London Centre for Periodontics and Implant Dentistry

What are dental implants?

Replacing missing teeth in London W1G

Dental implants are little titanium screws that are carefully and gently placed into your jaw bones. The jaw bone then grows into the screw threads locking the implant in place. False teeth can then be attached.

Dental Implants FAQ's

What are the benefits of dental implants?

  • Prevention of bone loss after tooth loss. This will preserve facial appearance in many patients.
  • No need to cut down adjacent teeth to support the new teeth filling the gap. Dental implants are therefore, a non destructive dental procedure
  • Improved confidence in chewing: no more embarrassing moments with loose dentures, no more dental glue or soft liners. This could mean that you can, once again, eat those foods that you love but have been unable to eat.
  • Comfort: dental implants feel like your natural teeth.

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Will I have a gap in my smile whilst the implants are healing?

In some cases, it may be possible to attach temporary teeth to the implants on the day of surgery. If this is too risky then we will provide an acceptable temporary replacement during the healing period so you don’t have a gap. The healing period takes 6-12 weeks in most cases. Healing may take longer in some specific cases. We will discuss this with you before we start treatment.

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What are the down sides of dental implant treatment?

These are the same as normal dental surgery: bleeding, bruising, swelling, discomfort and infection. Any tendency for bruising or swelling is reduced by the use of ice pack after the procedure. Any discomfort is usually well controlled with mild pain killers such as Ibuprofen. Infection is extremely rare (less than x % of procedures). Most patients are fine to go back to work, study, life within 1 – 3 days.

Failure of the dental implant soon after it is placed is very rare (1%) assuming a premium-branded implant is used. Patients who are smokers and those with a history of gum disease are at a slightly increased risk of failure. We will design a personalised plan to minimise this risk.

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Do I need to take antibiotics?

Generally no. In some cases e.g. bone grafting it is prudent to do so.

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Am I suitable for dental implants?

In general, everyone is suitable for dental implants as long as you have stopped growing (>18 years old). There is no upper age limit. Some medical conditions e.g. bleeding disorders such as haemophilia make all surgery very difficult. As long as you have a stable medical history and are fit enough to keep your mouth open, dental implants are possible. We may need to increase the amount of bone present at the position the implant is to be placed. This can usually be done when the implant is placed or occasionally before placement. We have many satisfied patients from the main locations adjacent to our practice in Chelsea, Kensington and Westminster but we are also pleased to accept implant cases from across London and further afield.

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I have just been diagnosed with brittle bone disease (osteoporosis), can I have implants?

It is important that you have a full, thorough dental assessment as one of the side effects of the drugs (bisphosphonates) that are used to treat this disease makes implant surgery risky. This is particularly true if you’ve been taking this drug for many years. We will make an assessment of this specific risk as part of the consultation.

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Are all dental implants the same?

No they are not! There are over 500 different implant brands and they are all very different in their design. We have chosen brands with the most extensive published evidence for success. They are Nobel Biocare, Straumann, Astra, Biomet 3i. On the very rare occasions when things go wrong, the customer service of these companies is excellent. They (like us) are committed to putting things right.

Here is an excellent video about dental implants from one of our preferred providers, Biomet 3i - click here to view.

Dental Implant Brands

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Are dental implants painful?

No they are not. They are usually placed after making the gums numb with a local anaesthetic. Most single tooth replacements can be done in 40-60minutes! If required, we can organise sedation or general anaesthesia. This isn’t necessary for the majority of patients.

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What does teeth-in-a-day mean?

This is a procedure where teeth are extracted and a crown, bridge or denture is attached to the implant on the same day. This term is misleading as there would usually have been a number of appointments before surgery for impressions, x-rays and other preparatory procedures that allow for the placement of temporary teeth after surgery. We offer this type of treatment.

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Do implants last forever?

Natural teeth need regular maintenance by with a hygienist and your general dentist. The same is true of dental implants. Our treatment plans will include information about your personalised maintenance needs. This will include brushing twice a day and cleaning with floss and interdental brushes. Most scientific studies show that the majority of implants are still functioning very well after 10-15 years of service. Assuming you strictly adhere to our maintenance regime, your implants should last at least this long

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Why should I have my implant placed by a periodontist?

Periodontists are fully qualified dentists who have had further training in the diagnosis and treatment of problems around teeth and dental implants. We are also highly-skilled surgeons.  Periodontics is a sub speciality of Restorative dentistry so we also have advanced training in the planning and placement of implants and their final restoration with crowns or dentures.

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What should I expect at my first appointment?

At your first appointment at Knightsbridge Periodontics the Periodontist (Dr Giedrys-Leeper or Dr Sodeinde) will discuss with you in detail, your particular concerns about your teeth and will carry out a thorough examination with appropriate x-rays, if necessary, in order to arrive at a proper diagnosis.

The periodontist will then discuss with you in detail, different treatment options and associated costs and the time commitments involved with different treatments. This discussion will be summarised and sent to you for your further consideration.

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Fees

Please see our Fees Page for a guide to fees for dental implant treatments.

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