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:
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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:
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.
Only specialist oral and maxillofacial surgeons can provide the full scope and widest options of both in-rooms and hospital-based dental implant procedures.
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.
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).
When intravenous sedation or general anaesthetic is required, they always use specialist anaesthetists.