Are dental implants the future?

Even if you have the best oral hygiene routine, and there is still a chance that you could lose one or more of your teeth during your lifetime.

Why Dental Implants?

Developments in the dental care industry have been booming with new advanced techniques and prosthetics now available to replace missing teeth. One of the most common and popular is dental implants. However, this procedure is not cheap. The average dental implant in the UK costs around £1,500. This is why Brits have turned abroad, travelling to places such as Hungary or Poland where the same procedure can be £400 or less.

In the past, dental implants were only for the rich and famous. Now, with low dental pricing around Europe, the perfect smile is available for the average person.

The Risks of Dental Implants

For the most part, dental implants have been successful, however, they are not without risks. Trevor Peak, a 67-year-old company director from Hull, had the top row of his teeth replaced with seven implants in preperation for his daughter’s wedding. Seven titanium pegs, like artificial tooth roots, were drilled into his jawbone, then porcelain crown attached to a bridge cemented on the pegs. This whole process cost him around £25,000.

Trevor explains how later on the bridge started to come loose and how it flew out of his mouth during a meeting when he got passionate about making a point. This was only the beginning, over the next couple years, two crowns had to be paste back into place and one of them was redone four times.

He describes it as a ‘nightmare’. He once bit into a plum and broke off a crown. On another occasion, he woke up with a gap in his teeth, he says ‘I must have swallowed a crown at night. I started to look like Bond baddie with steel pins where my teeth should have been’.

Trevor had received a bad implant they were never properly fixed into his jaw because there wasn’t enough bone there. His implants cost him around £2,000 and £4,000 each.

Success Stories

Alun Banner, 53, a senior BT manager from Southend, Essex has another take on dental implants. Banner suffered from gum disease and began losing a number of teeth. He decided to have three dental implants, each supporting a number of crowns on the upper and lower jaw. He happily says ‘now I feel confident about how I look – and because I can eat what I like, my health is good as well.’ Banner is one of many successful cases.

Concerns and Worries

Recently there has been a panic in the dental profession about the safety and longevity of implants. As a result, The University of Toronto’s Faculty of Dentistry began a course preparing dentist for the approaching of failing dental implants.

Dr Levin, head of research at the School of Dental Medicine at the Israeli Institute of Technology in Haifa states ‘we’ve got a new man-made disease, peri-implantitis,’ although the dental profession knows the seriousness of this disease, many dentists take a different view on what causes it.

Hygiene plays a huge role in how might dental implants affect a patient. ‘Careful selection of patients and thorough training in post-implant hygiene are the keys to successful implants’ says Simon Nocton of the Implant Surgery in Tower Hill, London.

Regardless of the issues, implants are still one of the most accessible and professional ways to fix dental issues.

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