When you approach a dental team to have oral implants fitted, it is not simply a case of having them fitted, fuse and then having the prosthetics attached.
There are many nuances to this process which can make some people unsuitable for it. And while it would be misleading to say that most people are not suitable for oral implants, it is well worth being aware of some of the finer points of the process.
So, with that in mind, here are some of the technicalities or health-related things that you will need to know before having a dental implant Melbourne fitted.
You have to be in good health
Not just your dental health, but your general health needs to be good to have oral implants fitted.
Having oral implants fitted is surgery and, like most surgeries, for it to go smoothly and for you to recover from it, you need to be in good health.
Also, it can be important for people having oral implants fitted to wait until any active dental conditions are treated, which is also essential for the process. Gum disease and tooth decay are both contraindicated, so be aware that when you approach a dental team to have implants fitted, both of these issues will need to be addressed.
Your jaw has to be healthy
Implants are placed into your jaw, and they become stable by fusing with it. So, the health of your jaw is pretty important!
Many disorders can impact the health of the jaw, especially in older people, such as osteoporosis and bone cancer. So, your dental team will need to screen for these and will also have to take an X-ray of your jawbone before fitting the implants to ensure that your bone is dense and strong enough to handle having an implant fitted.
There is more than one type
Following on from the area of jaw health comes the different types of implants, which were designed to combat this problem.
An endosteal implant is the most common type and requires the person to have the implant fitted to have a strong, healthy jawbone. But if you do not have this, you are not excluded from the oral implant market. You may be suitable for another option, like subperiosteal, zygomatic or mini implants.
Fusing times may vary
Implants fuse to your jaw via a process known as osseointegration; this is in essence where the bone fuses to the titanium implant.
While most people will have implants fuse successfully in around 3 to 6 months, there are some people for whom the process may take a little longer. This is not uncommon and is nothing to worry about – it simply means that your body lays down new bone a bit slower. But be aware that if after 12 months there is no significant sign of your implants fusing, your dental team will remove them and consider other restorative options.
Lifestyle has an impact
Once you have had your implants fitted, you will want to avoid certain lifestyle habits to ensure that they last the 15 to 20 years that they are designed for.
This will mean cutting back on drinking alcohol, smoking cigarettes and will involve keeping a stringent dental health routine. You will need to brush the prosthetic teeth as you would natural teeth, floss between them and attend dental check-ups every 6 months. This is so gum disease can be prevented, as this can be devastating to implants if left untreated.
Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.