Dental Implants

WHAT ARE DENTAL IMPLANTS? Dental implants are artificial tooth roots, typically made from titanium, that are surgically positioned into the jawbone beneath your gums. Once secured into your jaw, replacement teeth can be mounted onto them. Generally, candidates who seek dental implants are those who have lost a tooth or several teeth, perhaps to periodontal diseases, an injury or for some other reason. HOW DO DENTAL IMPLANTS WORK? Once the dental implant is secured into the jaw bone, they provide stable support for artificial teeth. They allow for an individual tooth, several teeth, or an entire arch to then be permanently fitted into the mouth. WHO IS A CANDIDATE FOR DENTAL IMPLANTS? To be a candidate for dental implants, healthy gums and adequate bone is required. The jawbone must be in a healthy condition, with enough bone to sustain having the implants fused to it. Often when patients turn towards dental implants for missing teeth, the teeth have been absent for some time. This could be because, at first, it was just one absent tooth that wasn’t too noticeable or because the patient had previously been wearing dentures. This causes a problem because when teeth are absent from the mouth, the jawbone begins to deteriorate from the lack of stimulation that the tooth root used to provide. However, if this is the case then there are other procedures that can be undertaken to get the mouth ready and in a healthy enough condition to sustain dental implants, such as bone and gum grafting. WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF DENTAL IMPLANTS? Dental implants are becoming the preferred treatment for tooth...
Antibacterial 3D printed tooth

Antibacterial 3D printed tooth

Dentistry is getting even more exciting with the advent of 3D printing and evolving materials. Lost a tooth? A new 3D-printed replacement might protect against future cavities. Published earlier this month by researchers at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, “3D-Printable Antimicrobial Composite Resins” details a tooth made from materials that kill bacteria on contact. Read more …. Photo by...
Rebuilding bone in dentistry

Rebuilding bone in dentistry

I need to “grow” more bone before implant treatment, how do dentists rebuild bone? Thanks to research and technology, bone regeneration for implant dentistry is a usual and routine procedure in oral surgery. Understanding the principles of wound healing now allows for regeneration of bone to occur using a variety of techniques. Most include cutting through the gum to expose the bone and then augmenting the existing (insufficient) bone by adding bone grafting materials to it. Hence the name “bone grafting”. Grafting materials include your own bone (sourced from a secondary site), cadaver bone, bovine bone, or synthetic bone. All of these grafting materials have been processed so that they are inert and certified safe for human use. Your body will then grow its own bone around the graft, eventually replacing volume. Healing of the grafted material can be enhanced by using membranes which cover the grafts to promote and enhance healing. See more about how we do our bone grafts...
The hidden cost of missing molars

The hidden cost of missing molars

“I’m only missing a back tooth, you can’t even see it!” The real problem with tooth loss isn’t just aesthetics, it’s the subsequent bone loss. The alveolar bone, which surrounds the teeth, requires regular stimulation (piezoelectric effect – tiny stresses transmitted via the tooth) in order to stay healthy. Without such stimulation the bone will gradually be lost. It is a process of the body to take bone from where it’s not ‘needed’ to where it is needed. Studies have proven that a lost tooth can result in a 25% decrease in bone width in the first year alone, and will continue to decrease in subsequent years. As bone loses width and height, gum tissue also gradually decreases. Ability to chew and to speak can be impaired. The more teeth lost, the more function is lost. Bite collapse can occur when only some of the back teeth, which support the height of the face, are missing. This can cause the front teeth to be more stressed, squashed or pushed forward. Severe bone loss will also result in uncomfortable dentures or the inability to wear one at all. Fortunately, there is way to keep tooth loss from becoming bone loss: it’s the dental implant. Because the implant actually becomes fused to the living bone, it will continue to stimulate the bone and prevent loss. Molars, in fact, are usually the first teeth to be lost. Dealing with that first missing molar will help maintain the integrity of the jaw and the structures they support. Read here for an in-depth discussion on the benefits of dental implants and facial collapse. Photo...
Dr Henry Chan “Master of Science (MSc.) in Oral Implantology”

Dr Henry Chan “Master of Science (MSc.) in Oral Implantology”

It is official. Dr Henry Chan has successfully completed his Masters program at Goethe University in Frankfurt. After almost three years flying between Perth and Frankfurt, and about 10 other seminars/tutorials/conventions in between, a Master Thesis and countless formal case studies later, Henry has earned himself the title “Master of Science (MSc.) in Oral Implantology”. If you are interested to see what the Masters program involved, follow this link to the university’s website here. Congratulations Henry, there are not many dentists in Australia with this title, so we are lucky to have him here in Perth! Watch out – he’s going to need a bigger business card to contain all his long titles, lucky he has a short...
Facial collapse documented on canvas

Facial collapse documented on canvas

Artist: Waldmueller, Ferdinand Georg (1793-1865) Title: Josefine Ernst, (born Stoeger, 1757-1862), 1856 Found during one of Henry’s travels: A painting in the Leopold Museum in Vienna demonstrates the effects of facial collapse. Facial collapse is a condition that occurs when a person has lost their teeth and his or her body starts to absorb the bone that once supported those teeth. It happens over a period of about 10 years as the bone in the jaw shrinks substantially.A person who suffers from facial collapse has a significantly altered appearance and looks much older than he or she actually is. In addition to the physical toll facial collapse takes on a person, it negatively impacts health. How does facial collapse occur? Bones need proper chewing forces to maintain their form and density. The compressive and tensile forces teeth exert on the surrounding bone stimulates the growth and density of the jawbone . When a tooth is lost, the lack of stimulation to its supporting bone will thus cause a decrease in bone volume and integrity. According to credible research, 25% of bone loss occurs during the first year after tooth loss and continues, sometime to the point of fracture. A tooth is necessary for the development of facial bone, and stimulation of this bone by chewing forces is vital for maintaining its structure. This phenomenon has been ignored in the past and is currently being ignored by traditional dentistry. Dentists most often overlook facial bone loss that occurs after tooth extraction. The general public is often not educated about the anatomic, aesthetic, and functional consequences of continued bone loss. In...