FAQs About Dental Implants

What are Dental Implants?

What are Dental Implants

  • Dental implants are rigid ‘artificial tooth roots’ that are made from the metal titanium. They are used to support overlying teeth replacement devices, such as ceramic crowns (in the case of single tooth replacement) or dental bridges (in the case of multiple or full arch replacement). They can also be used to help secure a loose fitting denture.
  • Titanium is incredibly strong, durable and non-corrodible. It is also extremely biocompatible and has the unique property of physically bonding to bone. This process is known as “osseointegration.”

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What are the Benefits of Dental Implants?

  • Great Smile Aesthetics: Dental implants provide sturdy support for crowns and bridges, which typically are virtually indistinguishable from a natural healthy tooth or teeth.
  • Strong Bite: They are strong and thus can support normal chewing forces. This enables patients to enjoy the foods they couldn’t with missing teeth or with removable replacement teeth such as dentures.
  • Non-removable: Dental implant supported crowns and bridges are often non-removable and typically function and feel like natural healthy teeth.
  • Comfortable: Dental implants provide rigid support and anchorage for crowns and bridges so they usually do not put pressure on neighboring teeth or soft tissues (gums) in the mouth like removable dentures do. As a result, the bridges they support tend to feel more comfortable and natural.
  • Improved Speech: By filling the gaps in your smile or securing your bridgework, dental implants can help restore your ability to speak clearly.
  • Promoting Oral Health (Short Term): Replacing missing teeth helps to prevent the adjacent natural teeth from becoming unstable and shifting to fill in the empty spaces. This, in turn, helps prevent the entire tooth row from destabilizing and shifting.
  • Promoting Oral Health (Long Term): Dental implants help to stimulate the jawbone during eating like natural tooth roots do. This helps to maintain bone volume in the jaws as well as jawbone density.
  • Long-term Solution: If looked after properly with good oral hygiene and regular visits to your dentist, dental implants can last decades or even a lifetime.

Click on the link to find out more about the benefits of dental implants and the importance of replacing missing teeth.

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What is the Success Rate of Dental Implants?

Success Rate of Dental Implants

  • Here at MALO SMILES, we enjoy extremely high success rates whether replacing one tooth or an entire set of teeth with dental implants.
  • In atypical cases, where dental implants “fail,” factors such as chronic illness (cancer and diabetes), negative lifestyle choices (alcoholism, tobacco use, and drug abuse) and poor oral hygiene resulting in gum disease are often the cause. Post-operative infection and ignoring the advice of your dental implant team with regards to dietary instructions in the weeks and months immediately after implant placement can also cause implants to not “osseointegrate” and require removal and eventual replacement.
  • At MALO SMILES, all of our staff members and highly qualified surgeons, dentists, and prosthodontists have received hands-on training from one of the most renowned implant dentists in the world: Dr. Paulo Malo. They also have decades’ worth of experience in the successful placement and restoration of dental implants in patients of all ages.

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Can anyone get Dental Implants?

  • Most people who have lost one or more teeth are candidates for dental implants. Whether you are in your late teens or late nineties, have lost one tooth or all of your natural teeth, dental implants can help provide you with a long lasting solution.
  • Here at MALO SMILES, we make use of cutting-edge technology such as 3D imaging and advanced computer design programs to provide our patients with beautiful new smiles!

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What is involved in Getting Dental Implants?

In most cases, having teeth replaced usually involves an initial consultation with one or more of our experienced dental implant professionals. Then, there is the procedure itself, which is typically performed during the second or subsequent appointment. Typically there are one or more post-operative check-ups as needed. And, of course, the placement of the tooth or teeth being restored.

Initial Consultation

During your screening consultation with us at MALO SMILES, you can expect the following:

  • We will perform a clinical assessment of your oral health and needs.
  • We will often take a 3-D CT scan of your jaws to help plan implant placement in a manner that is safe and minimally invasive.
  • We will also review your past medical history so we may identify any potential contraindications.
  • Potential treatment options will be discussed.
  • In some cases, an additional visit may be necessary to review any findings and discuss treatment options in more detail.

Dental Implant Treatment

The treatment itself is typically performed in a single appointment. You will be anesthetized so you will not experience any pain or discomfort. You may also have the option to receive Intravenous (I.V.) sedation or general anesthesia if you are particularly nervous about treatment. It some cases this may be recommended based of your medical history.

Once we have finished placing your implants and the overlying restoration (a temporary until your implants have fully osseointegrated), you will be free to return home for a well-deserved rest. Most patients return to work a day or two after having teeth replaced and report minimal post-operative discomfort. Any minor discomfort is often easily managing with over-the-counter analgesic medication, though you will be given a prescription for something stronger in case it’s needed.

Post-Operative Care

You will be required to return to MALO SMILES approximately 10 to 14 days after your surgery so that we can make sure you are healing well. If you are healthy and take care to follow the instructions for post-operative care and maintenance, it should take approximately three to four months before you will be able to receive your final (non-temporary) replacement teeth. These teeth will be constructed of more durable materials for long term strength and longevity.

Want to know exactly what to expect from dental implant treatment? Want to learn the nitty gritty details behind the procedure? Click on the link to read more about the dental implant procedure.

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Does the dental implant procedure hurt?

Does Getting Dental Implants Hurt

  • In most cases, patients experience no pain when having dental implants placed. There may be some associated discomfort and tenderness in the days following the procedure, but this is not typical and can usually be managed with the medications your dental implant surgeon will prescribe you or over the counter analgesics.
  • The nature of dental implant surgery has changed dramatically over the past 20 years. The use of sophisticated diagnostic and visualization tools and technology enable our skilled surgeons to achieve outcomes using minimally invasive techniques. By avoiding unnecessary or multiple procedures (such as bone grafting), post-operative healing is not only far quicker, but also far more comfortable for the patient.

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Do You Offer Anything for Nervous Patients?

  • All of our staff is entirely accustomed to dealing with particularly scared and nervous patients, so you can expect our full compassion and support during your experience with us here at MALO SMILES.
  • If you suffer from dental anxiety or even dental phobia, you may have the choice to receive Intravenous (I.V.) Sedation just prior to and during your treatment. The sedative medications used are generally very safe and make patients feel relaxed, comfortable and detached from what’s happening so that all traditional fear triggers are removed.
  • We also welcome patients to bring their family members or friends for additional support!

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How Long Will I Have to Take Off Work?

  • How much time off required after receiving dental implants depends on the complexity of the procedure performed and upon the condition of the patient. For example, most patients who have only had one tooth replaced will happily go back to work the very next day, while those who have had all of their teeth replaced tend to take a few more days relaxing at home before returning to the daily grindstone.
  • When replacing a full set of teeth, we generally recommend that you take some time off (at least one or two days) following your procedure. This will give you time to grow accustomed to the feeling of your new teeth and for the worst of the discomfort to pass should you have any.
  • Also, any prescription narcotic medication you may need to take can make you feel sleepy, so use the official excuse to spend a few days resting up and giving your body a chance to recover!

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How Do I Look After My New Teeth?

  • Here’s the great news: fixed (non-removable) dental implant restorations are cleaned very similar to your natural teeth: with regular brushing and flossing. If you have had an implant-supported bridge placed, we recommend that you invest in a Waterpik®, which is a fantastic and effective cleaning device.
  • We also urge patients to return to MALO SMILES (or your own dentist) for periodic check-ups and cleanings, so we can make sure your new teeth look beautiful and your dental implants are healthy and functioning optimally.

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What Factors Count Against Implant Candidacy?

  • Dental implants have been successfully placed in adults of all ages, so age is typically not a consideration.
  • What is an important consideration, especially in older patients, is their general health and their ability to undergo surgery, possibly with I.V. sedation or in some cases, general anesthesia. It is for this very reason that we insist on taking down and reviewing the detailed medical history of every patient prior to proceeding with dental implant treatment.
  • There are a handful of medical conditions, such as poorly controlled diabetes, osteoporosis and bleeding disorders, which can render this kind of surgery too risky to consider as an option. We may also require your treating physician to provide us with a “surgical clearance” form so that we can avoid any and all health-related risks. Patient safety is our absolute priority.

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Don’t See Your Question Here?

Contact us today to speak to one of our friendly representatives. We can even schedule a screening consultation for you to speak with a dental implant surgeon directly.