Dental implants have been used successfully for the past 60 years. They are substitute tooth roots that are carefully placed into jawbone to replace missing teeth, except they are made from biocompatible titanium.
Titanium integrated with bone
Dental implants integrate entirely with human bone, which grows into the titanium surface to fix them firmly in place. These implants can then be used to support fixed crowns and bridges. They can replace one tooth or a whole arch of missing teeth, and anything in between, and they can also be used to stabilise a loose or uncomfortable denture.
Natural looking finish
For implants at The Bristol Dental Practice the crown is usually made with a combination of computer-aided design and 3D manufacturing technologies in Sweden, and then hand finished by our dental laboratory technicians in Torquay to produce a beautiful natural looking final tooth. Neighbouring teeth are not damaged when these restorations are fixed in place.
Bridges fixed to implants
Groups of missing teeth can be replaced with bridgework supported by dental implants. For example, two implants can support a bridge replacing three or four teeth, with more implants added if the biting forces are particularly heavy, or a larger bridge is required.
It is not necessary to damage natural adjacent teeth when placing implant supported bridgework, the implant construction simply replaces the missing teeth without further compromising any remaining teeth. We use state of art 3D imaging, software simulations and guided surgery to assist with planning and implant positioning.
What happens in a consultation for multiple implants?
The first step is meticulous planning. We will usually take some clinical photos and impressions of existing teeth to give us a starting point to work from. In the next visit implant placement will take place, as well as the removal of any failing teeth. If patients are nervous, our implant surgeon
Surgery in 60 minutes
Our standard approach is to place the implants through a single visit in one surgery. We prepare many aspects of treatment in advance, so that even complex surgery can often be completed in 60 minutes or so.
How many implants are possible?
Four to eight dental implants may be used per jaw, depending on how much bone is available, to support a fixed bridge replacing 10 to 12 teeth. The procedure usually consists of two to three implants that are positioned towards the front of the jaw. We then place another two to three implants at the back of the jaw, tilted to avoid the sinus in the upper jaw and tilted to avoid the nerve supply that gives sensation to the lips in the lower jaw. This technique is useful where there is only a small amount of residual bone remaining, and often eliminates the need to carry out additional complex bone grafting surgery.
Temporary teeth during healing
Later in the day a simple ‘immediate’ acrylic resin bridge is fitted, made by our dental laboratory from preparatory work conducted at previous appointments. This provisional acrylic bridge is then replaced with a more robust porcelain and metal bridge up to six months later once the implants have integrated fully into the jawbone.
Benefits of multiple implants at The Bristol Dental Practice
- neighbouring teeth do not need to be damaged as with traditional bridgework
- over 7,500 implants placed
- eat anything and smile normally again
- reverse the effects of tooth loss on oral health and appearance
- treatment is led by Dr Jonathan Cochrane, a rising star in his field
- conscious sedation is available for nervous patients
- can be part of complex multi-disciplinary treatment
- a painless and straightforward procedure, with predictable results
- dental implants last as long as natural teeth given appropriate care
- follow-up hygiene guidance is given to help implants last as long as natural teeth
Dr Jonathan Cochrane – Principal (GDC No: 228321)
BDS, MFGDP(UK), MFDS RCS, CertConSed, MSc (Dental Implantology), CertImpDent (DGZI)
- Member of two Royal College of Surgeons; Edinburgh and England
- Special interests in Dental Implants, Oral Surgery and Sedation
Dr Liliana Ruzzene – Specialist Oral Surgeon (GDC No: 70039)
BDS, M. Dent (MFOS), FFD (MFOS)
- Has successfully placed over 6,500 dental implants
- Special interests in Dental Implants and Oral Surgery
Dr Peter Ruzzene – Dentist (GDC No: 70040)
- Special interests in Dental Implants and Advanced Restorative Dentistry