What are dental implants made from?

A dental implant is a small post made of titanium – which is light, extremely strong and biocompatible, and is well tolerated by the body.

What are the different options for implants?

Implants can be used for a variety of purposes, replacing a single tooth, multiple teeth, or a full set of teeth. Implants can also be used to permanently anchor bridges and dentures. Implant choice extends to brand, too – Dr Holmes is experienced in placing Straumann, Botiss, Geistlich and Osteobiol implants, the different advantages of which he will explain during your consultation.

How does the implant process work?

Dental implantology is an extremely precise form of surgery, thanks to modern advances in digital technology. An initial assessment is made using a state-of-the-art CT scanner, which creates a 3D image of your jaw bone, tissues and vital structures. This image is fed into software that generates a 3D drilling guide, which is sent to a technician to be manufactured for real. The physical guide is returned to Dr Holmes, ready for surgery. Implant surgery is carried out using a laser, which is not only completely precise but reduces inflammation and recovery time too.

Once the implant has been inserted, the next step in the process is to wait while it integrates with the jaw bone. Over a period of around three months, the bone will naturally fuse with the implant, creating the solid, permanent structure onto which a crown can be fixed. While you are waiting, a temporary crown will be fitted.

The final stage of implant surgery is all about the aesthetics, when Dr Holmes will affix your custom-made crown, or artificial tooth, to the implant. You will be given special instructions on looking after your teeth post-implant surgery, and will be required to attend follow-up appointments to monitor progress and keep your teeth in top condition.

Does implant surgery hurt?

No – implant surgery is usually a completely pain-free procedure and is most often carried out under conscious sedation, which combines sedative, analgesic and local anaesthetic. There may be some swelling for a few days after the procedure. Dr Holmes will supply you with a comprehensive aftercare plan.

How quickly can I go back to work after implants?

Most patients can return to work within one or two days of surgery.

How long does the whole process take?

Dental implants mostly take around 9 months altogether, from the initial assessment to the fitting of the final crown.

Can anyone have implants?

Generally speaking, yes. We don’t recommend it for children, whose jaws are still growing, but for everyone else, if your mouth is healthy then it is likely that implants will be suitable for you. If your mouth is not healthy, Dr Holmes will consult with you about a treatment plan to carry out the necessary dental work to get your oral health back to optimum condition.