Ever heard of oral implants? Curious as to what they are and how they can restore a smile and eating habits? Here is a brief guide on what a dental implant Melbourne is, the fitting, and how you should take care of them.
What are oral implants?
Physically, an oral implant looks like a small, titanium screw that then has a prosthetic tooth, bridge, or denture attached to it. As it is made from titanium, the implant fuses to the surrounding bone, making it almost identical to a prosthetic tooth root.
They are fitted to your jaw bone via surgery. The most commonly used type of implant is the endosteal implant, followed closely by subperiosteal implants, mini or micro-implants, and zygomatic implants.
For more information on these different implant types, talk to your dentist.
Luckily, more people than you would imagine are suitable for oral implants.
If you have a healthy mouth in general, are over the age of 18, and have the right amount of jawbone density, then you may be able to have implants fitted. However, there are contraindications concerning overall health; a person who has osteoporosis is unlikely to be suited for endosteal implants.
Furthermore, many autoimmune disorders can create complications, due in part to the way that the medication that treats these disorders works. As they slow the immune response, such medications can delay the fusing time of the implant to the jaw, resulting in a failed implant.
The fitting of an oral implant is fairly straightforward.
Your dentist will numb your gums and jaw and make some incisions into the preselected part of your gums.
If you are replacing a recently lost tooth, then your dentist will likely use the vacant socket to fit the implant. If there is no hole available, then a new one will be drilled. Once this is done, the implant is fitted and the gum is sewn up around it. Finally, the fusing begins!
Once the implant is in, you will need to visit your dentist every few weeks so that they can check on its progress. The fusing process itself usually takes between 3-6 months.
During this time, you will need to refrain from smoking and drinking excessive amounts of alcohol. You should also try to eat soft and healthy foods whilst your gum heals from the surgery.
When you have oral implants fitted, you will need to take good care of them. After all, they are restoratives, and as such, they require care!
Luckily, the care needed is not too different from that given to your regular teeth and can be almost interchangeable. The implants will need to be brushed twice a day, flossed, and looked at by your dentist at biannual checkups. This is to ensure that your gums are healthy and that your body is not rejecting the implants.
With this aftercare and avoiding things like smoking and drinking, your implants could last the rest of your life. On average, they last about 15 years for most patients.
Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.