Dental implants have been used to replace missing teeth since the mid-1960s, but in recent years their use has become much more mainstream. Unlike other tooth replacement options that merely sit on the gums, dental implants are able to bond with the jawbone and create a strong foundation for replacement teeth such as crowns, bridges and dentures.
Dental implants in Herefordshire are provided by many dental practices, including Warrendale Dental. They are designed to support replacement teeth that feel, look and function like natural teeth. Dental implants also restore chewing and biting function and prevent bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are missing.
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are small, screw-shaped, titanium posts, which are surgically inserted into a bony socket in the jaw, acting as replacements for missing tooth roots. A special attachment, known as the abutment, connects the dental implants with replacement teeth such as crowns, dentures or bridges.
During healing, the dental implants fuse with the surrounding bone in the jaw, creating a strong and sturdy foundation for the replacement teeth. This is made possible because titanium is what’s know as biocompatible with human body tissues. The healing process can take 3 — 6 months and after this time the dental implants are steady enough to support the replacement teeth. In some cases, implants can be installed from post to replacement teeth in one day.
Who Can Have Dental Implants?
Dental implants in Herefordshire are suitable for almost anyone over 18 who has lost one or more of their teeth and would like to restore their appearance and chewing ability. However, some limitations apply. To be considered for dental implants, patients should be healthy, with no untreated tooth decay or active gum disease. If dental implants are installed in the presence of these conditions, there is a danger that an infection will occur leading to the implants failing.
Patients with severe bone loss may also not be able to have dental implants unless they restore the volume of their jawbone with bone grafting prior to the implant operation. Finally, patients suffering from certain conditions such as diabetes or heart disease, are advised to consult their dentist to find out if they are suitable for implant surgery.