What Are Dental Implants?
An implant is a replacement tooth that consists of an artificial root, an abutment piece, and a dental restoration. The implant itself is a post made of titanium or zirconia and it resembles a small screw.
In a brief and minor surgical procedure, we place an implant post in the bone where a tooth used to be. After that, we attach the abutment which links the implant to the restoration. Once the implant has created a tight seal with the surrounding tissue and integrated with the bone, it is strong enough to bear the pressure of your bite and you will have it covered with a functional and natural-looking restoration. You can get one implant to replace one tooth, or you can get multiple implants to support multi-tooth replacements such as a denture.
Dental implant treatment is one of the most predictably successful treatments in dentistry today. Implants look and feel just like real teeth, and they have the potential to last a lifetime. Understandably, this makes them a better tooth replacement option in comparison with traditional methods like dentures and dental bridges.
Are you interested in getting dental implants in Sarasota? We’re sharing the information you need to know about implants so that you can make an informed decision about your treatment.
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Why You Should Get Dental Implants?
You have other options for replacing your lost teeth, so why should you consider going with dental implants?
The biggest reason boils down to an issue you may not have heard of before: bone resorption.
Natural tooth roots have a dynamic relationship with the bone in your mouth. They stimulate the production of new bone cells and this keeps your bone tissue strong. But once teeth are lost, the surrounding bone can start to break down in a natural process called bone resorption. This happens so that your body can use the minerals from your bone elsewhere in your body.
As the bone in your jaw slowly dissolves, it leaves an unattractive sunken spot in your gums. Such bone loss on a wide scale can cause your entire jaw to gradually shrink, and this leads to a loss of smile height and total facial collapse.
Dentures and dental bridges can neither hide this kind of bone loss, nor can they prevent it. Dental implants, on the other hand, act like natural tooth roots in that they do prevent the loss of bone tissue. They truly are the next best thing to natural teeth.
With this in mind, let’s now consider the other benefits dental implants can provide.
The Benefits of Dental Implants
Losing teeth can be a traumatic and humiliating experience, but you don’t have to accept this as a “normal” part of life. Dental implants give you the chance to take back control of your life and improve the health of your mouth.
- Eat the foods you love – Dental implants are incredibly strong and will let you eat foods that are nearly impossible to eat with dentures. This means you can enjoy more meaningful culinary experiences in social situations and have better nutrition since you won’t have to avoid any particular foods. Implants will let you chew anything from steak to salad to whole apples, just like you do with natural teeth.
- Restore your profile – Getting implants will fill in those empty and collapsed parts of your smile and prevent further facial collapse. This will help you maintain your natural facial profile indefinitely and avoid that sunken-chin look that typifies old age.
- Smile and laugh with confidence – Not only will dental implants fill in those embarrassing gaps and help you smile with pride, but they’ll also give you a greater sense of security in your dental restorations. No matter what you do, your crown, bridge, or denture will stay put and you’ll never have to worry about an embarrassing denture slip again.
- Implant Denture – Two implants can provide more support and stability for your denture than any denture adhesive ever could.
When properly placed and cared for, dental implants can last you for decades, so they are the only true long-term tooth replacement solution. If you want to continue getting the most out of life even after experiencing tooth loss, then you absolutely should give dental implants some consideration.
Dental Implant Restorations
Your dental implant itself will not be visible when you smile because most of it is hidden beneath your gums and bone. The upper portion of your implant sticks out above your gums, and this is covered with a restoration. This is the part of your false tooth that enables you to bite and chew and it’s designed to look just like a real tooth (or teeth).
- Dental Crown – The most common implant restoration, a crown covers single-tooth implants.
- Dental Bridge – Instead of getting a partial denture, replace a row of missing teeth with a dental bridge that rests on one or two implants for support.
- Full-Arch Dental Bridge – In place of full traditional dentures, you can replace all the teeth on the upper or lower half of your mouth with a permanent implant-supported arch of false teeth that use four or more implants for support.
- Implant Denture – Two implants can provide more support and stability for your denture than any denture adhesive ever could.
Your New Life with Dental Implants
Your smile will never be the same after you get a dental implant; it’ll be much better.
It’s easy to take care of your mouth when you have dental implants. Brush your natural teeth as usual with a non-abrasive toothpaste and floss gently around your implant every day. We can show you the best way to do this and to clean under an implant bridge. Take care to protect your implant if you engage in sports as a blow to your mouth can knock out an implant just like any other tooth. Schedule regular checkups to ensure that the tissues around your implant are still healthy. Unlike other tooth replacements, you won’t have to update or replace your implant every few years.
With a little care, your dental implant will stay with you for a lifetime, giving you many years of strong and confident smiles!
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How It Feels to Get an Implant
The procedure is far more comfortable than you might think.
For one thing, we will thoroughly numb the surgical site with a local anesthetic so that you won’t feel pain during your procedure. Secondly, we use advanced dental techniques and treatment planning technology that will help your surgery to be as minimal and brief as possible. And finally, we offer sedation options that can help you relax so much during the surgery that you won’t have any memory of what it felt like.
Most patients who don’t have severe dental anxiety do just fine without sedation, and many of them report feeling bored during their dental implant surgery. In all, placing a single implant should take no more than half an hour.
You may experience some mild swelling and bruise over the course of the next several hours after your dental implant surgery. These effects are typical and easy to manage, however. We’ll send you home after your surgery with written instructions on how to soothe the post-operative pain and swelling so that you can start your recovery process before the local anesthetic starts to wear off. Your surgical site should start to improve by about a week after your procedure.
Remember: dental implant treatment has a high success rate, making it one of the safest and most predictable dental treatments.
Your Dental Implant Treatment Journey: What to Expect
Here are the basic stages in your treatment journey to getting a new smile with implants.
We first need to examine your mouth in a dental implant consultation to find out if you are a candidate. We will take X-rays and a three dimensional CT scan of your jaw to assess the amount of bone you have and to create a “map” for your implant surgery. We will take scans of your teeth and collect other diagnostic information so that we can assemble a complete picture of your mouth that will help us plan your treatment.
After ensuring that your surgical site has been sufficiently numbed with anesthetic, we will create a small hole in your gums to access the underlying bone. We will then drill a small hole into the bone and then place the implant screw in the hole. In some cases, we will close up the gums over the implant to let it heal. In other cases, we place a healing abutment on top of the implant and then close up the gums around the abutment.
You will need to spend some time letting your implant heal over the next few months. Then you’ll come back where we will check your implant to make sure it has formed a tight seal with the bone tissue. If everything looks good, we can begin getting you fitted for your restoration. Once that part is complete, you will have a brand-new and functional (false) tooth.
Dr. Craig M. Misch
Your Dental Implants D.D.S., M.D.S
Dr. Misch has published over 70 scientific articles and 22 textbook chapters on dental implants, bone grafting, and implant prosthodontics. He has been the main podium speaker at numerous conferences including the American Dental Association, Academy of Osseointegration, American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, American Association of Periodontology, American College of Prosthodontics, American Academy of Implant Dentistry, and International Congress of Oral Implantologists. In addition, he has lectured extensively throughout North and South America, as well as Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. Dentistry Today has recognized Dr. Misch as one of the “Leaders in Continuing Dental Education”. He is a consultant and has performed clinical research for many dental manufacturers. Dr. Misch serves on the advisory board for the Michigan-Pittsburgh-Wyss Regenerative Medicine Resource Center providing grants for research on tissue engineering for dental, oral, and craniofacial tissues.
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to schedule an initial consultation & exam.
We need to have a complete picture of your oral health and esthetic smile goals before we can provide you with a treatment quote and get you on the road to a new life with dental implants. Contact us and we will get right back to you to help you schedule your consultation.
Cost of Dental Implants in Sarasota
In Sarasota, you can expect to pay approximately $3,000 – $6,000+ for a single implant plus the abutment and crown. Full-mouth reconstructive dental implants can cost anywhere from $10,000 to $60,000 and up. Planning treatment for each individual patient is a complex process, so you won’t get an accurate treatment quote until we have fully evaluated you in person.
Here are other factors that influence the total cost of your dental implant treatment:
- The type of dental implant you need
- The number of individual implants you need
- The materials and supplies we use in your treatment
- The location of the implant surgical site
- The complexity of your treatment
- Other treatments you may need before or during your implant surgery (like tooth extraction)
- The type of restoration you need for your implants
- How long it takes you to recover from your implant procedure
With so many different factors at play, it’s clear that we cannot provide you with an estimate online or even over the phone. Every dental implant recipient has a unique case, and we can only give you a quote once we have fully evaluated your individual case.
Are There Alternatives To Getting Implants?
You can certainly opt to replace your teeth with a dental bridge or denture. Dental implants are not considered medically necessary. But considering the advantages offered by dental implants, it’s clear that they are the superior solution. You may choose to go with an alternative only if there is a reason that you cannot tolerate the implant surgery or keep your implants healthy at home.
What about the cost? Can you justify spending more for implants than you would spend for a simple denture or bridge? It’s true that dental implant treatment is the bigger investment upfront. Remember, however, that implants have the potential to last you the rest of your life. Other restorations (dentures included) are more prone to damage, wear, and they can negatively impact the health of remaining natural teeth. This means that dentures and bridges need to be regularly adjusted and replaced for a price. In the long run, you could end up spending far more to maintain these comparatively temporary solutions than you would ever spend on a dental implant.
Frequently Asked Questions
The beauty of dental implants is that no one would ever know that you have one unless you told them. Even then, they might not believe you unless you show them an X-ray! Dental implant screws are hidden out of sight beneath your gums, and they are covered with restorations that look just like natural teeth.
In most cases, getting dental implants to support a bridge or false teeth is the better option over getting a denture. This is because doing so means you won’t have a denture resting directly on your gums, chafing your gums and promoting bone resorption in your jaw. However, there are cases where implants are just not a practical choice and a denture is the safer and simpler option. It’s important to discuss the pros and cons of both tooth replacement treatments with your dentist or a skilled implant oral surgeon so that you can make the right choice.
Dental bridges and full or partial dentures are still good choices for replacing teeth. In fact, these are your only options for replacing teeth if dental implants are off the table. Schedule a consultation with our team to learn more about your treatment options if you feel there is a reason you shouldn’t get implants.
For someone to qualify for implants, they should be a grown adult whose jaw and skull have finished growing. They should have good oral health, plenty of healthy bone tissue in their jaw, and no medical issues that would contraindicate dental implant surgery. A good dental implant would also be someone who is capable and willing to practice excellent oral hygiene. You can call us for a consultation if you aren’t sure whether you’re a candidate for implants. Even if there is some factor that disqualifies you at present, we can work with you to help you restore your health with the goal of qualifying to get an implant.
Absolutely. No matter what kind of dental implant restoration you ultimately receive, the goal is to make it look as lifelike as possible. Your opinion will be essential during the restoration planning process to ensure that the result matches exactly what you had in mind. Once your implant treatment is complete, you won’t be able to tell apart your implant from the rest of your teeth.
Modern dental technology has made the dental implant procedure a very predictable and virtually pain-free one. Our team uses highly precise surgical planning technology which results in a very minimally invasive procedure so that you can have a comfortable recovery with almost no bleeding and faster healing.
You could be right back at work as soon as the day after you get your implant. Of course this depends on how your treatment goes and how your body responds to the surgery. Even though dental implant surgery is very minimal, it’s smart to plan to take a day or two off, just in case. Your body needs rest in order to begin the crucial healing process, and you may need more time than you think if your treatment plan includes tooth extractions or multiple implants.
Your implants need to be cared for and maintained much like your other teeth. Having a dental checkup about once every six months should be adequate for keeping your implants healthy, but you may need to visit your dentist more often than that for other dental health reasons.
Daily brushing and gentle flossing along with regular dental checkups is sufficient to keep your implant healthy. You’ll never have to worry about a dental implant developing a cavity as it isn’t a natural tooth, but the surrounding tissues can break down if they become inflamed from poor oral hygiene.
No, unlike other tooth replacement options implants don’t need to be replaced on a regular basis. As long as you keep your mouth healthy, a dental implant can stay with you for life.
Mini implants are dental implant posts with a smaller diameter than regular implant posts. Because they are so thin, mini implants can be placed directly into the gums and bone at the same time, eliminating the need for surgical cutting, bone shaping, and sutures.
Some patients conclude that “mini” must mean “cheap,” but mini implants are not a more cost-effective alternative to regular implants. Although faster and more affordable than regular implants, mini implants can’t deliver the same level of results. There’s no proof that mini implants are as effective and long-lasting as regular implants. Mini dental implants are more prone to damage and failure because they are slimmer and can’t provide adequate support in areas of soft bone tissue.
Mini implants have their place, however. Dental implant surgeons may place them temporarily to support a restoration while waiting for a regular dental implant to heal. A mini implant can also come in handy when there’s not enough space between two front teeth for a regular implant.