If you lose a tooth or have to have one removed because of injury, accident or decay, the chances are you will want to replace it sooner rather than later. Particularly if the tooth concerned is near the front of your mouth, you may be left self-conscious about smiling if you have to live with a gap for any length of time.
There are also several health benefits for replacing a lost tooth with a dental implant as soon as possible. When teeth are lost, the bone beneath the gaps will resorb or shrink back over time, which can cause a sunken appearance to the face and can make the placement of implants more complicated – requiring a bone graft or sinus lift – in the long term.
Thanks to advances in dental implant techniques and technology, it is now often possible to place a dental implant at the same appointment as having a failing or broken tooth removed.
In some cases it is even possible to place both implants and restorations (new teeth) on the same day as having a tooth or teeth extracted. This is known as immediate loading, and systems such as Same Day Teeth are a popular choice for suitable patients, reducing both time spent in the surgery and overall expenses.
This can be particularly beneficial to patients who have lost a tooth though, for example, a sports injury sustained through not wearing a mouthguard, an accident or a failed root canal treatment. It will not be suitable for every patient, and some people will benefit from the healing time of conventional implants (between six and nine months) during which time the implant integrates fully with the bone to provide a strong base for your restorations.
If you opt for immediate placement, here’s how it will work:
- Your dentist will remove your failing or broken tooth/teeth under local anaesthetic or sedation
- Your dental implant(s) will then be placed, again under local anaesthetic or sedation
- If you are suitable for immediate loading, your restorations will be placed immediately; alternatively, you may be given temporary restorations whilst healing takes place
- You will be provided with full aftercare advice and any follow-up appointments to help ensure your implants’ success