Dental implants are a comfortable, natural-looking option to replace missing teeth. Implants not only preserve the bone tissue, they also act and look like natural teeth – allowing you to eat and speak clearly. They can be used to replace one or many missing teeth.
Because implants are fixed in the mouth—rather than being removable, like dentures—they provide a return to much of the comfort & function of your natural teeth. Expanded chewing capability means you can enjoy more nutritious foods, adding to your overall health & wellbeing. Dental implants can help avert future dental problems, especially the gradual bone loss in the jaw linked with missing teeth.
The most significant advantage implants have over dentures is that they’re permanent. Unlike removable dentures or partial dentures, implants do not require messy adhesives or false teeth getting in the way of speech or eating. Also, because they’re permanent, implants will continuously be a perfect fit, unlike dentures, which may need to be refitted or replaced over time.
Are Implants Right for Me?
Patients who have any of the following conditions will need to discuss their options with Dr. Faiella.
Implants can either reinforce or replace existing dental work, such as bridges or dentures.
As long as there is enough bone tissue in the area, dental implants may still be successful. If there is not enough bone, bone-grafting procedures may be required before an implant can be placed.
Discuss any medications or existing medical conditions with your doctor. Generally, if you can have typical dental work done, then you can undergo the dental implant procedure.
Gum disease can affect the success of a dental implant. Patients with moderate to severe gum disease may require treatment prior to implant placement.
Discuss how often you smoke with your doctor. Smoking can affect the success of the implant as well as your overall dental health.
Dental implants are now the generally preferred tooth replacement option over traditional treatments, which include:
- Replacement tooth or teeth are suspended between the remaining natural teeth on either side
- The preparation necessary to do so may make the healthy teeth adjacent more susceptible to damage in the future
- Often need to be replaced once or twice over a lifetime, depending on the patient’s age
Dental Implant Basics
When considering dental implants as a solution to a missing tooth or teeth, it is important to have a basic understanding of the implant procedure. This understanding also highlights the benefits of dental implants.
An implant is made of three equally important parts:
What is the Process of Getting an Implant?
Caring for Your Implants
Common Questions About Dental Implants
Missing teeth not only affects your oral health, but your quality of life as well. Without tooth replacement, your smile is less attractive and you may experience pain or difficulty eating and speaking, which can be embarrassing. Dental implants can alleviate these concerns by acting as natural teeth.
Dental implants are a safe, predictable solution for replacing missing teeth. Implants look and feel like your natural teeth. Patients with implants experience improved taste and appetite as they are able to chew without pain or discomfort. Dental implants also improve your aesthetic appearance by rebuilding your smile, and preserving your facial structure. Your overall quality of life can improve with dental implants.
There are no limitations as to who is eligible for implants. They are a suitable solution for all ages, provided there is enough bone in which to set the implants.
Implants successfully integrate with the jaw bone in 97% of cases. When integration is not successful, your doctor will attempt to place the implant in a slightly different location within the jaw in hopes of promoting better integration.
No. A local anesthetic is administered before and during surgery to ensure the patient does not feel pain or discomfort throughout the procedure. Usually your doctor will prescribe post-operative pain medication to minimize any discomfort that may initially occur after the surgery.
Patients can often return to work the next day. Your doctor will discuss your post-operative care plan with you prior to the procedure.
Dental implants may be covered under certain policies. Coverage is generally limited to what is covered for bridges or dentures.
If you do not opt for dental implants, you will experience steady, gradual bone loss, causing additional problems with your remaining healthy teeth. This bone loss can eventually impact your denture fit and affect your facial appearance and diet. It is important to replace missing teeth before these side effects occur. The risks incurred by waiting to replace teeth may make you ineligible for dental implants and require bone grafting.