As in most professions dentistry has areas of skill that people gain more qualifications and experience in than others. Just as in the medical profession’s, the first point of call in the UK is usually the general practitioner, for a dental practitioner it is the general dentist. They do the routine work of check-ups and remedial work, but sometimes they need to refer their patients to other dentists who have greater experience and knowledge. One of those is dentist Joe Bhat, an oral surgeon who has spent many years working with dental implants.
Dentist Joe Bhat works in London at Moor Park Specialist Dental Centre, but receives referrals from around 300 general dentists throughout the UK.
He works solely with dental implants. This kind of tooth replacement treatment has been around for about 40 years. Dentist Joe Bhat only works on complex cases. Dental implant surgery is generally pretty straightforward -as long as the patient has a healthy jawbone, they can have dental implants. The complications start to arise when the bone is no longer as good as it used to be.
There is a process that starts to take place almost as soon as someone loses a tooth. The tooth is no longer there to receive the hundreds of tiny impacts a day that teeth have when they knock against each other. Those impacts send tremors down through the tooth root and out into the surrounding jawbone. These tremors act as a constant reminder to the bone cells that the jawbone is in use, and they renew themselves accordingly. However, when the tooth falls out and those signals stop, the jawbone around the now empty socket not only no longer renews itself, it starts to actively dissolve itself in a process called resorption. The bone can lose as much as 25% of its density and size in the first year alone after tooth loss.
This is when complications can set in and general dentists may well need to refer their patients to dentist Joe Bhat, who has dealt with thousands of difficult cases in his many years as a dental implant surgeon.