Dental Implant Surgery
Dental Implant Surgery involves the replacement of missing or damaged teeth with biomechanically engineered titanium screws that are connected to prosthetic crowns. During Dental Implant Surgery, metal implants are installed in the mouth to replace the root of the tooth. These implants may be connected to crowns immediately in patients wanting immediate dental results or may be left in site for up to 4 months before final crowns are connected.
Dental Implant Surgery can help restore confidence and improve overall oral health in patients who have broken, damaged or missing teeth.
When is surgery required?
When permanent teeth are broken, damaged or missing, a Dentist may suggest Dental Implant Surgery to replace these teeth and improve aesthetics. Dental Implant Surgery can also be necessary to improve bite and natural oral function.
The procedure must be performed by a Maxillofacial and Oral Surgeon such as Dr Naidoo. Ahead of surgery, Dr Naidoo will examine the mouth and conduct x-rays to determine the best approach for surgery. Often, Dental Implant Surgery also involves bone augmentation procedure with the aid of bone grafts. Bone grafting increases dimensions of the jaws to allow for adequate support for implants. These procedures have to be completed prior to dental implant placement.
Patients should have healthy oral tissues and no serious underlying health conditions that may affect bone healing in order to undergo Dental Implant Surgery.
How is surgery performed?
Dental Implant Surgery is performed in stages, with recovery time between procedures. First, Dr Naidoo will work to make incisions in the mouth and expose the bone while a patient is under local anaesthesia or general anaesthesia (may be performed in the rooms or in theatre). A metal dental implant is then cautiously inserted into the jaw bone and allowed to heal. This is necessary for the dental implant and bone to fuse, and may be performed on more than one tooth.
Once the dental implant is in place and has healed effectively, Dr Naidoo will perform another procedure under local anaesthesia to attach the abutment. This abutment serves as the core structure of the artificial tooth crown, and after it is placed, the gums are allowed to heal.
After healing, a mould of the mouth and teeth are made to assist with designing a dental crown for the implant. This dental crown will match the patient’s natural teeth as closely as possible. Dental crowns can either be removable or permanent, depending on the patient's needs.