Dental Implants for Four Missing Teeth

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If you are missing four teeth, then you might consider consulting with your dental practice so to get one or more dental implants which can replace your loose or missing teeth. Implants are designed specifically to last even longer than natural teeth, and to be relatively hassle-free to take care of. In the case you are not familiar with dental implants and how they work, please refer to the following information.

What is a dental implant?

Dental implants can be best explained as being tiny replacement ‘roots’ of your missing or loose tooth or teeth. Implants are hence usually shaped  as small screws or rod-like cylinders which are designed to easily support one or more artificial teeth. Your dentist will start by performing a tiny incision to expose the jawbone. He will then drill a small hole in it and place the implant on which you have agreed on. After a given amount of time, the jaw will fuse naturally with the implant in a process known as ossointegration. Ossointegration will usually take between 3 to 6 months depending on the strength and deepness of your jaw. After the implant has fused firmly into the jaw, your dentist will then be able to attach an abutment which will hold in place the four artificial teeth you need. In the case you were unable to wait for the time allowed for ossointegration to occur, you might perhaps consider a process known as ‘immediate loading’ where the abutments and restorations are fixed immediately after the implant is fixed into place. However, this procedure is more costly and does not benefit from the high success rates that the classic ‘two stage’ system does

What dental implant would be best for me?

If you are using one or more implants to replace four teeth, there are several options you might consider. Implants differ mostly on two grounds: a) the use they will serve between your other teeth, and b) the cost and material used. Therefore, in order to choose the best implant for you, it is advisable to meet with your dentist for an implant consultation. You will then be advised of what implant will suit your dental requirements best, and which ones will be more appropriate to your budget. Nevertheless, generically speaking, the classic dental implant is the ‘Endosteal’ one (Root Form implant). This involves placing the selected implant directly into the jawbone, and it can hold one or several artificial teeth. After the implant has fused firmly with the jaw, the surgeon will then fit a solid attachment (or abutment) to hold the tooth or teeth in place. This implant is very versatile and works best on patients with a wide and strong jawbone. Nevertheless, if you have a small jawbone you can still get the Endosteal implant by bone grafting. Another widely used implant is the Plate Form implant. As the name suggests, instead of using a screw of cylinder, a plate is inserted into the jawbone. The plate is in fact inserted through small incisions made in the gums which are then closed with tiny stitches. The attachments and crowns are then fitted as a consequence.

Nonetheless, if your jaw is not wide enough  and bone grafting is not an option (due to bone resorption or gum decay), then a Subperiosteal implant might be considered as it places a personalised lightweight framework underneath your gum tissue. This implant will therefore assure that your four teeth will be firmly supported, and its accuracy is ensured via CT scans and/or X-rays, ‘impressions’ and even the latest computer aided implants. This implant acts as an anchoring mean for later restorations; it effectively serves as a series of solid tooth roots. Therefore, the subperiosteal implant is a more expensive option, and if this represents an issue, then a mini dental implant might be considered instead. As the name suggests, this is simply a smaller scale implant which works well as a replacement for smaller teeth and, because of its size, does not require any bone grafting before insertion. This implant is also made out of titanium and functions very well as a fixture for dentures

How much would it cost?

Keeping teeth healthy is an important aspect of our general wellbeing. They play in fact a very important role during our day, and teeth pain is amongst the most excruciating known to man. Therefore, if you have several loose or missing teeth, getting implants is by far one of the best options. Now, in the case you are planning to support four restorations with only one dental implant, then it will cost you less compared to if you were replacing only one or two teeth. As a general rule in fact, it costs less to get an implant which replaces several teeth than a single one. A very rough estimate of costs in the UK breaks down as follows: initial check-up and consultation with x-rays and/or CT scan(s) of around £50-£100, an Endosteal implant between £1,000 – £3,000,  and a bone graft (if necessary) between £500 - £2,500. The costs of the crowns then depend on the material being used. The price variations are due to the fact that dental practices in some areas will charge more due to local rent and living standards. Prices also depend on the skill and reputation of the dentist, whether you are getting ‘immediate loading’, and what kind of implant you prefer. Therefore, choosing the right dentist is of crucial importance, even more important than choosing the right implant.

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Guide to Dental Implants in London & the UK