According to research, about 180 million Americans are missing at least one tooth. Suffice it to say, tooth loss, whether due to decay or trauma, is a very common problem! This can lead to difficulties eating, speaking, and even feeling confident enough to smile. However, there is now a definitive way to reverse tooth loss – dental implants. With this solution, Dr. Afshin Azmoodeh and the rest of our team at Epic Family Dentistry can effectively replace any number of teeth for a lifetime to come. Ready to start rebuilding your smile? Call us to learn more about how dental implants in Carrollton can help!
Dental implants are the only treatment that actually replaces the entire structure of a missing tooth both above and below the gum line. The implant itself is a small titanium post that Dr. A can surgically place directly into the jawbone to recreate the root structure of a tooth. Because titanium is biocompatible, the implant fuses to the surrounding bone and tissues in a process called osseointegration, which takes several months. Afterward, Dr. A will place metal abutments on top of your implants, which can secure your custom-made restoration – be it a dental crown, bridge, or denture.
As the only option to rebuild missing teeth from the roots up, dental implants are able to look, feel, and function almost exactly like your natural pearly whites. Their foundation in your jawbone also helps them last for decades with the right care. That’s why Dr. A will almost always recommend dental implants for eligible patients.
The dental implant process takes several months and multiple appointments, but their unmatched reliability and longevity make them worth the wait. Plus, Dr. A can perform every step of the treatment right here in our Carrollton dental office! While everyone’s tooth replacement journey will differ slightly, here are the four basic steps involved in getting dental implants:
Before you begin treatment, you need to meet with Dr. A to determine whether you’re a good candidate for dental implants. He can answer your questions and evaluate your specific case to make sure that you have sufficient jawbone density to support dental implants and that you’re in good oral health. Once these criteria have been met, he will create a personalized treatment plan and go over the details of the procedure with you. Because we want you to feel completely confident about your treatment, don’t hesitate to ask any questions you may have.
After your consultation, you’re ready for the next step—Dr. A will insert the “root” or titanium post into the socket. This requires a minor surgical procedure with minimal risks, especially when you have someone of Dr. A’s advanced and specialized training, skills, and experience performing the work. During the entire placement procedure, we will do our best to make sure you feel comfortable. We will also provide you with specific care instructions to ensure that you heal properly afterward and prepare for the next step toward your restored smile.
For several months after the placement procedure, you will undergo a process called osseointegration, in which the post stimulates the jawbone to grow and surround it completely. To avoid potential failure, it’s important to make sure that your jawbone has fully bonded to the post before we place a restoration on top. Otherwise, the dental implant will not have the stability and strength to function as intended. Once the gums and bone have healed sufficiently, we’ll attach the abutment, or a small metal piece that connects the post to the dental restoration.
The final step is putting the restoration into place on top of the abutment, completing the dental implant. Depending on the number of implants you have, we can attach any dental prosthetic, including a dental crown, fixed bridge, or implant denture, to complete your smile. We use high-quality, durable restorations that look just like natural teeth, and because dental implants are so secure, you can feel confident in biting, chewing, talking, laughing, and smiling without worrying about your new teeth slipping out of place.
Dental implants have many unique benefits compared to traditional bridges and dentures. Because they are anchored within bone, patients don’t have to worry about their new teeth moving around in their mouth or breaking when they eat certain foods. They are usually topped with custom-made porcelain restorations and have no noticeable metal clips or clasps, helping them blend seamlessly into any smile. And, with the proper care, they can easily be expected to last for 30 years or more.
With an implant post serving as a new root, it stimulates your jaw to encourage bone growth. This preserves your jaw’s density to stop dental drift. Any remaining natural teeth will have the support they need to stay in place. This reduces your risk of tooth decay, gum disease, and additional tooth loss to lower your long-term dental expenses.
Tooth decay is the biggest threat to your natural teeth, but you won’t need to worry about it when you have dental implants. Although they aren’t subject to decay, that doesn’t mean you can skip your oral hygiene habits. You’re still at risk of a preventable gum infection called peri-implantitis. You can protect your investment by maintaining your oral hygiene at home and visiting your dentist at least twice a year.
Dental implants have over a 95% success rate. They are proven to last for several decades with the right aftercare, like brushing, flossing, and visiting your dentist in Carrollton regularly for a cleaning and checkup.
You’ll initially pay more for dental implants upfront than other treatments, but they are actually more cost-effective long-term. They have the potential to last for a lifetime, so you’ll never need to spend money to have them replaced, like that of a bridge, partial, or denture. Not to mention, they improve your oral health to reduce your risk of preventable dental issues, like tooth decay and gum disease. This will save you even more money down the road.
Tooth loss can make you look years older than your true age. Replacing your missing teeth to restore a complete smile will make you look younger. It also provides your facial tissues with support to prevent premature wrinkles or sagging skin.
Dental implants don’t rely on adjacent teeth, suction, or an adhesive to hold them in place. Instead, your jawbone fuses to the posts to permanently eliminate any slipping or irritation. In fact, you’ll regain as much as 70% of your natural biting force. You can chew, speak, and smile without any worry because your new teeth will stay firmly in place.
The kind of dental restoration that you receive will be based on the number of teeth you’re missing. One of the reasons that dental implants are so popular is their ability to restore one tooth, multiple teeth, or even your whole smile. Here are the ways that we restore your dental implants:
If you’re missing a single tooth, Dr. A will use an implant-retained crown to return the natural look and feel to your smile. This not only restores your appearance, but it also keeps your natural teeth from shifting.
If you’re missing multiple teeth consecutively, we can use a dental bridge to literally bridge the gap in your smile. Using dental implants on either side of a custom-made dental bridge, we can give you a natural looking, feeling, and functioning smile.
If you’re missing all or the majority of the teeth in your mouth, Dr. A can use dental implants to retain dentures. This allows us to replace all of your teeth at once with the stability and biting power of dental implants.
Professionals and patients who have gotten the procedure will both agree that investing in dental implants is well worth it. That’s because they have so many benefits to offer that make it an incredibly cost-effective procedure, such as a 35+ year lifespan. Other perks of choosing implants include preservation of facial structure, enhanced speaking and chewing ability, easy maintenance, and prevention of additional tooth loss.
Do you need to undergo gum disease therapy or a bone graft before we can place your implants? These procedures can help ensure the success of treatment; however, keep in mind that any preparatory work will increase the overall cost. At Epic Family Dentistry, we provide the convenience of one bill, instead of sending you to another practice for the placement procedure. This means our trusted team can guide you through the entire process and consolidate the price you pay.
The cost of your dental implants in Carrollton can range based on several variables, which is why it’s difficult to give an estimate before examining your mouth. The number of implants that you need and where you need them will contribute to the cost, but the price may also vary based on the type and brand we choose to use for your unique situation. Just as you can choose the make and model of a car, we select high quality implant parts to go into your smile.
The restoration you need will depend on the number of teeth you’re missing and your desired results. There are three different types of implant restorations we may suggest:
Unfortunately, it’s not common for dental insurance companies to cover the cost of dental implants because they still consider them a “cosmetic treatment.” However, it’s still worthwhile to contact your provider directly and ask, especially if you also require preliminary work like a tooth extraction or gum disease therapy. Often these procedures are covered. At Epic Family Dentistry, we’re more than happy to file claims on your behalf and figure out how to maximize your benefits.
Our team at Epic Family Dentistry believes that cost shouldn’t stand between you and your restored smile. That’s why we do everything we can to make this advanced treatment as affordable as possible. Not only do we work with your insurance, but we also offer a free implant consultation and accept payment through CareCredit, a trusted financier. At little or even no interest, you could break up the total for implants into easier monthly payments.
Getting a dental implant in Carrollton is a long-term commitment; there are several stages to the procedure, and the implant itself can last the rest of your life as long as you take good care of it. As such, it’s important to fully understand what the process entails and what you can expect. Below are the answers to some common questions we’ve received; if you still have other concerns, get in touch with Dr. A!
You’ll have to check your policy to see what is or isn’t covered. Many insurance companies consider implants to be a cosmetic treatment, which often means they won’t provide coverage. However, even in these cases, they might help pay for the restoration (meaning the crown, bridge, or dentures your implants will support) as well as certain related procedures. For example, if your dentist in Carrollton tells you that you need gum disease treatment before your implant surgery, you could receive benefits to help pay for the procedure. We can help you file any necessary claims for your insurance provider.
The entire dental implant process can take several months. Much of that time comes after the surgery to place the implants in your jaw. You need to wait for your gums to heal and the bone to fuse with the metal post (a process called osseointegration) before you can receive your new prosthetic teeth. This typically takes about six months. Of course, if you need additional procedures such as bone grafting to prepare your mouth for implant surgery, it could affect the timeline. Dr. A will help you figure out how long you can expect the entire process to take and plan accordingly.
Dental implants have been used since the 1950’s, and the technology and techniques used to place them have only improved with time. Nowadays, the procedure has a success rate of 95% or better! Of course, even with those odds it’s still possible for implants to fail; common reasons for this include physical trauma damaging the implant post, advanced gum disease destroying the bone in that area, or implant simply failing to integrate with the jaw for whatever reason. Contact our office as soon as you notice a problem with your implants (such as looseness, swelling, or pain); acting quickly will give us the best chance of saving your new tooth.
Taking care of dental implants is simple. You can brush and floss like you would normally; pay particular attention to the area under and around the crown. It’s also important to protect your implants the same way you would protect your natural teeth; that means always wearing a mouthguard while playing sports and never biting down on hard objects (which includes peppermints, fingernails, ice, and packages). And of course, don’t forget to visit Dr. A twice a year for routine checkups!