Have a question about dental implants? There is a very good chance someone else has asked it before! Have a look at our most frequently asked questions below for answers to your queries
We have collated our most frequently asked questions for your convenience. If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to call us on (07) 3244 2400.
What are dental implants?
Dental Implants are a screw that is placed into the jawbone. Dental implants are made of a titanium alloy and act as an anchor or root beneath the gum surface. This allows the crown or ‘false tooth’ to be fastened in place. They are surgically inserted into the jawbone to support the replacement teeth.
After the surgical placement of the implant, the mouth will need time to heal. This takes approximately two to six months. During this time the jaw bone will fuse with the implant adding strength and durability. After this time a small abutment will be attached to the implant which will connect to the crown and hold it in place.
The placement of a dental implant provides the function and look of a natural tooth without the discomfort, pressure and ulcers generally experience by patients with dentures
When a dental implant is perfectly constructed and fitted; no one should have any hint that it is there!
Why are dental implants better than dentures?
Dentures often make a person feel and look older than they are, cause embarrassment in social situations when they slip and click, and restrict the everyday pleasure of eating comfortably. Further, conventional dentures may contribute to the loss of bone in the area where teeth are missing as they do not provide enough stimulation to the jaw to ensure its health.
Dental implants are permanent fixtures. They are surgically placed under the gum and fuse with the jaw bone providing the strength and durability of a natural tooth. This cannot be found in removable dentures or fixed bridges which simply rest on the gum.
When they count the benefits they enjoy as a result of their dental implants, patients say their implants eliminate the day-to-day frustrations and discomfort of ill-fitting dentures. They allow people to enjoy a healthy and varied diet without the restrictions many denture wearers face. With a sense of renewed self-confidence, many people rediscover the excitement of an active lifestyle shared with family and friends and the chance to speak clearly and comfortably with co-workers.
What is the purpose of dental implants?
Dental implants improve both the function and aesthetics of your smile. They are also effective in preventing your remaining natural teeth from shifting, and also prevent resorption of the jawbone. The procedure involves precise dental surgery to target tooth loss at the source with very effective results.
Will I need to take medication after the surgery?
After the surgery, you will be prescribed antibiotics, as well as an antibiotic mouth rinse. It is very important that you follow the instructions for both the medication and the mouth rinse, as this will ensure your mouth remains clean and free from bacteria. In some cases, you may be prescribed pain medication to help relieve any discomfort following surgery.
Who is best suited for dental implant treatment?
Anyone who is missing one or more teeth due to injury, disease or tooth decay may be a candidate for dental implants. Adequate bone in your jaw is needed to support the implant, and the best candidates have healthy gum tissue that is free of periodontal disease.
Dental Implant patients may be in their late teens or be mature adults in their seventies or eighties.
Why have dental implants become so popular?
Smiling is contagious, and almost everyone wants to smile more frequently and feel more secure when they talk and laugh. As our life span increases, the need for some type of permanent dental replacement system becomes very important to our overall health. Dentures and removable bridges are loose and unstable; causing many problems for wearers. Dental implants provide patients with both functional and aesthetic benefits and can dramatically increase a patient’s quality of life.
Are dental implants expensive?
Dental implants are an investment in your quality of life, appearance and health. Implants do not decay or corrode; they do not get toothaches or suffer from gum disease and therefore in the long run cost less than the alternative restorative dentistry.
Initially, many patients feel that Implant treatment is expensive when compared to other dental procedures. However, dental implants represent a more permanent and natural solution than other dental treatments; for instance complete dentures or partial dentures. Dental implants are therefore a greater initial investment. Dental implants should last for years, even a lifetime if they are properly fitted and cared for.
In terms of cost, each case is different and it is determined upon your individual needs. Your age as well as the quality and quantity of bone in the implant site, are all assessed. After your consultation with Brisbane Dental Implant Group, we will determine your dental needs and the best treatment alternative(s) for you.
How can I aid recovery after dental implant surgery?
After surgery, we will ask you to rinse your mouth with a warm saltwater solution four times a day. The solution will help to disinfect your mouth and reduce the risk of an infection at the site of surgery.
How can I deal with pain after dental implant surgery?
It is quite normal to feel some discomfort and swelling after your procedure. To relieve this discomfort, you can apply an ice pack for around twenty minutes every hour after the surgery. It is also a good idea to keep your head elevated for 24 to 48 hours after surgery to help minimise any swelling and bleeding. It’s important that you try and relax as much as possible after your surgery. Take a break from strenuous activities for at least three days while you recover.
What can I eat after dental implant surgery?
It is important to note that you should drink at least eight glasses of water while you are recovering from surgery. While you heal, try to limit your diet to soft foods like soup or yoghurt for the first week following the procedure. You should also avoid tea, coffee, alcohol and spicy foods for around 48 hours after surgery.
Do all dentists provide implants?
No, not all dentists are trained in implant dentistry. At Brisbane Implant Dental Group, we have an expert team including a prosthodontist, oral and maxillofacial surgeon, an orthodontist and a physiotherapist to see to your every need. Our team is trained in all aspects of restorative dentistry with particular emphasis on superior treatment, planning and long term care.
Is dental implant surgery painful?
Implant dentistry uses both local anaesthetic and a dental sedative to ensure you are as comfortable as possible.
It surprises us how little pain our patients experience after the implant has been placed. As with any surgery there may be some swelling and discomfort afterwards, which is perfectly normal, however we’ll send you away with any necessary medication and helpful advice, and we are only a phone call away if you have any queries.
What do I need to do after the dental implant procedure?
We recommend that you arrange for someone to drive you home after your dental implant procedure. Because you will have had a local anaesthetic you may feel tired or a bit sore once this starts to wear off, therefore, driving is not recommended. An ice pack applied to the swollen area can help. Your dentist will recommend that you take pain relief to ease any pain or discomfort during the period after treatment. Avoid tea, coffee, spicy meals and alcohol for 48 hours following this treatment.
After your dental implant surgery, Brisbane Dental Implant Group will provide you with precise post-surgical instructions to ensure healing occurs quickly and effectively. Your comfort and care is our priority.
Do I have to go without my teeth while the implants are bonding to my jaw bone?
In the past, implant protocol called for patients to go without wearing their dentures for at least two weeks after implant placement. Over the years however, dental advancements have enabled patients to be able to leave the office wearing their teeth the day the implants are placed. At Brisbane Dental Implant Group, every patient and procedure is evaluated separately and there might occasionally be a recommendation that a patient go without their prosthesis for a short period of time.
How soon can I have my new teeth?
The procedure chosen depends on several factors, such as the number of teeth involved, the patient’s dental health and which teeth are to be replaced. These factors will also determine the number of visits to the dentist throughout the treatment period.
Your dental implants need to bond (integrate) with the bone after they have been put in. This takes at least 3 months in the lower jaw and 6 months in the upper jaw. In certain circumstances artificial teeth may be able to be attached much sooner than this.
Will the end result look natural?
Dental implants look, feel and function like natural teeth and their appearance will very likely exceed your expectations. Often patients tell us that their dental implants are hard to tell apart from their natural teeth.
How do I clean around the implants?
Cleaning your dental implants is quite simple and you will definitely need to clean daily around the implants to ensure they stay hygienic. Brushing as well as flossing is of great importance and dental implants should be treated with the same care as your real teeth. There may be the need for a prescription mouth rinse which can further help you keep your implants healthy and free from any possible infection. Electric toothbrushes can also be helpful for cleaning around Implants. Other cleaning aids may be recommended during your consultation.
In addition to home care, it is important to maintain regular visits to Brisbane Dental Implant Group to ensure the health of your implant(s).
Can dental implants break?
Dental implants and the teeth that they support can be damaged by an accident in the same way that natural teeth can. So it is very important to take care as you would your normal teeth.
Can anything go wrong with dental implants?
Dental implants are both safe and effective and have a very high success rate. There is very little that can go wrong with dental implants. Most cases where implants have failed or gone ‘wrong’ are due to poor maintenance and follow up. It is imperative that patients seek out experienced practitioners to perform this kind of work to ensure exceptional results.
What happens if I don’t replace my missing teeth?
Leaving a gap in the mouth can have serious consequences. When a tooth is missing, the teeth around it may begin to move out of place. The consequences could include crooked teeth and unsightly gaps in your smile.
Additionally, these movements may create gum problems and /or decay and could lead to the loss of other teeth. As you lose more teeth, you will be forced to chew in other areas, and this often leads to tooth fracture from overloading or jaw problems. This also leads to a loss of jawbone stimulation which can result in bone loss.
If you are missing teeth, contact of us for expert advice on the various options available. As our practice likes to emphasise, prevention and early treatment is always less involved and less expensive than delaying treatment until the problem becomes more serious.
Will dental implants affect my ability to chew?
No. Dental implants offer a means of securing your dentures which will greatly improve chewing ability. Implants can be used to support removable prosthesis or totally fix your teeth into place. This will allow you to enjoy your favourite foods without having to worry about the pain and discomfort and potential embarrassment of your dentures moving during meals.
Are dental implants removable?
Dental implants are designed as a foundation to support replacement teeth. The implants themselves are not removable, however, the prosthesis fitted on these implants may actually be removable. Whether implants are used to permanently fix teeth into place or as a removable stabilisation option, they offer a convenient problem-free option to stabilise your missing teeth allowing your general dental maintenance routines to take place.
Will dental implants affect my speech?
Dental implants can be used to greatly improve speech patterns. Conventional removable prosthesis often times move and are very bulky causing slurring, mumbling and other speech impediments. By stabilising the dentures using implants either in a removable or fixed form can have a significant improvement in speech patterns. This is a major benefit of dental implants especially for patients who have struggled with missing teeth and ill-fitting dentures.