Missing teeth can affect your appearance and lower your self-confidence. Dental appliances like dentures can be difficult to care for and slide around in your mouth. As a result, you may feel limited and have to change your diet.
Dental implants are made to look and function just like a natural tooth. Unlike dentures, you won’t have to worry about what you eat or how you care for them, because they’re sturdy and designed to last a lifetime.
The first step in the dental implant process is to schedule a consultation with a certified prosthodontist. Both Dr. Oettinger and Dr. Sulik are accomplished prosthodontists who are highly experienced in placing implants.
At your consultation, your dentist will examine your teeth and assess what kind of procedure is best for you. X-rays of your mouth may be taken to determine if you need any supplemental procedures, like a bone graft or sinus lift, to strengthen your jawbone before the implant is placed.
If your dentist decides you can move forward with the implant process, he’ll place the first part of the implant. This is called the fixture and is usually made of titanium. The fixture acts like a natural tooth root and anchors the implant.
It often takes a couple of weeks for the area around the fixture to heal. It’s important that the fixture heals and bonds with your jawbone properly so your implant will stay in place.
Once the surgical area is healed, you’ll come back to our office for your final restoration. At this appointment, your dentist will place the abutment and the crown.
The crown is made from tooth-colored material, so it’ll blend in with the rest of your teeth. You can take care of your implant the same way as the rest of your teeth -- with regular brushing and flossing, as well as routine dental cleanings and exams.
If you have one or more missing teeth, you may be a candidate for dental implants. If you’re healthy enough to have oral surgery, you can probably be approved for implants easily.
Some cases need to be evaluated on an individual basis. If you are a heavy smoker, have a chronic disorder like diabetes or heart disease, or if you’ve had radiation therapy, you can contact our office to schedule a consultation and we’ll determine if implants are the right choice for you.
Dental implants can last a lifetime with proper care. Many implants last about 20 years but they can last longer.
The cost of dental implants varies based on how many you need and what materials you choose. The average cost of an implant is between $3000 to $4500.
A dental implant is made to function just like a natural tooth, so all you have to do is brush and floss your teeth daily. Visiting the dentist every six months for cleanings and exams is also vital to maintaining your implant.
Dental implants are safe if your dentist is qualified to place implants. The greatest risks associated with implants are accidents during procedures, and those are rare.
Some dental insurance plans cover part of the cost of implants, but you’ll have to contact your insurance provider to find their policy. For your convenience, we offer financing options to help keep the cost of your procedure in your budget.
If something happens with your dental implants, contact our office immediately to let us know what happened. We can get you in for an emergency appointment if you need one.
If you want a more beautiful and comfortable smile, we can help. Dental implants look and feel natural, so you can live your best life.