What are dental implants?
Sooner or later in life, many people come to a point where they have lost one or more teeth. In most cases, the best way to solve this problem is by placing a dental implant. A dental implant is a replacement for the root or roots of a tooth. Like tooth roots, dental implants are secured in the jawbone and are not visible once surgically placed. They are used to secure crowns, bridgework or dentures by a variety of means. They are made of titanium, which is a lightweight, strong and biocompatible material.
What are the advantages of dental implants?
- Improved appearance.
- Improved speech.
- Improved comfort.
- Improved self-esteem.
- Improved oral health.
Am I a candidate for dental implants?
Generally speaking, if you have lost teeth, you are a candidate for dental implants. It is important that you are in good health, however, as there are some conditions and diseases that can affect whether dental implants are right for you. Therefore it is important to let your dental surgeon know all about your medical status (past and present) together with all medications you are taking, whether prescribed, alternative (herbal) or over-the-counter.
Types of dental implants
There are two main types of dental implants: immediate and late implantation. It is important to discuss with your implantologist which method best suits your particular case.
How painful are dental implants?
Usually, local anaesthesia is used during the procedure, and most patients report that implants involve less pain than a tooth extraction.
After the dental implant, you will be prescribed painkillers that will combat any pain, and mild headaches as a result of a muscle strain can be treated with over-the-counter pain medications.
How do I care for dental implants?
In the early post-operative phase it is critical to follow the oral hygienic advice given by your dentist so the healing is rapid and infection is avoided.
Once healing is complete, the implant requires thorough and regular care. The success of the procedure depends very much on the personal responsibility of the patient. Regular dental check-ups are required.