• You don’t have to go to an expensive Periodontist for dental implants!
• The dental implant procedure is simple and has a very high success rate
• Dental insurance can make the entire procedure much more affordable
• Dr. Chung will explain all of your options in detail during the initial exam
• If you are having problems with your current dental implants, we can help fix or replace them
Implants are a solution for people whose teeth are cracked, chipped, crowded, discolored or missing. Some patients prefer dental implants to dentures because they are more or less permanent and do not slip or come loose.
A traditional dental implant takes some time for both the dentist and the patient. The dentist takes X-rays of the patient’s mouth before beginning the implant process. This is not only to get a good look at the tooth but to make sure that the patient’s jaw has enough bone to support the implant. If a patient’s jaw doesn’t have enough bone and they insist on having an implant, they can be given a bone graft from another area of the body. This is often the pelvic bone, and it will take some time for the graft to be ready for the implant.
In the first phase of the dental implant, the dentist opens up the patient’s gum and inserts a post. This post is usually made of titanium, a shiny, strong, silvery metal that resists corrosion and is biocompatible. The post resembles a screw and sometimes it is honeycombed to make it easier for the bone tissue to fuse with it. After the post is inserted, the dentist covers it with gum tissue and may install a temporary crown.
Zirconium is sometimes used instead of titanium as a post. Like titanium, zirconium is biocompatible, and some dentists claim it is even stronger than titanium.
The fusing of the bone and the post can take as long as six months. Until then, the patient needs to be especially diligent when it comes to their oral hygiene and will need to visit their dentist regularly to make sure that the process is continuing the way it should.
When the dentist believes that the bone and the post have fused, they’ll take another X-ray of the patient’s jaw. If it has fused, it is time for the second phase of the dental implant. The doctor has a permanent crown made in a dental laboratory. This crown can be made of porcelain or another type of ceramic, porcelain over metal or metal. Some people even choose gold for their crown, though gold is expensive. Porcelain crowns are often chosen for the front of the mouth and can be made to look exceptionally life-like.
When the crown is ready to be placed, the dentist opens the gum and places an abutment, or anchor on top of the post. The crown is then placed on the abutment after the gum heals. The dentist adjusts the crown until it is perfectly placed.
After their mouth has healed, the patient performs regular dental hygiene, including brushing, flossing and using mouth wash.
A dental implant can cost as much as $3000 and as it is considered a cosmetic procedure, most health insurers don’t cover it.
Advances in Dental Implants
Some patients don’t want to wait the months it can take for the posts and their jaw bone to fuse together. These people ask their dentist for something called front loading, where the post, abutment and crown are placed at the same time.
A patient can also have more than one dental implant at a time. The posts are placed on bridges and are inserted into the jaw together.
Schedule your consultation today to see if dental implants can be a good option for you!