Dental Implant Procedure

Our Dental Implant Procedure

1. Free Implant Assessment

At Scott Arms Dental Practice we offer free dental implant assessment appointments where you can discuss the possibility of having implants placed. Together, you and your dental implantologist can formulate a personalised treatment plan and talk over any of your concerns.

2. Diagnosis with CT Scan or X-ray

If you decide to have dental implants, the implantologist will begin special investigations to develop a diagnosis. This will involve having putty moulds taken of your teeth so accurate models can be created.

At Scott Arms Dental Practice we use a computed tomography scanner (a type of medical imagining device) to give us a 3D representation of your jawbone. The image is formed by arranging the cross-sectional pictures taken by the device in stacks, allowing us to fully assess each aspect of the bone. With this advanced technology, we are able to determine optimum dental implant positioning according to personal bone measurements, which can be accurately measured to the nearest 0.1mm. Furthermore, the diameter and length of each dental implant can be selected according to the bone depths and widths measured by the CT scanner.

In some situations, low bone density can limit the availability of dental implant treatment. However, a CT scanner will highlight areas of low bone density to your dental implantologist who can then treat the site accordingly; normally we will be able to gently compress the bone during implant placement to help compact it around the implant. In some situations, however, a bone graft may be recommended to help give the implant extra stability.

3. Implant Placement

Placing a dental implant is a surprisingly quick procedure. Our highly experienced dental implantologists take only approximately 15 minutes per implant, the same time it would take to have a small filling done.

A small incision is made in the gum where the dental implant is to be placed. This is usually carried out under local anaesthetic, though intravenous sedation can be provided if you’d prefer. Once a small area of bone is made visible the implant site can be prepared. The implant is placed into the newly made hole and the gum is then closed over it and secured with stitches. X-rays will be taken during this appointment to ensure optimal implant placement.

If necessary, a temporary tooth can be provided at this appointment so you don’t have a gap during the stabilisation period. This can be in the form of a bridge or a denture.

4. Implant Stabilisation Period

Over the next couple of months the dental implant will begin to incorporate into the bone. Known as osseointegration, this process is the reason dental implants are so strong and long-lasting.

At the next appointment the implants are uncovered and small abutments are attached. The gums will begin to heal around these abutments while the implants start to experience pressure when you chew. Allowing the implants an adequate integration time before they are exposed to force is what provides such successful results.

X-rays and more putty moulds may also be taken at this appointment to check that the implants are healing nicely and to begin designing the final crowns.

5. Placing New Teeth

After a second short healing phase the final crowns will be ready for placement. At this appointment, any temporary crowns can be removed and the final ones fixed into place on top of the implants. The dentist will make sure that you can bite correctly on them and that they feel comfortable before delivering thorough hygiene instructions so you can adequately care for your new implants.

The implantologist will want to see you again in a few weeks’ time to see how you are getting on with the new implants and provide any necessary aftercare.

Dental Implant Aftercare

After dental implant placement – Instructions following dental implant placement are similar to those following any surgical procedure:

  • Avoid physical exertion for 24 hours
  • Avoid alcohol and smoking for as long as possible (at least 48 hours) as they can inhibit healing
  • Avoid hot food and drink until the anaesthetic has worn off
  • In the first 24 hours following the procedure, try not to spit out as this can disturb the healing site. Take drinks with a straw and don’t use mouthwash
  • Use warm salt rinses gently, beginning 24 hours after the procedure
  • Do not brush around this area on the first day. Normal brushing can be resumed after 24 hours, with care
  • Contact the clinic if any problems arise

Long-term care – Looking after your dental implant is vital for its long term survival:

  • Clean the implant crown twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush and anti-plaque toothpaste. Special implant brushes are also available from TePe
  • Floss around the crown using either SuperFloss or TePe brushes twice a day
  • Consider purchasing an irrigation system like Waterpik or Phillips AirFloss which can clean around the gum
  • Rinse daily with an anti-plaque mouthwash
  • Attempt to avoid eating very hard foods directly on the crown of the implant
  • Attend regular maintenance appointments
  • Monitor your oral hygiene with plaque-disclosing tablets to see which areas of the mouth you are frequently missing

Book Your Free Implant Assessment Now!

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To find out more about dental implants contact us on our dental implants Birmingham helpline: 0121 357 5000 or book an appointment online.