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Treatments > Restorative/Cosmetic options > Dental Implants

A dental implant is an artificial root used in dentistry to support crowns, bridges or dentures.

Implants are the ultimate way to replace missing teeth. They are a proven restorative option with a long clinical history and are now a relatively common procedure in dentistry.

Implants are precision-crafted pieces of biocompatible titanium metal that are placed beneath the gums to integrate with the jawbone which usually takes 8-12 weeks. This allows the replacement tooth (or teeth) to not only have a strong stable and long-lasting base but also to enjoy all the comfort, functionality and beauty of healthy teeth. They are, in effect, artificial tooth roots to which a new tooth is attached. They are used to replace one or more missing teeth, to support non-removable permanent bridges for multiple teeth, or to better support a full or partial denture.

The effects of tooth loss are numerous and can be devastating, affecting everyday life. The loss of anything from a single tooth to total tooth loss, can cause a lack of confidence and difficulty with eating and speech. When your teeth are lost your jawbone actually sinks away. This affects the support for the lips and cheeks, and can in turn affect the muscle tone to the face. Consequently the lips and the lower part of the face can collapse producing an aging effect on the individual's appearance.

Implants help to maintain the integrity of your facial structure and reduce the inconvenience associated with tooth loss. Implant supported replacement teeth look, feel and function like natural teeth. Many people wearing dentures that they find loose and uncomfortable would benefit hugely from implants under their dentures, to provide denture stabilisation.

Many people who have lost some or all of their teeth suffer discomfort as a result of loose or ill-fitting dentures. You may have been told that dentures are your only option, when in fact dental implants can be placed under dentures to stabilize them.

The benefits of stabilizing dentures with implants include:

  • improved appearance- the implants placed slow down further bone shrinkage and are an investment in your present and future health and well being.
  • the ability to eat and chew more efficiently The average patient even with a really well fitting denture eats at 15-20% efficiency compared to someone with natural teeth. As your jawbone shrinks, your chewing efficiency is reduced even more, often making it difficult for you to eat certain foods. Dental implants restore your chewing efficiency allowing you to enjoy your favourite food, be that steak or apples, with confidence. Another advantage of this procedure is that a full upper denture covers your whole upper palate, whereas an implant retained upper denture can have the palate removed so you can really taste and enjoy your food.
  • comfort eliminates the discomfort of loose or rocking dentures
  • speech with ill fitting dentures, the teeth will slip and slide around your mouth. Your facial muscles become tense as you attempt to hold the teeth in place, which can result in mumbled or slurred speech. Implant anchored overdentures allow you to speak with confidence.
  • greater convenience as gooey adhesives can be dispensed with. You will no longer need to cover your mouth when you laugh or smile, for fear your teeth will pop out or fall down.
  • greater self esteem and confidence.

Implants placed in the lower jaw have a success rate equal to or greater than 95 percent.

This is one of the least complicated and cost effective forms of implant treatment.

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