Your implant consultation is where we can decide how many appointments you will need, whether you need any surgery before the implants are fitted, and how many implants you may need.
We carry out a full assessment of your general health, how your teeth fit together, your oral health and the density of your jaw bone using a CT scanner within the practice.
We used a selection of equipment to get an accurate idea of how much bone density you have present. X-rays show the height of bone available for implant placement, however more advanced imaging techniques are sometimes needed to determine the equally important bone width, which can otherwise only be estimated from clinical examination.
We use our CT scanner to collate a 3D image of your jaw. Images obtained by CT scanning will normally be able to show all of the information required about your bone, including quantity and quality, but most importantly the presence of anatomical structures that must be avoided. CT scans are not required for every implant case, and will only be recommended if the additional information they provide is thought to be necessary to help us to achieve a successful clinical outcome.
Plaster models and photos will also be needed so that these can be examined after your visit.
We will give you a written summary of your treatment planning discussion(s), highlighting your current dental situation and any alternatives there are to dental implants. This summary will also include an overview of the anticipated treatment stages and give you some idea of how long treatment is likely to take, how many implants are required and what the fees are expected to be.
There may well be other issues specific to your case and these would be dealt with here accordingly.
If you have insufficient bone for an implant, we may choose to go ahead with bone grafting. The surgical process involves take bone tissue from a different source and placing it at the site which we have chosen for the implant.
Bone grafts can come from a number of different sources: hip, chin and posterior regions of the lower jaw. We also can provide treatments that stimulate bone growth but these take longer than a graft.
Find out more here.
Once we are certain you have the right amount of bone, we will fit the implant. Depending upon the complexity of your case the operation might take anything from 30 minutes for a single implant to several hours for complex bone grafting and multiple placements.
We use local anaesthetic for this procedure. If you are nervous about having this type of surgery, we can provide conscious sedation. After the fittings, you may feel slight discomfort so taking painkillers may be necessary. Rest assured that any aching will fade.
The implants will bond with the bone over a few months as titanium is very well-tolerated by the body. Once fully healed, we can fit your replacement teeth to the now firmly positioned implants.
Dental implants enhance the look and functionality of your mouth, allowing you to get on with your life without being embarrassed by missing teeth or ill-fitting dentures.
Once we are certain that your implant had fully fussed to your bone and is secure enough to support a prosthesis, we will call you in for your fitting. Your crown, bridge or full arch will be crafted at a lab and be custom-made to look as natural as possible. During your fitting, we make sure you are happy with the end result.
After the treatment, we will need to keep seeing you regularly. Implants last a long time but they will be far more effective with great dental hygiene and regular brushing.
Implants for a single missing tooth
Having a missing tooth can impact the surrounding teeth if the gap is left unfilled. Not only can it impact confidence if the gap is visible when smiling, it can cause the other teeth to move and thus affect the bite.
Implant retained crown
Implants can be used to replace a single missing tooth. The titanium implant is placed at the same spot as the original tooth’s root. It takes time for the implant to become fully integrated into the jaw bone after the surgery, but once it has healed, we can make preparations for a natural-looking crown. We fix the crown to an abutment which is attached to the implant.
When we make the crown, we note the colour of your natural teeth so we can perfectly match the replacement.
Implant retained bridges
If you have more than one missing teeth, an implant retained bridge can be used. The difference between Implant retained bridges and over conventional bridges are that instead of using natural teeth as the abutments, we use implants. The advantage is that none of your natural teeth need to be treated in order to accommodate the bridge.
At the Gallery, we will assess if you have enough jaw bone density for the implant to fully integrate successfully. Using CT scanning, we will locate the optimum location for the implant. After the implant is placed in the jaw, it will take time to heal and integrate to the bone.
Once the implant is ready, it isn’t always necessary to take impressions as we are able to take a digital scan which are sent to the lab where a custom-made bridge is crafted. When the bridge is finished and sent to us, we will arrange an appointment where we can fit the bridge and check that it matches flawlessly with your natural teeth.
Denture Stabilisation/Implant retained dentures
If you have dentures, you may want to consider having implants to support them. An Implant stabilised denture (over-denture) is held in place by implants, instead of being supported by your gums. As well as being a permanent alternative, it also does away with the plastic support that can be uncomfortable.
If you are suffering with loose dentures, not able to eat or confident to smile, implant retained denture is the answer. You will be able to talk and taste better.
Implants for a full arch
Implants can support a full arch restoration for people who are missing all their teeth in a jaw. This treatment is life changing as it provides the best replacement for natural teeth, restoring functionality as well as appearance.
Before we consider a patient for a full arch restoration, we take CT scans to assess your jaw density. Bone tissue can degrade for a number of reasons and if you don’t have sufficient density, we can provide bone grafting to give the implants enough support.
We also use the CT scans to locate optimum sites for the implants. How many implants you will need depends on your individual case, however it is possible to have four implants supporting the bottom arch and six implants on the top.
Once you have had your implants placed, you will need to take time to heal before having your custom-made arch fitted. We provide a temporary bridge or denture for you to wear in the meantime to protect your implants while they heal. How long the healing process takes depends on the complexity of the treatment. If the procedure needs bone grafting, it will take a minimum of 6 – 12 months.
Same day smiles
It’s possible to provide a full arch restoration on the same day as your implant treatment. Known as ‘Teeth-in-a day’ or ‘Same-day-smiles’, these lab-crafted teeth can be placed on four implants.
“‘Last year I was introduced to The Gallery Dental Surgery. I was a very, very, nervous patient having had a very bad experience some years ago. I was so nervous that I had attempted, and failed, to visit 3 dental surgeries over the last 4 years, leaving in a panic before even seeing a dentist.
I then found Dr Balaji. My initial visit to The Gallery was a whole new experience for me.
I was treated with understanding and kindness by everyone and have never looked back.
Last year I had extensive implant and bone reconstruction surgery and I am truly delighted with the result.
Dr Balaji is an amazing dentist and I cannot thank him and his team enough”