Questions and answers about dental implants

Questions and answers about dental implants

ARE SOME BRANDS OF IMPLANT-SUPPORTED DENTURES BETTER THAN OTHERS?

Your dentist may prefer certain brands of dentures. Various implant companies have been around for a long time, and their products have a proven track record. Other, more recent companies have also developed implant-supported dentures. However, while these brands benefit from the latest advances in research in this field, long-term results are not always known.

To make an informed choice, it’s best to take the time to talk to your oral health professional, who will be able to inform you about the main features and differences between implant-supported denture models. This way, you’ll have everything you need to choose the prosthesis that’s right for you, according to your dentition, needs, preferences and budget.

HOW MUCH DOES A DENTAL IMPLANT PROSTHESIS COST?

There are several types of dental implant-supported prostheses, and their cost varies according to a number of criteria. The price may vary according to the number of teeth to be replaced, the type of prosthesis (fixed or removable) and its position in the mouth (maxillary, i.e. upper jaw, or mandibular, i.e. lower jaw). The cost, which will be communicated to you by your dentist, generally includes the fabrication and installation of the prosthesis, as well as follow-up care.

WHAT IS THE PROCEDURE FOR IMPLANT-SUPPORTED PROSTHESES?

Firstly, dental implants must be placed in the lower and/or upper jawbone. To achieve this, the volume of alveolar bone must be sufficient to accommodate the surgery. If this is not the case, bone grafting can be performed to restore the bone volume required for implant placement.

The dental implant installation procedure is performed under local anaesthetic. A period of three to six months is then required to ensure that the implants are well integrated with the alveolar bone. Once healing is complete, an abutment is added to the implant. This will accommodate the replacement tooth or teeth. Impressions are then taken to finalize the fabrication of the prosthesis. When the prosthesis is ready, an appointment is scheduled for fitting and adjustments. Additional fitting sessions may be required to ensure that the prosthesis is positioned as accurately and comfortably as possible.

WHAT ARE THE ALTERNATIVES TO DENTAL IMPLANT PROSTHESES?

There are various alternatives to implant-supported dentures. To replace all the teeth in a dental arch, it’s possible to use a removable full denture, also known as a “denture”. Most often, the base of a removable full denture is made of acrylic. Metal-framed dentures are also available; however, these are usually preferred when natural teeth are still in place.

To replace one or more missing teeth, partial dentures are an excellent option. Like full dentures, some have an acrylic base, while others are mounted on a metal structure. Finally, a fixed bridge, made up of three or more crowns soldered together, can also be a good solution.

CAN AN IMPLANT-SUPPORTED PROSTHESIS REDUCE BONE LOSS IN MY JAW?

In fact, it’s implants, and not prosthetics per se, that help prevent the bone loss caused by the absence of one or more teeth. When a tooth is missing, the alveolar bone – the bone that supports the teeth – is no longer stimulated and gradually deteriorates. The insertion of an implant, which acts as an artificial root, stimulates the supporting bone and helps maintain the mouth’s bony structures.

CAN IMPLANT-SUPPORTED PROSTHESES PREVENT MY FACE FROM AGING?

A missing tooth – especially one at the back of the mouth – that is not replaced can lead to premature aging of the face. Teeth adjacent to the vacant space gradually shift. The alveolar bone, which is no longer stimulated, deteriorates, and occlusion – the way teeth come into contact when the mouth is closed – is affected. As a result, the face slowly sags. In this sense, if you have one or more missing teeth and opt for dental implants, they will prevent your face from aging before its time by stimulating the alveolar bone and thus preventing premature deterioration of your bone structures.

CAN MY IMPLANTS CAUSE ME PROBLEMS AT AIRPORTS?

No. Titanium dental implants are too small to be picked up by airport metal detectors. This is true of all metal parts used in the manufacture of dental prostheses. So you won’t have any problems at airports.

HOW LONG DOES AN IMPLANT-SUPPORTED DENTAL PROSTHESIS LAST?

On average, an implant-supported dental prosthesis lasts from 5 to 10 years. This may vary depending on oral hygiene, adjustments made and the general condition of the mouth.

DO DENTAL IMPLANT-SUPPORTED PROSTHESES PROVIDE A NATURAL AESTHETIC APPEARANCE?

Implant-supported dentures offer a highly esthetic result, while restoring or maintaining the harmony of your face. In the case of partial dentures, the latest techniques ensure that the prosthesis perfectly matches the natural teeth in your mouth. What’s more, dental implants stimulate the alveolar bone, preventing its deterioration and, consequently, premature aging of the face.

HOW LONG WILL I FEEL PAIN AFTER MY IMPLANT-SUPPORTED PROSTHESIS IS FITTED?

After surgery, as the anesthetic effect slowly wears off, it’s normal to feel some discomfort, even pain. Resting and taking the painkillers prescribed by your dentist will help you recover quickly.

ARE THERE ANY RISKS OF IMPLANT-SUPPORTED PROSTHESIS FAILURE?

The risk of dental implant failure is low. In the vast majority of cases – 95% to 98% – the osseointegration process, i.e. the integration of the implant into the bone structure, is successful. This is due in part to the fact that a thorough health check is carried out beforehand to determine whether any conditions are present that might contraindicate the placement of dental implants.

Only the dentist in charge of the operation is in a position to assess whether osseointegration has been successful. If not, the implant is removed and replaced with a new one after a few weeks. A healing period of a few months is then necessary to ensure that the new implant is well anchored in the supporting bone of the teeth.

Finally, it’s important to note that in most cases where osseointegration fails, no pain is experienced. With follow-up by the treating dentist, the procedure can be repeated without any problems.

WHAT ARE IMPLANT-SUPPORTED PROSTHESES MADE OF?

Recent advances in the technologies used to manufacture dental prostheses have led to the development of new materials offering comfort, durability and unrivalled aesthetic appearance.

The teeth of implant-supported dentures are usually made from acrylic composite resin, perfectly imitating natural teeth. As for the denture base, it’s usually made from rosé acrylic, which reproduces the shape and texture of the gums.

Made from highly precise impressions, dental implant-supported prostheses mold perfectly to your mouth for the most natural appearance.

CAN DENTAL IMPLANTS BE REMOVED IN THE EVENT OF A PROBLEM?

If the osseointegration process fails, an implant can be removed and, if desired, replaced by another. A period of several months is then required to ensure healing.

CAN DENTAL IMPLANTS BE REPLACED?

If the osseointegration process fails, an implant can be removed and replaced by another. A period of several months is then required to ensure healing.

CAN DENTAL IMPLANTS BE PLACED DIRECTLY AFTER TOOTH EXTRACTION?

In some cases, a dental implant can be placed immediately after a tooth extraction. In this case, the implant is placed in the tooth socket where the tooth root was previously located. A healing period is then required to complete the osseointegration process.

CAN DENTAL IMPLANTS BECOME INFECTED?

In rare cases, peri-implantitis may occur after dental implant placement. This is an infectious reaction that leads to inflammation of the soft tissue surrounding the implants. Certain factors increase the risk of developing peri-implantitis, including tobacco consumption, poor oral hygiene and certain systemic conditions such as diabetes or osteoporosis.

CAN DENTAL IMPLANTS MOVE?

A healthy implant, well integrated into the bone structures of the mouth, is not supposed to move. If it does move, it may be a sign of infection. The dentist who performed the operation should be consulted as soon as possible.

CAN DENTAL IMPLANTS CAUSE CANCER?

None of the studies that have been carried out on this subject have demonstrated a causal link between dental implants and the development of cancer cells.

CAN DENTAL IMPLANTS CAUSE HEADACHES?

None of the studies that have been carried out on this subject have demonstrated a causal link between dental implants and headaches.

CAN DENTAL IMPLANTS AFFECT MY HEARING?

The scientific literature does not reveal any effects of dental implants on hearing.

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