The practice of implantology was first practiced thousands of years ago but then it was a very rudimentary procedure. In the nineteen fifties a breakthrough was made and since then decades of relentless hard work and dedication has produced a result that is revolutionising tooth replacement. Dental implants Herefordshire is now considered the procedure of choice to replace a tooth or teeth lost either through accident or by tooth decay. The prosthetic tooth replacement produced today is durable and can be shaped and coloured to match a patient’s normal teeth.
Dental science embracing technology
The latest technological advancements have made it possible for a dentist to utilise a 3D camera to scan the teeth and make a clear image of the area in the oral cavity requiring treatment. From this image, using the latest software, the information gathered is sent directly to a machine which mills the new crown matching in shape and colour to the patient’s natural teeth. This ingenious piece of dental equipment removes the need for pastes to take an impression. This computer generated crown is so precise that it avoids going backwards and forwards to a laboratory to get the crown to the size and shape required.
Minimising invasive surgery
The latest innovations in dental implants have allowed the procedure to be conducted by keeping the surgical invasion to minimum, this reduces discomfort for the patient and allows for quicker recovery times. In the early days there were difficulties with jawbone grafting when a patient’s bone density was insufficient to support an implant. These problems have all now been overcome resulting in a procedure that is considered to be routine for tooth replacement.
How many implants can a patient have?
The number of dental implants necessary depends on the number of teeth that need to be replaced. One implant can support up to four teeth in a row. A whole arch can be supported by two implants and the entire mouthful of teeth only requires four dental implants.
What is involved?
In the first instance it is necessary for a patient to have a thorough examination and patient history is an important part of this process. All of a patient’s medical history including all previous medications taken must be revealed. Once the dentist is satisfied that the patient is a candidate for the procedure a full oral cavity examination including X-rays, 3D scans and digital images will be taken. This information is processed by computer software and will aid in the placement of the implant into the precise location where the missing tooth was located. A small incision is made in the gum and a titanium post aided by computer software will place the implant. A healing period of six months is required to allow the titanium implant to fuse with the jawbone. During this period the new crown is milled to the exact shape and colour required to match the patient’s natural teeth. At the next appointment, an abutment is placed onto the implant to help support the crown which is fixed to the abutment.
Back to normal
After a few weeks, it is possible to chew food as normal and to enjoy the new replacement tooth. Normal dental hygiene of brushing and flossing as with natural teeth is all that is required.