the implants. To ensure a successful outcome, the patient must be willing to commit to the strict regimen of dental hygiene that will be required to maintain the implants.

Patients able to follow the guidelines can experience a success rate as high as 98%.

What does the procedure entail?

The first step, surgical implantation, is done right in our Leighton Buzzard LU7 dental office under local or general anaesthesia. Once the implants have been placed, the patient must wait for the material to integrate fully with the bone. Depending on a patient's individual rate of healing, this will generally take from three to nine months. During this time, temporary dentures can be worn.

In the second phase, the dentist makes small incisions to expose the implants and attaches to them the posts which will support the new teeth.

The final, or restorative, phase will require several visits to our Leighton Buzzard LU7 office. During this time, impressions will be taken and prosthetic teeth crafted. As a final step, the new crowns or bridges will be mounted on the implants.

How long until I have my final set of teeth?

This will vary from patient to patient, but a full implant procedure will normally take an average of six to eight months. During this time, most patients experience little to no disruption of their daily routine.

For full details, please contact our office in Leighton Buzzard LU7 1DG.