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Dental implants? First think about which clinic you are going to choose 

PAGE 33 ARTEDENTAL

Dental implants are, today and according to experts, the best solution to the loss of teeth.

It is practically imperceptible that it is an artificial substitute. Unlike dentures or artificial bridges, they are “bolted” to the bone, and therefore do not move.

But the best thing of all and an aspect the patient does not usually value is its functionality: they behave like natural teeth. The bite is the same thanks to the adjustment of the dentist and the prosthetist and do not allow the loss of bone mass or the remains of food being introduced into the cavities, preventing infections.

These “screws” are made of biocompatible materials that prevent the rejection of our organism, such as titanium. Its function is to replace the root of a lost tooth. The abutment is attached to it, a piece of high precision that connects this root with the crown or tooth.

Currently implants are no longer a luxury item, but do not let yourself be seduced by excessively reduced prices. The advisable thing is to go to clinics with experience, where the responsible ones are experts and the materials of first quality. When the operation is performed by a prestigious dentist with the best materials, provided that the patient meets the necessary conditions, implants are a long-term solution, a factor that ultimately results in a lower cost.

Víctor Cubillo, surgeon, implantologist and medical director of the Artedental clinic in Tenerife, one of the centres with the longest trajectory in this specialty, explains what should be the steps to follow in implant placement: “In the first place, you should always do clinical and radiological exam to determine the most appropriate solution “.

Implants and prostheses must be adapted to the conditions of each patient, so do not rely on clinics that advertise fixed and very low cost offers.

“After the analysis, the tooth or affected teeth are removed and the implant is screwed to the bone. This operation lasts between two and three hours, and despite appearing complex, it is one of the simplest and with less risk. In general, a specialist admi-nisters local anesthesia. The patient is conscious but does not feel pain. Finally a pro-visional or definitive prosthesis is placed, depending on the system that the patient chooses or that the dentist reco-mmends,” continues the di-rector of Artedenal.

Once the operation is finished, the implant must be integrated into the bone, which is its support. The healing and integration period can last between three and six months. Then we proceed to place the final prosthesis if there is a provisional, manufactured and carved by the prosthetics.

It is essential to have technicians of great skill capable of making the visible part as similar to natural teeth in terms of textures, colour and shape; and it is not an easy task.

“In Artedental we have the master Fernando Griffón, considered one of the best prosthetists in Spain,” explains Cubillo. These technicians must work in true detail. They mill, they carve, they paint. Each shape, each flute, each colour is essential for the piece to mimic a real denture. And not any denture, but the one that best fits the aesthetics and physiology of each person. It is a work of incredible precision.

Griffón’s background and skills have positioned him as an ambassador in Spain for the BDT technique, which uses the Pekk or BioHpp prosthesis as a structure, a high-performance polymer used to manufacture hip or spinal prostheses; and even airplanes. Its characteristics make it more aesthetic, solid, resistant and durable. No less important is the adjustment between prosthesis and implant, which must be exact and which is carefully designed by computer.

The cost-benefit advantage of implants is unparalleled. There are cheaper solutions, but not in the long term, because of their quality and durability. The average price in Spain of an implant according to the Spanish Society of Periodontics and Osseointegration (SEPA) ranges from 300 to over 1,000. But you have to be very careful. In general, if a clinic offers an implant at 300, it refers only to the implant, not to the intervention, exams, visits or additional treatments; and probably these implants are what is known in the industry as “low cost”. A trusted clinic will never try to persuade the patient with false advertising techniques.

Artedental, besides being specialised in dental implants, is a reference centre in the training of dentists for various implant houses.

“During the last twenty years, Artedental has not stopped renewing itself,” explains the center’s manager, Amaya Sáez. “We invest in the latest in technology and knowledge; and we demand a high degree of training among our workers. ” The appearance of the clinic is also different: from each cabinet you can see impressive views of the Orotava Valley, because the entire facade is composed of windows that show from within, but not from outside. “Having the confidence of the patient is essential, and making it comfortable and peaceful is beneficial for both the patient and the dentist,” he concludes.