Even a single missing tooth can make you feel uncomfortable about smiling and laughing, particularly if the gap is on display when you smile. Your surrounding teeth may also shift to try to fill in the space, causing difficulties with biting and chewing food and making your remaining teeth crooked and more difficult to clean.
More and more people are opting for a dental implant to replace their missing tooth. If you are interested in this treatment, we'll first see you for a consultation, where we'll check your suitability for implants (taking into account bone quantity and quality, medical history and lifestyle). We'll also explain the pros and cons of implants and discuss other tooth replacement solutions such as bridges so you can choose what fits best with your wants, needs, lifestyle and budget.
Having a dental implant placed is a pain-free procedure and most patients just need a local anaesthetic, although we can offer treatment under sedation if you are very nervous. Many patients describe the sensation as being similar to having a tooth removed; you may feel some pushing, pulling or a vibrating sensation, but will not feel any pain.
The implant is placed in your jaw and left to heal. You may have a temporary tooth fitted so that you aren't left with a gap if it's at the front of your mouth. After treatment your mouth may be slightly sore and swollen, so we will give you anti-inflammatories and antibiotics to deal with the swelling and soreness. Most patients return to normal activities the day after their implant is placed.
After a healing period, typically four months, we'll see you for a second appointment and will take an impression of your mouth to create your crown. Crowns are made in our lab and your final appointment where your crown is fitted, typically two weeks after your second appointment, should last about half an hour.