Most people who have a missing tooth or teeth have heard about oral implants.
Fitted to the jaw via a rather simple surgery, they have taken the restorative dental world by storm. Implants are indistinguishable from natural teeth, they feel like real teeth, and they last for many years if they are cared for correctly. Great!
However, before you decide whether or not implants are right for you, you will likely have some questions. And in this article, 5 commonly searched questions about oral implants are answered, so enjoy!
How do oral implants work?
As mentioned before, dental implants Sydney are fitted to the jaw via surgery. And it is very clever!
Indeed, the implants themselves are made from titanium. This is a metal that fuses to the bone that it is attached to. So, the implants are inserted into your jaw bone and are then, over a period of 3-6 months, they will fuse and build up the surrounding bone.
Once they have fused, a prosthetic crown, bridge or set of dentures will be attached to the implants, and the treatment will be completed.
How long do they take to fuse?
As highlighted before, it typically takes between 3-6 months for the implants to fuse. However, this may be slightly longer if you have underlying health issues such as osteoporosis or if there are issues with the thickness and health of your jaw.
It can take up to 11 months for the implants to fuse to the jaw, but for most dental teams, if a period of 12 months has passed and there is no sign of the implants fusing, they will remove them and consider the treatment a failure.
Will the fitting hurt?
No, the fitting of oral implants will not hurt.
Your dentist will be able to numb your gums with a local anaesthetic, so you won’t feel any discomfort. Or, if you are a nervous patient, you will be able to use a sedative, which will help you to feel calmer.
Afterwards, when you are home, the sensation may feel akin to having a tooth removed and should be mitigated with over-the-counter pain relief such as paracetamol. If the discomfort doesn’t subside or is worsening, please contact your dentist to have the fitting assessed.
What are the chances of the implants becoming infected?
The chances of an infection occurring with your implants are very low, but not impossible. Signs of infection include swelling, discomfort, discolouration of the gums, pus and feeling unwell.
Should you notice any of these symptoms after having oral implants fitted, you should seek emergency treatment.
How long will they last?
With the correct aftercare, your oral implants should easily last up to 20 years. This will be dependent on you maintaining good oral hygiene, visiting your dentist for check-ups and keeping an eye out specifically for signs of gum disease, as this can and does cause oral implants to fall out prematurely. If you suspect that your oral implants are falling out, then please contact your dentist.
Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.