Implant FAQs Houston
What are dental implants?

Dental implants are artificial teeth. Dental implants are titanium cylindrical posts, very similar to the root of the natural teeth.

How are dental implants placed?

Dental implants are surgically placed inside your jawbone by your dental surgeon/Oral Implantologist in the place of missing tooth.

Is dental implant surgery painful?

Surprisingly, no, an Oral Implantologist is trained to start and complete the procedure while you are deeply sedated. Not only it is completely painless, most patients don’t even remember the surgery.

How long does dental surgery take?

The length of surgery varies from less than an hour for a single dental implant to three or more hours for a mouthful of implants. However, since you will be in a deep sedative state, it will be over in a heartbeat.

How long time to recover from dental implant surgery?

Most patients can return to light duty the next day and completely resume their daily activities within a few days.

What are restrictions after dental implant surgery?

Day of Surgery: Rest, Ice, Compress, and Elevate “RICE”. Your Oral Implantologist/surgeon usually provides you with a special head wrap with pockets for ice-gel pack. Simply keep the ice pack over the surgical area and keep your head elevated while resting. Most patients return to work the next day.

What are dental implants made from?

Dental implants are usually made from titanium in the form of cylindrical posts, very similar to the root of the natural teeth. Over the years they evolve from simple cylinder to treaded form in order to increase the surface area and stability.

When is dental implant exposed?

Once dental implant fully Integrate with your jawbone, your implant dentist will expose it from under your gum and places a healing abutment over it.

What are healing abutments?

Healing abutments are transitional abutments attached to the body of dental implants for a period of usually 2 weeks after surgical exposure of dental implant from under the gum.

What are healing abutment used for?

Healing abutments help ideal healing of gum around the dental implant to accommodate a healthy surrounding for the future abutment and implant crown.

What are dental implant abutments?

They are cylindrical and usually tapered posts that is inserted and secured to the body of dental implant and is designed to hold a porcelain crown. Dental Implant abutments are the second part of dental implant assembly.

What are implant crowns made of?

Dental implant crowns are typically porcelain custom fabricated crowns that are either cemented or screwed over the dental implant abutment. They are the closest you can get to healthy, natural teeth. They will allow you to confidently eat, smile, laugh, talk, play and enjoy all of your regular activities of everyday life without thinking about your teeth.

  1. Dental Implant – A cylindrical post, usually made of titanium, which acts as artificial human tooth root.
  2. Dental Implant Abutment – It is a strong titanium or ceramic connector, secured on top of the dental implant, to act as prepared crown portion of dental implant assembly.
  3. Dental Implant Crown – A porcelain custom made dental crown fabricated to mimic natural human tooth.

Dental Implants can replace a single tooth or be used as an implant supported fixed bridge or denture containing multiple teeth.

Who is a candidate for dental implants?

Dental implant are the right choice for anyone one or more missing or failing natural tooth or even all of their teeth due to injury, defects, disease or decay. While dental implants are not generally recommended for pre-puberty adolescents, they can be used as anchor for orthodontic treatment of children as young as 10+ years old.

How do dental implants work?

Dental implant supported tooth, looks, feels and function just like natural teeth. You brush, floss and visit your dentist for regular check-ups and cleanings, same as you would to care for a natural tooth.

What types of dental implants are available?

Majority of dental implants are root form, meaning they are small cylindrical posts that look similar to root of natural front teeth. This category of dental implants are called Endosteal implants. They are surgically inserted in the jawbone in the place of missing tooth. They are shaped like small screws, cylinders or plates.

Subperiosteal implants are inserted between the gum and the jawbone. This type of implants are ideal for patients with severe bone loss who are not a candidate for bone augmentation and guided bone regeneration.

Dental implants also come in many different sizes, diameters, and heights to suit each patient’s individual needs.

What are the benefits of dental implants over other treatments?

Dental implants have quickly become the best and most natural choice for replacing a missing tooth. They are now considered standard of care compared to other more traditional option such as dental bridge or removable teeth. Dental implant looks, feels, fits and functions like a natural tooth. Other options will not stimulate the jawbone like natural teeth as we chew. Lack of stimulation can lead to bone deterioration, and ultimately interfere with eating, smiling, speaking and other activities of everyday life.

How long do dental implants last?

Dental implants are designed to last you a lifetime. Tooth-supported dental bridges only last an average of six years. While some dental bridges with proper could potentially last more than 10 years, at some point they may need to be replaced in your lifetime. Dental implants on the other hand, may need periodic adjustments, but they do last a lifetime when properly placed and cared for.

How much do dental implants cost?

While cost varies and depends on several factors such as level of experience of the oral implantologist, quality of implant and crown, as well as other common factors such as demand and supply of each geographic location.  On average a single dental implant cost is similar to a 3 unit fixed dental bridge.

Because your teeth affect everything from your smile and confidence, to your ability to eat, speak and participate in the activities you enjoy, and because there is no better option to restore missing teeth, dental implants are an investment well worth considering.

Are dental implants safe?

Dental implants have been in use for more than 50 years. They are FDA approved and are completely bio compatible and safe. No allergic reaction to titanium dental implants have ever been reported.

How do I care for my dental implants?

Caring for teeth restored with dental implants is just like caring for your natural teeth: brush, floss and maintain regular dental cleanings and check-ups, as recommended by American Dental Associations (ADA). While Dental implants are immune to tooth decay, they need to be kept clean and periodically checked to avoid accumulation of plaque and bacteria around them.

Why do people choose dental implants?

Because Dental implants are better, most durable, and most natural-looking and feeling replacement option available for missing teeth. They do not slip or click when talking, laughing or eating. Dental implants are also considered the most healthy option since they help maintain the jawbone and facial profile.

Can any dentist provide my dental implant?

Dental implants are sophisticated dental devices that must be placed carefully to avoid complications or implant failure. For the best outcome potential, it is vitally important that you choose a dental implant expert that has the proper education, training, experience, and competence in implant dentistry.

How long does it take to restore one or more teeth using dental implants?

While every case is different, most dental implants will fully integrate with the jawbone within 2 to 4 months. Once the integration process is complete, dental implant can receive a crown and function normally as other natural teeth.

What are the risks of dental implants?

Dental implants have been in use since the early 1960s. They are proven safe and effective. Dental implant surgery is one of the most predictable procedures in dentistry.

Complications from dental implant surgery are rare but, as with any medical procedure, there are risks, and these risks may be higher for patients who smoke or have other medical conditions such as uncontrolled adult diabetes or take certain medications. Other risks include: infection, which generally responds to medication; damage to other teeth, tooth roots, sinus problems; fractures; nerve damage that can result in pain, numbness or tingling; inability to complete the procedure due to inadequate jawbone; and implant failure.

Are dental implants right for me?

To date, dental implants are the most advanced and complete replacement option to replace missing natural teeth. They preserve the health of your neighboring natural teeth and prevent natural loss of bone that always follows loss of root of natural teeth. Dental implants are the only option for patient who have lost most of their teeth and can’t chew properly with removable teeth.

To find out if you are a candidate for dental implants or to learn more about them, please give us a call.

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The staff at Unicare Center for Cosmetic & Implant Dentistry would love to meet you and your family and provide you with the dental care you need and deserve!