Implant FAQ

Q: I’ve lost a tooth and don’t want a plate, what are my implant options and the implant advantages?

A: Single tooth implants provide the basis for a tooth replacement that not only looks like your original tooth but feels and performs like your original tooth as well!  Also, because bone resorption following tooth loss is common, a big advantage of an implant is that this bone loss is reduced.

Q: What advantages will implants have over a denture/dentures?

A: Implants increase the stability and retention of dentures and reduces chance of dentures moving, causing ulcers and feeling generally uncomfortable.

Q: How quickly after my implant operation can my dentist/prosthodontist attach my new teeth?

A: It depends on what sort of teeth and whether bone grafts were used but approximately three to four months after implant placement.

Q: I’m missing one back tooth, is it necessary to have it replaced with an implant?

A: Without the roots of a healthy tooth, the jaw bone can resorb (thin out) slowly over time.  This sometimes leads to a jaw fracture due to the lack of thickness in the jaw where the tooth used to be.  An implant acts like the roots of a healthy tooth to maintain the thickness of the jaw and prevent fracture later in life.

Q: How long does it take to get implants?

A: Generally, Dr Acton requires two preoperative consultations to plan implant surgery through the use of specialist x-rays and working closely with your dentist/prosthodontist.  After the initial planning, the first stage implant can be undertaken (assuming no bone grafting is necessary) at a mutually agreeable time.  This is usually performed as a day procedure under general anaesthetic.  The implant is then left for a minimum of three months to osseointegrate or join to your existing bone.  After this period, the healing abutments are connected to the implants which remain for two weeks, after which the prosthesis (false tooth) can be mounted.

Q: How long do the implants last?

A: Implants are permanent fixtures.  Through osseointegration (joining to your existing bone), they act just like the roots of other teeth.  This is a major advantage of implants over that of removable dentures.

Q: Do I have to go to hospital to have my implant operation?

A: This question needs to be discussed with Dr Acton in your preoperative consultation due to the variables involved with implant surgery.  However, often, in hospital treatment is optimum.

Q: Will implants alter my appearance?

A: Through teamwork with your dentist/prosthedontist, an implant supported prosthesis (false tooth) is made to be indistinguishable from your other teeth.

Q: How much pain is involved with implant surgery?

A: Unfortunately, any surgery in the facial region is uncomfortable, however; postoperative pain is easily controlled through the use of analgesics (pain killers).

Q: Is bone grafting necessary for all implant surgery?

A: In most cases bone grafting is not necessary.  However, due to the variables involved, this would be discussed in a preoperative consultation with Dr Acton after complete examination.

N.B. The above FAQ is only a guide and patients do need to see Dr Acton for a preoperative consultation, during which, individual needs and medical conditions are discussed more thoroughly.  Therefore, please do not hesitate to contact us with any queries by either telephone or email.

Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks.  Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.