Frequently Asked Questions - Clear answers to most common questions
At the South Wiltshire Implant Centre we understand that if you are considering a dental implant you will have many questions. We have listed some of the more common ones below. If you still have questions please contact the Practice and we will answer them for you.
What exactly are implants?
A dental implant is a substitute for a natural tooth root. Each implant is placed into a socket carefully prepared at the precise location of the intended tooth. A new tooth is then attached to the implant to replace the missing tooth.
How much do Implants cost?
Treatment costs vary and depend on whether you are treating just one jaw or both jaws and whether there are any particular circumstances that may make treatment more complicated than normal. In general, the costs of our three systems are comparable to other orthodontic and cosmetic procedures. Your dentist will be able to assess costs when you attend your initial consultation. Please visit our fees guide.
How long does it take from start to finish?
Timescales vary considerably depending upon what is being done. It can be 6-8 weeks or 12-18 months. How long in each case is determined via the assessment and treatment plan.
How Long do implants last?
All medical devices (crowns, bridges, fillings, implants, hips etc) are judged over 10-15 years. Data older than this is not usually relevant as the particular device (implant, hip etc) is likely to have changed in that time. 10-15 year success rates are over 90% and higher than equivalent dental procedures. Beyond that time, if the implant is healthy and still working, then it will carry on functioning unless the situation changes.
What are the benefits of having an Implant instead of a Crown or Bridge?
Implants offer a "true health benefit" as a method of replacing teeth, because, unlike crowns or bridges, they avoid the extensive drilling away of healthy tooth tissue necessary for crowns or bridges. Whenever a healthy tooth is a drilled down, the tooth is in effect damaged by the process. This damage can traumatise the tissues inside the tooth resulting, for example, in root canal treatment. If the tooth remains untouched, as it would be if an implant was used instead of a bridge, then no trauma occurs and it is highly unlikely that the tooth would require any other treatment.
Research shows that over a third of front teeth drilled for crowns or bridges require root canal treatment within 10 years.
I would like to start the process as soon as possible, why do I need an Implant Assessment initially?
The most important part of the implant treatment is the assessment and diagnosis. It is here where we examine all the relevant elements in order to determine the individual's suitability for implant treatment. We have an audited 99% success rate with implants because they are placed in situations where they are likely to work. On occasion, alternatives to implants such as bridges or dentures may be a better option. The assessment in the key element in deciding the best course of action in each individual case.
What are Implants made from?
Implants are made from titanium alloy.
Can I book the Assessment without having a free chat?
Yes, the assessment is £150 and this will be deducted if you decide to go ahead with treatment. The CT scan ranges from £90 to £150, depending on complexity.
What is involved with the Implant Assessment, why is this chargeable?
The implant assessment is the key element in diagnosing problems and developing a individual treatment plan for you including findings, recommendations, options and costs. This report takes time to compile and the fee reflects this time spent.
Is there any reason why I would not be suitable for an Implant?
The most common reason is insufficient bone. However, we can create new bone in most circumstances using grafting techniques and so in most cases, Implants are an option. The key is deciding if they are the best option in each individual case.
After the Implant surgery, do I need to rest, will I feel some discomfort?
There is some mild discomfort which is usually controlled by over the counter painkillers. It is wise to avoid heavy exertion for the first day. If multiple implants are placed then this may be relevant for a few more days.
Will having Dental Implants hurt?
No. Procedures are carried out under local anaesthetic which is highly effective. It is easier to anaesthetise for implants than to drill a tooth, as the nerve supply is more limited. Sedation is also available as an option for those who are anxious about dental procedures.
What is a CT scan and why would I need this?
A CT scan gives a three dimensional picture of the bone available for the implant placement, so that we can tell exactly where we can or cannot place the implants. It also allows the exact measurements of the position of the vital structures, such as the nerve in the lower jaw and sinuses in the upper. The information cannot be gathered in any other way apart from surgically and is an essential tool for planning cases. We routinely use CT scans for all implant cases. It removes any element of educated guesswork associated with traditional x-rays.
How long will an Implant last?
All medical devices, (crowns, bridges, fillings, implants, hips etc) are judged over 10-15 years. Data older than this is not usually relevant as the particular device (implant, hip etc) is likely to have changed in that time. 10-15 year success rates are over 90% and higher than equivalent dental procedures. Beyond that time, if the implant is healthy and still working, then it will carry on functioning unless the situation changes.
In view of the costs of Implants, Do you offer any plans to pay this over a period of time?
No. However, implant treatment extends over several months during which you have the possibility to spread out the cost.
When do I pay?
The cost of the implant is paid at the implant placement, 50% of the cost of the crown/bridge/denture is paid at impression stage and the balance at the end.