Dental implants in Ireland
Dr Richard Lee Kin has written a new article which features in the latest edition of the Irish Dental Hygienists Association (IDHA) Journal. Below is an extract from his article entitled ‘Dental Implants – past and present.’
Despite their presence over a number of years, little has been reported about the demographics of implant placement in the Irish population or the complications that occur. Indeed, even though osseointegrated dental implants have been placed in Ireland since the 1980s. There were no basic demographic data available regarding implant patients or the types of prostheses they received.
The Dublin Dental School & Hospital carried out a study from 2000 to 2006 to construct a database of patients’ . Its first aim was to begin documenting the implant patient population in Ireland. A total of 1,111 implants were placed in 452 patients over the study period. Half of the implants supported single crowns. While the other half supported mainly overdentures and full arch fixed prostheses, with few fixed partial dentures
Only 5 % experienced implant loss and this finding is consistent internationally.
The number of implants placed each year reflects the ever-increasing popularity of implants as a treatment modality. It was noted that there was a seven-fold increase in the number of implants placed between the years 2000 and 2006 (Brennan et al ., 2009 ).
This study was conducted in a hospital setting, but similar increases have been noted in private clinics. In recent years, there has been growing demand in the number of patients having these procedures. This is due to the increase in dental clinics providing this service and advertising directly to the public
Despite the many different types of implant systems available, clinicians in Ireland are in general choosing from a small number. Around 5- 8. This is in part due to the type of courses organised locally and to the significant expenses involved.
With dental tourism growing and the sheer number of different implants being placed, problems may develop. Significant difficulty may be encountered in not only identifying the type of implant placed but the components needed should a problem develop.
Today, with increasing numbers of patients receiving dental implants, it is imperative that all dental clinicians be competent in monitoring and maintaining dental implant health. The next article will highlight some of the practical difficulties encountered in the treatment for peri-implant mucositis and peri-implantitis.