Dental implants overview

Bring to the table win-win survival strategies to ensure proactive domination. At the end of the day, going forward, a new normal that has evolved from generation runway.

Replace one tooth or several teeth, permanently

Dental implants can replace a tooth or a number of teeth that you’ve lost due to injury, disease or decay. Tooth implants look just like normal teeth and they’re the most permanent and long-term solution to replace missing teeth.

Why replace a missing tooth with an implant?

  • It looks better: Even if your missing tooth is not in the front of your mouth there is good reason to replace it. This is because bones are similar to muscles, if you don’t stimulate them, they‘ll shrink. When lost teeth aren’t replaced, your biting forces decrease and therefore your jaw bone diminishes. This can lead to a shrunken, prematurely-aged appearance.
  • It’s more functional: When a tooth is missing, the opposing and neighbouring teeth can start to move. This can make eating and talking difficult. It can also lead to bite problems and jaw pain.
  • It protects other teeth: If a tooth is not replaced, other teeth have increased wear and are more likely to have problems.

There are three parts to a tooth implant:

A crown

This is an artificial tooth that fits over the screw and is shaped like your missing tooth.

An abutment

This is a small metal post which joins the screw to the artificial tooth.

A titanium screw

This is implanted in the bone of your jaw replaces the root of your missing tooth. The screw fuses with the bone forming a strong and stable platform for the replacement tooth after 3 to 6 months.

If you’ve lost several teeth in a row, you may need a bridge with a titanium implant on either end and a row of artificial teeth (attached to each other) bridging the gap.

Am I a candidate for dental implants?

If you’ve lost a tooth or teeth and you want a long-term solution, you may be a candidate for a dental implant. Before your health care practitioner can recommend implants, there are several questions that need to be answered:

  • Do you have adequate bone volume and density in your jawbone?
  • Has your jaw has stopped growing? It usually stops growing in your 20s, but until this happens you would not be able to have an implant.
  • Do you have good general health? Certain chronic diseases including diabetes, haemophilia, connective tissue disease, immune deficiencies, cancer and some heart conditions can affect the outcome of your implant surgery.
  • Are you taking medicines? Some medicines — such as steroids — supress your immune system and can affect whether or not an implant can be placed.
  • Do you have good oral health?
  • Do you chain smoke? Implants are not recommended if you chain smoke. Some other lifestyle factors can mean that implants are not recommended.

Because Dr van Mourik is both a dentist and a medical doctor he can assess your overall health as well as your dental health so that you get the best possible implant outcome.

Can dental implants replace false teeth?

More and more people are choosing implant supported dentures over regular dentures (false teeth) because they look better, are more comfortable to talk and eat with, and they’re easier to maintain. All on 4® dental implants  are permanent implants that can support a denture immediately after implant placement.

Virtual dental implant surgical planning

For your tooth implant to be stable, you need to have enough healthy bone in your jaw. If you lost a tooth some time ago, the bone in your jaw may already have deteriorated. Likewise, if you’ve had an injury or there’s a bone defect you were born with, you may not have enough healthy bone to hold a dental implant in place.

As part of planning your procedure, Dr van Mourik will take a ‘cone beam x-ray’ and scan it into a computer to generate a precise 3D model. He will then use ‘virtual surgical planning’ to assess your anatomy as well as the amount and quality of bone. This may involve making a customised computer-generated guide for the surgery.

If there isn’t enough bone to hold an implant, Dr van Mourik may recommend bone grafting to increase the amount of healthy bone in the area. Alternatively, zygomatic implants (cheek implants) can be placed if little bone remains.

Where dental implant surgery is performed

Dr van Mourik performs dental implant surgery in his private rooms under local anaesthetic or intravenous (IV) sedation. He also does it at a number of accredited private hospitals under general anaesthetic.

Dr Van Mourik will discuss the options with you and the choice of venue will depend on the extent of the surgery, your general health and your personal preference.

Anaesthetist or sedationist?

Some dental practitioners employ a nurse sedationist to perform IV sedation. For safety reasons, Dr van Mourik always uses an anaesthetist who is a specially trained medical doctor.

Recovery after dental implant surgery

Day surgery: If you’ve general anaesthetic or IV sedation you will require someone to assist you get home. If done under local anaesthetic, you can drive home yourself.

Pain management: Most people are surprise to find that pain is minimal. Normal painkillers are usually all you’ll need. An icepack can help reduce any swelling or pain.

Work/School: Most people return to work one day after their implant surgery, while a few have to take more than a day or two off.

Stitches: Disolving stitches are used in most cases. They gradually dissolve over 1-2 weeks.

Diet: Soft food diet for 1-2 days after surgery. By 1-2 weeks after surgery you’ll most likely be eating and drinking normally.

Follow up: Review appointments are part of our service to ensure you are healing well.

Dr Van Mourik will give you detailed post-operative instructions during your initial consultation. To maximise your chance of making a quick recovery without complications, please pay careful attention to these instructions. General information can be found on the Post-op and Patient Care page.

Possible Complications

It’s unusual to have complications if you get a skilled oral and maxillofacial surgeon to perform  your implant surgery.

However, all surgeries have some potential risks and complications. The risks are higher if your general health is poor, if you smoke, have diabetes, have poor oral hygiene or if you’ve had radiotherapy to your jaw. Certain medications can also increase the risk of complications.

For dental implants the most frequently-encountered complications are:

  • Infection
  • A loose screw – If the implant screw doesn’t fuse with your jawbone properly, you will need to have the procedure redone after the bone has healed.
  • A loose post (abutment) – Sometimes the metal post that fits into the screw comes loose. If this happens it can be tightened or replaced.
  • Facial and oral numbness caused by nerve injury

What does a dental implant cost?

Medicare will reimburse you for part of your initial consultation.

Dr van Mourik will give you a written quote for the cost of your dental implant surgery at the initial consultation. We’ll help you make applicable Medicare and private health insurance claims so that you’ll know how much of the cost will be covered.

If an anaesthetist is involved, we’ll give you contact details for the anaesthetist so you can obtain their fee schedule. Medicare and private health insurance will cover part of the anaesthetist’s costs.

Why choose an oral and maxillofacial surgeon?

Widest scope of treatment options

Only specialist oral and maxillofacial surgeons can provide the full scope and widest options of both in-rooms and hospital-based dental implant procedures.

Surgery is performed to highest technical standard

They have the highest level of training and skills for oral surgery, this leads to better quality surgery. They can confidently perform more complicated surgeries such as those involving bone grafts.

Appropriately manage your medical conditions with a decreased chance of complications

Because oral and maxillofacial surgeons have medical training, they can manage your other medical conditions and medications to decrease risk. If a complication does occur, they have the skills to manage it.


Because Oral and Maxillofacial surgeons are medically trained, they only operate under hospital grade sterilisation protocol (carried out in accordance with AS/NZS 4815:2006 standard).

Only use specialist anaesthetists

When intravenous sedation or general anaesthetic is required, they always use specialist anaesthetists.

Dr van Mourik is a highly experienced Oral and Maxillofacial surgeon. He explains things clearly and he’s a good listener, so do ask him questions about your dental implant surgery and tell him about any concerns you have — he’ll take the time to answer and manage your concerns sensitively.

Professional medical services

Learn more about dental implants

Single tooth implant

Replace a missing tooth with a permanent tooth implant that looks real.

Read More

Zygomatic dental implants

If you want an implant supported denture for your top jaw, but the bone isn’t strong enough, this could solve the problem.

Read More

Bone and soft tissue grafting

If you haven’t enough healthy bone or soft tissue in the implant area, this can be addressed first.

Read More

Implant supported dentures

Replace several teeth or all your teeth with a denture that’s fixed permanently in place.

Read More

All on 4® dental implants

Find out about the denture that’s fully supported using 4 implants and ready in 48 hours or less.

Read More

Learn more about dental implant surgery through our comprehensive guides.

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Suite 104, 568 Oxford St, Bondi Junction 2022, NSW

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