panel top

Implants and Dental Prostheses

What is an implant?

An implant is a titanium piece that is placed in the jawbone and imitates the root of a tooth. Its function is to replace a missing tooth.

Implant therapy solves many problems encountered in classic treatments such as crowns, bridges and removable prostheses. For example, rather than cutting into neighboring teeth in order to replace a single missing tooth as in the classic bridge treatment, implants yield results that are more aesthetically appealing and healthier.

What are the stages of implant therapy?

First of all, your doctor must determine whether or not the area(s) of the mouth are appropriate for an implant. To do this, an examination of the interior of the mouth must be done and measurements must be taken with a panoramic X-ray.

According to the measurement results, the width and height of the implant will be determined according to the anatomical spaces of the area to receive the implant. Generally, a panoramic radiograph is sufficient for making these measurements but in some situations a computerized tomography (CT) may be necessary.

Local anesthetic—the same used for fillings and tooth extractions—is applied. After that, a space is cleared for the implant, which is then screwed into the jawbone. Then, the implant is given some time to bond with the bone. This period is recommended to be three months for the top of the jaw, as the bone is softer, and two months for the harder bottom bone. This period may vary, however, based on the state of the implant area during surgery, the patient’s age and health condition.

Following this process of the implant meshing with the bone, called osseointegration, a piece called an abutment, which will function as a connector between the implant and the prosthetic tooth, is screwed on. This is a fast, painless procedure. Then, a measurement is taken from this piece and within about one week later, your prosthesis will be ready to be mounted.

Do implants hurt following surgery?

Pain following surgery depends on the pain threshold of the individual patient. As the anesthetic wears off, there may be slight pain, but it should not be too strong for the painkillers that are given following the operation.

What is the implant made of?

Titanium is the most suitable material for adapting to the human body and bonding with the bone following placement. It is easily accepted by human tissues, which ensures that it becomes a part of the human body and is very durable following placement.

Who can receive implant therapy?

Under normal conditions, any patients without any serious health problems who have appropriate bone measurements as revealed by examination and X-rays may receive implant therapy. It is not recommended, however, for those who drink and smoke heavily or those who do not practice oral hygiene as they may experience serious problems during the recovery period.

Does implant therapy have a guarantee of success?

Implants have a success rate of 90 percent. As with all surgeries, however, it is not possible to give a guarantee of success.

What should I do following implant surgery?

In order for the implant to properly bond with the bone, definitely avoid putting pressure on the area.This means that you should not chew on the side that has had the operation. You should consume liquids and soft foods as well as pay special attention to oral hygiene.

After the implant is put in, how long before installing the prosthesis?

After the implant is placed, the prosthesis may be installed after three months for the upper jaw and two months for the lower jaw.

Will I be toothless while I wait for the prosthesis to be installed?

It is not recommended for a temporary prosthesis to be used in the area for 15 days following the placement of the implant. The reason for this is that we have seen that it negatively impacts the bonding of the implant and the bone—no matter how much we warn patients not to chew using that side of the mouth. For this reason, the installation of a passive prosthesis that will not serve a chewing function is more appropriate 15 days following surgery.

panel top