Dental Implant FAQs

Am I suitable for dental implants?

Dental Implants are suitable for people of all ages providing you have good oral hygiene and minimal bone in your jaw. If you are able to undergo a routine dental procedure such as a bridge, fillings, and extractions then you will be able to have dental implant treatment.

Am I too old to have dental implants?

There is no upper age limit on dental implant treatment providing you are healthy enough to undergo routine dental procedures and you have sufficient bone in your jaw, though this is not always a problem as there is there is no reason why you couldn’t have dental implants.

Are dental implants considered cosmetic?

Cosmetic dentistry is a term used for any dental work that will improve the appearance of teeth and gums. Dental Implants are considered both conventional and cosmetic depending on the circumstances of the work. Dental Implants are available on the NHS providing there is a valid medical reason, otherwise, the procedure would be classified as cosmetic.

Are dental implants medically necessary?

There are a number of medical conditions that would deem dental implants medically necessary including disuse atrophy and alveolar, however, in some cases, dental implants are purely for aesthetic and cosmetic results.

Are dental implants permanent?

Made from titanium, dental implants are surgically positioned to the jawbone and providing you take care of them they are a permanent solution to missing teeth replacing both the crowns and roots of the teeth.

Are dental implants right for me?

Dental implants are suitable for almost anyone, if you are missing one or more teeth then dental implants are the perfect solution for you. Dental Implants are perfect for people who no longer want to wear dentures or use a temporary solution.

Are dental implants safe for diabetics?

Diabetics are not automatically ruled out of dental implant treatment, however, there is an increased risk of implant failure. It is possible to undergo surgery if you have controlled diabetes, however, those with uncontrolled diabetes may not be suitable for implants. Contact your dentist to discuss your individual needs.

Are dental implants safe for an MRI?

It is always best to check before having your MRI, however, dental implants are made from a non-magnetic alloy, usually titanium, which means they are safe for an MRI machine.

Are dental implants safe?

Dental Implants are proven to be a safe way to replace missing teeth by providing a strong foundation for replacement teeth using titanium, which is a biocompatible material which the body will readily accept. Dental Implant surgery is also one of the safest and most predictable procedures done in the dentistry practice. For peace of mind, always make sure you visit an accredited dental practice.

Can a dental implant be inserted beside my natural teeth?

Providing there is enough space between the natural teeth to allow for the implant and crown or bridge, dental implants can be placed beside natural teeth.

Can any dentist provide dental implant treatment?

A dental practitioner who has qualified in the UK is not permitted to carry out dental implant procedures without further training. A dentist qualified in implant dentistry will usually hold a Dip in Dent RCSEd of FGDP(UK).

Can I have a tooth extracted and have a dental implant at the same time?

This depends on whether there has been an infection around the tooth which is to be extracted, but generally best results are seen when there has been a healing period or around 6 to 8 weeks. Once your dentist is satisfied that the bone and soft tissues around the extraction site has healed sufficiently, then they will start the dental implant process.

Can I have dental implants if I smoke?

Smoking is bad for oral health in general and will always be discouraged by your dentist, however, it can cause further problems with dental implants. Smokers are more likely to heal at a much slower rate and are at a greater risk of infection. There is also research into the failure rate of dental implants in smokers which shows this to be much higher than with implant of non-smokers. Some implant dentists may not guarantee your dental work if you are a smoker.

Can I have dental implants with gum disease?

If you currently have active gum disease, then you will be unable to have dental implants. Implants require a healthy mouth for successful implantation. Some other oral issues can also prevent implants from being placed such as tooth decay.

Can I have implants on the lower and keep a full denture on top?

Yes, it is possible to have dental implants on both your upper and lower jaw.

Can I replace my dentures with dental implants?

It is possible to replace your dentures with dental implants. If you are missing any of your teeth it is still possible with the help of an implant-supported bridge.

Can I still wear my dentures after having implants installed?

Dental Implants are a permanent solution to replace missing or lost teeth. Once you have your implants placed you won’t be able to use your dentures anymore as you will have a mouth full if brand new permanent teeth.

Can I take the teeth out if they are fixed to implants?

Most artificial teeth can only be placed and removed by a dentist. However, if you have complete dentures fixed to the implants by bars, then you will be able to remove them for cleaning

Can implants always be used to replace missing teeth?

Dental Implants are a fantastic way to replace missing teeth however it does require you to have good oral hygiene and a healthy mouth. Placing implants will depend greatly on the amount of healthy bone on your in your jaw required to fix the implants. Your dentist will carry out a range of test to ensure you are a suitable candidate for dental implants.

Can implants come out?

If you do not take care of your implants or smoke, then there is a greater chance of failure.
If a dental implant is not properly placed by a qualified dentist, problems can occur. However, if you get your dental implants fitted by a qualified professional then there is a much higher success rate.

Can implants improve my appearance?

Dental Implants can improve the appearance of your mouth, especially if you have lost or missing teeth. Dental Implants are a permanent solution to help improve chewing ability and enhance the appearance of your mouth.

Can my body reject the implant?

It is very rare for the body to reject dental implants; however, it can happen if not properly cared for. Making sure you look after your mouth and practicing good oral hygiene will help ensure your implants are not rejected. The most common reason for an implant rejection is a titanium allergy, however, your dentist should check for this before the implant process starts.

Do I have enough bone for implants?

The main factor your dentist will look at when having dental implants placed is the amount of healthy bone present in your jaw as this is what the implants are fixed to. However, if you do not have enough healthy bone, this does not mean that you cannot have implants, in some cases, it is possible to rebuild the bone in the jaw.

Do I need to have a healthy mouth for dental implants?

Dentists will encourage you to have the healthiest mouth possible at all times, however, it is particularly important when installing dental implants. When you have implants, how well you care for them is critical, especially for long-term success. At Alma Dental Practice we highly recommend that you see a Dental Hygienist every 3 months for the first year.

Do implants hurt?

In most cases, dental implants do not hurt and cause minimal discomfort. A simple local anesthetic will numb the area to prevent any discomfort during the procedure, however, there may be some discomfort during the week after whilst the implants settle. A lot of patients say that having a tooth extracted is worse than having a dental implant.

Do the implants show?

Your dentist will ensure you implants are fitted correctly to look as natural as possible. Dental implants are designed to look natural in your mouth and should follow your natural gum line.

How are dental implants cleaned?

You should be careful to avoid the incision area for the first 2 weeks of the implant being placed. You should be given instructions on how to care for the site until your implant is fully restored. Once the restoration side of the implant is completed, dental implants can be cleaned in the same way to natural teeth using a medium toothbrush or an electric toothbrush. Interdental cleaning is of particular importance, for maintaining a healthy mouth and implants.

How can I make my implant last longer?

Dental implants are a long-term, cost-effective solution to lost or missing teeth and are designed to stand the test of time, however, there are a few measures which can be put in place to ensure they last and keep your smile looking healthy including frequent, thorough brushing and interdental cleaning and regular visits to your dentist.

How do I care for my dental implants?

Keep your dental implants looking clean and healthy by brushing twice a day with a low-abrasive toothpaste, flossing regularly and other dentistry tools similar to those you would use on natural teeth to keep your smile bright and healthy.

How do implants attach to the jaw?

A dental implant is a titanium post which is screwed into the jaw bone. After the implant is placed, you will have to wait 2-3 months for the bone to bond with the implant. This process is known as osteointegration.

How long does the dental implant process take?

Providing there are no pre-existing issues that would need to be rectified beforehand, the dental implant process is usually executed in 3 stages, the initial consultation phase, the second phase, which includes the placement of the implant and the third phase, placement of the crown. The complete process can take between 4-12 months depending on how many implants have been placed and the type of final restoration, for example, a single crown or a bridge

How long will the implants last?

When properly maintained with adequate brushing and flossing, the implant itself can last a lifetime, assuming you attend for regular dental check-ups and hygiene visits. The restoration i.e. the crown, however, is rated to last about 10 to 15 years before normal wear can cause the crown to require replacement, although excellent dental hygiene could extend the life beyond 15 years.

How many teeth can a dental implant support?

Dental Implants can support a gap of up to 4 missing teeth usually supported by two implants. A full jaw detachable bridge treatment typically requires four dental implants in the upper arch and two to four dental implants in the lower arch.

How much do dental implants cost?

Alma Dental offers Dental Implant treatment starting from £2630. For more information on our dental treatment costs and plans, visit this page.

How successful are dental implants?

Dental Implants generally have a success rate of around 98%, however, this is dependent on the quality of the bone before implantation and how well the implants are looked after implantation.

How will I be assessed for implants?

As with any dental treatment, you will be thoroughly assessed before having dental implants. There is usually a period of assessment and planning which consists of an initial consultation with an implant surgeon, including a conversation surrounding all possible treatments and alternatives. X-rays and model of the teeth will then be taken, and a written treatment plan created before started the next stage of the process.

How will I feel after the treatment?

Dental implants can be a relatively straightforward process however, it is sensible to make sure you take some painkillers beforehand and have enough for a few days following the procedure. Most of our patients have reported they have had little to no pain the following the day.

Am I healthy enough for dental implants?

It isn’t necessary that you be in perfect health; you simply need to be free of serious diseases or have them under control. Your dentist will need a full understanding of your health history to evaluate your suitability for dental implants.

How Will My Teeth Appear Whilst the Implant Is Healing?

Nothing will change with regards to the rest of your teeth during implant treatment. If the gap you are filling with an implant is at the front of your mouth you may have a temporary denture. If the space is further towards the back, you may be able to just leave the space or have a temporary restoration.

I have some of my own teeth. Can I still have implants?

Yes. You can have any number of teeth replaced with implants – from one single tooth to a complete set.

If I had gum disease when I had my own teeth, will I get it with the implants?

Yes, if you don’t care for them well enough. If you keep them clean and have them regularly checked by your dentist you should not have any problems. Smoking also affects the health of natural teeth and implants. So, if you smoke, you may need to look after your dental implants more carefully. At Alma Dental Practice we strongly recommend you quit smoking if you are considering implants.

Is it possible to wear temporary teeth during implant healing and treatment periods?

Yes. When the space you are closing with an implant is at the front of your mouth it is often necessary to wear a temporary denture or bridge whilst treatment is being carried out.

Is the implant placement procedure painful?

In most cases, dental implants do not hurt and cause minimal discomfort. A simple local anaesthetic will numb the area to prevent any discomfort during the procedure, however, there may be some discomfort during the week after whilst the implants settle.

Is the placing of implants uncomfortable?

In most cases, dental implants do not hurt and cause minimal discomfort. A simple local anaesthetic will numb the area to prevent any discomfort during the procedure, however, there may be some discomfort during the week after whilst the implants settle. A lot of patients say that having a tooth extracted is worse than having a dental implant.

Is there an age limit to implants?

Though a patient’s health should be taken into consideration, there is generally no upper age limit for dental implant surgery.

What are dental implants?

A dental implant is used to support one or more false teeth. It is a titanium screw that can replace the root of a tooth when it fails. Just like a tooth root, it is placed into the jawbone.

What are the advantages of dental implants (over other treatments)?

The advantage of a dental implant is that they keep other teeth in place: Implants can help keep your mouth healthy. If you opt for an implant, this acts to protect and support the surrounding teeth and keeps them from shifting. More natural function: Perhaps the biggest benefit of implants over other treatments is that, because they bond with your bone, over time they start to feel no different than a natural tooth. This means they feel natural, comfortable, and stable even when eating and talking.

What are the benefits of dental implants?

The advantage of a dental implant is that they keep other teeth in place: Implants can help keep your mouth healthy. If you opt for an implant, this acts to protect and support the surrounding teeth and keeps them from shifting. More natural function: Perhaps the biggest benefit of implants over other treatments is that, because they bond with your bone, over time they start to feel no different than a natural tooth. This means they feel natural, comfortable, and stable even when eating and talking.

What are the stages/phases of a dental implant treatment?

The first stage is the implant placement. Once the implant is placed you will have some stitches which are removed about 2 weeks later. We then leave the implant for 2-3 months to allow the implant to integrate into the jaw bone. The next stage is to take some impressions of the implant for the laboratory to make the restoration i.e. a crown or bridge which is fitted about 2 weeks following the impressions. At the end of treatment, all our implant patients receive a free appointment with one of our hygienists who will help you to maintain a healthy mouth. When you have implants, how well you care for them is critical to long-term success. We highly recommend that you see a Dental Hygienist, every 3 months for the first year.

What are the top considerations when choosing dental implants?

If you are considering having a dental implant it is essential to find an experienced implant dentist, as not all practitioners are sufficiently skilled and experienced to perform optimum implant and advanced treatments.

What Can I Eat and Drink with An Implant?

Once completed you should be able to eat a normal healthy diet. Though care should be taken if you have implants at the front of your mouth. The restoration i.e. crowns or a bridge is usually made of porcelain and this can fracture if not treated with care. For example, no cutting Sellotape with your teeth.

What do dental implants look like?

A dental implant is a small titanium screw which is placed into your jawbone. It acts as a tooth root and a permanent restoration i.e. a crown or bridge will be fitted on top a couple of months after the implant has been placed.

What Happens During Dental Implant Surgery?

The implant must be placed surgically into your jawbone and this is done by a dental implant surgeon. It is carried out under local anaesthetic at the practice. During the surgery the gum is cut open to reveal the bone and a hole is drilled (with a quiet drill) into the bone where the implant is to be placed. As the implant is taking on the role of an artificial tooth root it needs to be placed deep into the bone. Once the surgery is completed, you will still have a gap where the missing tooth is for approx. 2-4 months to allow the implant to integrate into the jaw bone. You may be given a temporary denture for appearance sake until the implant has been fully restored with either a crown, bridge or denture.

What happens if I don’t have enough bone?

The main factor your dentist will look at when having dental implants placed, is the amount of healthy bone present in your jaw as this is what the implants are fixed to. However, if you do not have enough healthy bone, this does not mean that you cannot have implants, in some cases, it is possible to rebuild the bone in the jaw.

What happens if the implant does not fuse with the bone?

This happens very rarely. If the dental implant becomes loose during the healing period, or just after, it is easily removed, and your jaw will heal in the normal way. Once your jaw has healed, another implant can be placed there. Or your dentist can make a temporary denture whilst you look at alternative options.

What is the success rate?

A dental implant can fail, however, this occurs in less than 4% of cases nationally and Adam Glassford’s personal failure rate is below 1%. If an implant fixture fails to integrate with the bone, we will be able to spot this on an x-ray before the final work is fitted on top. If this happens, the implant is simply removed and then replaced after a few weeks of healing. In general, failure is due to poor healing such as in the case of diabetics and heavy smokers however it can occur for unknown reasons in healthy individuals.

What material are dental implants made of?

Dental implants are typically made of titanium, a biocompatible material that is accepted by the body and serves as a strong and sturdy foundation for replacement teeth. Some people do have an allergy to metals and so ceramic implants can be used.

What problems can occur with dental implants?

Despite the many advantages offered by a dental implant, problems can still occur, particularly in patients with poor oral hygiene, heavy smokers or if the dental implant treatment has not been carried out optimally. Unfortunately, sometimes implant treatments are carried out by less experienced practitioners and, particularly in the case of ‘dental tourism’ and ‘budget dentistry’, treatments are inadequately planned and executed with the focus being on ‘fast and cheap’, rather than ‘excellence and long-term’. Just because something is cheap and well marketed, it does not mean it is always in your best interest.
If you are considering having a dental implant it is essential to find an experienced implant dentist, as not all practitioners are sufficiently skilled and experienced to perform optimum implant and advanced treatments.

What should I be aware of before my treatment begins?

Before you have a dental implant placed you need to be fully aware of the procedure and the pros and cons of having a dental implant. After you have seen your implant surgeon you should be given a detailed treatment plan with a written summary of your treatment planning discussion. Highlighting your current dental situation and all alternatives treatments to implants. The summary should also include an overview of the anticipated treatment stages and give you an idea of how long the treatment is going to take, how many implants are required and all the fees that are to be expected.

What should I expect during surgery?

The implant must be placed surgically into your jawbone and this is done by a dental implant surgeon. It is carried out under local anaesthetic at the practice. During the surgery, the gum is cut open to reveal the bone and a hole is drilled (with a quiet drill) into the bone where the implant is to be placed. As the implant is taking on the role of an artificial tooth root it needs to be placed deep into the bone. Once the surgery is completed, you will still have a gap where the missing tooth is for approx. 2-4 months to allow the implant to integrate into the jaw bone. You may be given a temporary denture for appearance sake until the implant has been fully restored with either a crown, bridge or denture.

What to expect after dental implant surgery?

Dental implants can be a relatively straightforward process however, it is sensible to make sure you take some painkillers beforehand and have enough for a few days following the procedure. Most of our patients have reported they have had little to no pain the following the day.

When are dental implants necessary?

Losing your teeth or even only one tooth can often be a severe psychological blow. For those people who have teeth missing, wear dentures or are about to lose their teeth, dental implants can offer a superb permanent alternative and a highly predictable way to restore missing or failing teeth.

When dental implants are needed

Losing your teeth or even only one tooth can often be a severe psychological blow. For those people who have teeth missing, wear dentures or are about to lose their teeth, dental implants can offer a superb permanent alternative and a highly predictable way to restore missing or failing teeth.

Why get dental implants?

Losing your teeth or even only one tooth can often be a severe psychological blow. For those people who have teeth missing, wear dentures or are about to lose their teeth, dental implants can offer a superb permanent alternative and a highly predictable way to restore missing or failing teeth.

Will I be able to chew normally?

Once completed you should be able to eat a normal healthy diet. Though care should be taken if you have implants at the front of your mouth. The restoration i.e. crowns or bridge is usually made of porcelain and this can fracture if not treated with care. For example, no cutting Sellotape with your teeth.

Will I be without teeth or unable to eat for a long time?

If the teeth being replaced by dental implants are in a clearly visible part of your mouth you will most likely want to have some teeth present whilst the treatment is underway. There are several ways that this can be done, ranging from simple plastic dentures to temporary bridges.

Will I need an implant for each missing tooth?

You do not need an implant to replace each of your missing teeth, particularly in a case where there are no teeth remaining. One dental implant can support two or more replacement teeth

Will my new teeth look natural?

Dental implants are designed to look and feel just like your natural teeth. And when compared to other restorative options for missing teeth (i.e., bridges), dental implants are hands-down the most natural-looking option.

Will People Be Able to Tell I Have Dental Implants?

Dental implants are designed around the shape of your mouth but also, they are specially coloured to match your natural teeth as closely as possible, meaning nobody will be able to tell which are your real teeth and which are the dental implants.