A series of commonly asked questions.


Dr Munira Lokhandwala, Starbrite Dental, Providing teeth implants

What is the success rate of dental implants?

The success rate of dental implants are very high. For a well placed dental implant, the success rate will exceed 98%. There are patients who placed dental implants when they first come out 20 odd years ago and they are still fully functional.

Are titanium implants worth the cost?

Titanium implants are definitely worth the cost. It’s a great alternative to replace a missing tooth and avoid removal dentures or fixed bridges. The use of dental implants allows the dentist to replace a missing tooth without having to resort to cutting the adjacent teeth in order to fit a bridge in the space left open by the missing tooth. The cost of Dental implants is definitely justified as it is a more conservative treatment option for missing teeth.

What can go wrong with dental implants?

A properly placed implant will have very few complications. However sometimes things can go wrong. A dental implant can develop an infection. An implant can also have some components which may become defective. A screw can become loose or its threads can be worn out. So the crown may become loose. An implant can also become overloaded and can lose its grip in the bone. Very rarely, a patient who grinds their teeth at night can actually break the implant. So traditionally implants are well integrated, there’s very little that can go wrong, however like everything else in life, sometimes complications do occur.

Is an implant the best substitute for missing teeth?

Absolutely. The advent of dental implants has completely changed the landscape for dealing with missing teeth. When someone loses a natural tooth several things start happening. The space left over by the missing tooth is aesthetically an issue but more importantly, this start the process of movement of the adjacent teeth. As the adjacent teeth move, all sorts of misalignment start happening throughout the mouth. This process is gradual but one can see it happen.

Additionally the bone at the location of the removed tooth starts to recede. If the dental implant is placed immediately or soon after extraction, this bone resorption is avoided. Once the bone resorbs, to place an implant at the location will require bone augmentation which would be an additionally procedure.

If extraction is required or you have missing teeth (one or numerous) then Dental implants are the way to go in the future.

Do my implants need professional cleaning by a dentist or hygienist?

Yes your implants will need regular cleaning by a dentist or a hygienist so they can evaluate the gums around the implant to make sure there is no problem and if the denture is supported by implants the dentist may have to inspect – make sure the oral hygiene is clean so the implants will give you many years of service.

How much does an implant cost as compared to other forms of dentistry?

At this time the costs of a single dental implant is comparable to a single three unit bridge, so I think implants are a very cost effective option to replace a missing tooth. If multiple teeth need to be implanted, it would still be a cost effectively long term solution. The cost of dental implants should not deter someone from getting the best treatment option.

 

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