Hard decision to make because of cost but really when it meant other teeth would not be affected seemed the best solution.

What types of implant system are there?

Types of Dental Implants

There are many different manufacturers of dental implants in the market, and their systems vary a great deal. We use 2 different types of implant at Combe Road:  “Bicon®” and “Imtec®” “Standard” Implant  “Mini” Implant:

  • Bicon is our preferred system for most applications as we consider that it provides a better bacterial seal, and therefore reduced risk of infection, than other systems.
  • Imtec is a “mini” implant system that can be used where there is only a small gap to be filled, but its main use is to retain dentures using a form of “press stud” fastener.

Both implant systems have been in use for over 20 years, so they are therefore well-proven.

Can I get it cheaper elsewhere?

We have selected Bicon® and Imtec® as the systems of choice for Combe Road:

  • Bicon® has been in production since 1985; the system has an excellent track record and we have every confidence that it will prove to be one of the best systems and, therefore, that it will remain supportable long into the future.

  • The Imtec® system was patented in 1998 and is the leading mini-implant system.  It has recently become part of the international 3M Group and we are therefore confident in its long-term future.

However, we recognise that there are other systems available that patients may wish to consider.  If you are considering having a different implant system, please research the manufacturer thoroughly – not only for the technical merits of their system but also for the availability of long-term support. Different systems require their own specific instruments and components from different systems cannot be mixed.  If you cannot replace a crown then you will end up with a well-integrated but useless implant, which is rather like having a car that you can’t get the part for!

We recognise that implants are expensive, although we do believe that the improvement they can give to you makes them value for money.  There are articles in the press and adverts promoting overseas clinics as providing a cheaper option.  If you are considering this, please ensure that:

1. The system is the right one for you

2. You know that the dentist performing the operation is fully trained and experienced in the system being used.

3. You understand fully the terms of any guarantee on offer – will it be honoured by the clinic or by the individual dentist – who are you contracting with for this treatment – will they be accessible for the     full term of the guarantee?

4. Full after-care support is being offered – both short and long-term.

5. You know how many visits will be necessary to complete the full treatment plan, including resolution of any post-operative problems, and have budgeted accordingly.

6. You know how long each stay will need to be to ensure that any short-term problems can be addressed.

We have also noticed that patients with active gum disease have been given implant treatment plans by other clinics both in the UK and abroad without reference to treating the gum disease first. It is essential that any gum disease should be eliminated before implant treatment commences, otherwise the disease can spread to the implant causing the expensive implant treatment to fail within just a few years.

You should also be aware that, although we can continue to treat you as normal for all other areas of your mouth, once you have commenced implant treatment with another dentist (other than through referral from us) we cannot carry out any treatment related to the implant.  This is partly because we will probably not have knowledge of the system being used (or have the required instruments) but also because of potential problems of medical and legal liability if we intervene in another dentist’s treatment plan.  You need to ensure that you can return to the implant clinic for all items of treatment or in the case of any problems.