Top Questions Patients Ask About Dental Implants

Dental health care has come a long way with the development of modern dental implant therapy. And although today’s dental implants are extremely popular, there are still a lot of questions and misconceptions about the treatment process. Here are some of the most common dental implant FAQs we hear in our office. 

What is a dental implant?

Titanium dental implants are basically artificial tooth roots. They’re set inside of the bone, next to natural teeth. Once integrated, we attach a crown, bridge, or full-arch prosthesis on top of the implant to fill in your “smile.” You cannot remove dental implants; they are permanent. 

Are dental implants expensive? 

When you compare dental implants to a partial denture or fixed bridge, they do cost more. However, they last longer and thus offer the best return on investment. 

How much do dental implants cost?

Since we don’t need to place an implant in the space of every missing tooth, we can use fewer implants overall. This will significantly lower your implant cost. In order to provide you with a firm price, we will need to evaluate your unique oral anatomy beforehand. 

Who can get dental implants? 

The ideal candidate for dental implants is an adult with healthy gum tissues and dense bone. They may already have missing teeth or require extractions.

Are dental implants safe?

Absolutely. Dental implant surgery and restorations are extremely safe, hypoallergenic, and biocompatible. They are the only tooth replacement that is non-invasive to your natural teeth.

How many implants will I need?

Since dental implants can pair together to anchor multi-tooth restorations (like a bridge or “All-on-4“), the number of implants you need will depend on how many missing teeth you have. Specific missing teeth will require an individual implant at each location. At the same time, a full-arch prosthesis may only require four dental implants in total. 

Is dental implant surgery painful?

dental implant procedure can usually be performed with numbing medication since it is minimally invasive. If you’re replacing missing teeth throughout your entire mouth, you might prefer sedation to help you relax during a longer procedure. 

Are implants really better than dentures or bridges?

Yes. Dental implant treatment prevents us from altering the structure of adjacent natural teeth. Additionally, they are not removable the same way a denture or partial is. These tooth replacement treatments mimic the look and feel of a natural tooth. 

Can I eat whatever I want if I have dental implants? 

Yes. Each artificial tooth is, in fact, stronger than anatomical teeth. Once integrated, dental implants allow you to eat anything from steak to corn on the cob. No food is off-limits. And compared to dentures, you’ll have significantly more biting and chewing capabilities whenever you eat. 

How long do dental implants last?

As long as you care for them properly and don’t develop peri-implantitis (the implant form of gum disease, which is preventable), your dental implants can potentially last the rest of your life. Their extremely high success rate makes them far superior to other popular tooth replacements. 

Do dental implants work like natural teeth?

Yes. The structure of dental implants sets inside of your bone, just like an anatomical tooth. We affix a crown or bridge on top of the implants, filling in the functional portion that you see when you smile. These restorations are modeled after the same shape and size of teeth, making them unlike any other type of tooth replacement.

Is it hard to take care of dental implants?

Not at all. These dental restorations are extremely easy to maintain. Simply brush and floss around the dental implant structure and plan regular checkups with our Scottsdale dentist every six months. Plan to treat each dental implant as if it were an original part of your smile. 

What are dental implants made out of?

The majority of dental implants are made out of titanium, which is a special type of hypoallergenic metal. Titanium is safe for your oral tissues as it stimulates bone growth and integration with the implant surface after it’s installed. There are also some dental implant designs that are made out of porcelain. 

Can I get dental implants if I already wear dentures?

Yes. It does not matter how many teeth we need to replace or if you already have full or partial denture prosthetics that you wear. As long as there is adequate bone to support the dental implants, you are a potential candidate for this treatment. Some denture wearers will even have their current prosthesis retrofitted into a snap-on overdenture (implant stabilized dentures.)

How many types of dental implants are there? 

Traditional dental implants are the most common type of dental implant design. These are the restorations that are about the same width and length as an anatomical tooth root. There are also “mini” dental implants, which are about half that size. Mini implants can be installed in spaces where there is thin bone or inadequate spacing for a full implant. And then there are zygomatic dental implants, which are used when there is significant bone loss or bone grafts are not an option. 

What is involved in dental implant placement? 

The dental implant process could involve adjunctive procedures, such as tooth extraction, bone graft, or sinus lift. But the typical implant procedure is quite straightforward; our Scottsdale implant dentistry team can usually place it using only a small amount of numbing medication. If you’re getting multiple implants, sedation may be a great option as well. Our implant surgery clinic will provide you with a customized care plan so that you understand the overall step-by-step process (including how much implants cost in your situation.)

Implant Dentistry in Scottsdale

If you have missing teeth because of tooth decay, gum disease, or past oral trauma, Scottsdale Dental Solutions can help make your smile whole again. This straightforward surgical procedure is simpler than you probably thought. Contact our Scottsdale implant surgery clinic today to reserve a no-obligation evaluation. 

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