If you’re considering dental implants, you might have some inquiries, and we aim to assist you in comprehending the procedure thoroughly. Provided below are responses to some of the questions that you may have.
What are dental implants made of?
Dental implants are typically made of biocompatible materials that are safe for use in the human body. The most common materials used to make dental implants are:
- Titanium: Titanium is the most commonly used material for dental implants. It is strong, lightweight, and biocompatible, meaning it is not harmful to living tissue and can fuse with the surrounding bone. Titanium implants are often coated with a special surface treatment to help them integrate more quickly and securely with the jawbone.
- Zirconia: Zirconia is a type of ceramic material that is also biocompatible and can be used to make dental implants. Zirconia implants are white in color and are often preferred for their aesthetic appeal, as they can blend in more naturally with the surrounding teeth.
- Stainless Steel: Stainless steel implants are sometimes used for temporary or short-term dental implants. They are strong and durable but may not integrate as well with the jawbone as titanium or zirconia implants.
- Cobalt-Chrome: Cobalt-chrome alloys are strong and biocompatible materials that are sometimes used for dental implants, particularly for patients who have metal allergies or sensitivities.
- Porcelain: Porcelain is a popular choice for dental implant teeth because it closely mimics the appearance and texture of natural teeth. Porcelain is durable and stain-resistant, making it a good choice for dental restorations that need to withstand normal wear and tear.
- Acrylic resin: Acrylic resin is a type of plastic material that is often used to create the gums for dental implant restorations. Acrylic resin can be tinted to match the natural color of the patient’s gums, creating a seamless and natural-looking appearance.
- Composite resin: Composite resin is another type of plastic material that can be used to create dental implant teeth and gums. Composite resin is durable and can be colored and shaped to match the patient’s natural teeth and gums.
The choice of implant material will depend on several factors, including the patient’s individual needs, the location of the missing tooth or teeth, and the dentist’s preference and expertise. Your dentist will work with you to select the best materials for your dental implant restoration to ensure a natural-looking and long-lasting result.
As mentioned above, medical-grade titanium is the most common material used to make dental implants. It is also utilized in the production of replacement parts for hips, knees, and shoulders. The implants integrate with the bone through a process called osseointegration, where the bone grows around the implant and forms a bond with it.
During this process, the implant post (which is made of titanium) is surgically placed into the jawbone, where it is left to heal and integrate with the surrounding bone tissue. Over time, new bone cells grow around and attach to the implant surface, locking it securely in place.
The process of osseointegration can take several months, during which the patient must follow strict aftercare instructions to ensure the best possible outcome. Once osseointegration is complete, the implant is fully integrated into the jawbone, and the patient can receive their replacement teeth, either a crown, bridge or denture, securely attached to the implant post.
Once this integration occurs, the implant acts as a natural tooth, complete with a natural root.
How long does the whole process take?
At Dental & Implant Centers Of Colorado, it is possible to receive full mouth dental implants within 24 hours, and the entire process can be finished within a few days. For patients who travel to us, we suggest setting aside a week, which includes the initial consultation and smile design on Monday (as we create a custom smile design for each patient), implant surgery on Tuesday, permanent teeth installation on Wednesday (fabricated with high precision down to the nanometer after the implants are placed on Tuesday night), and a follow-up on Friday.
That’s all! Following the installation of permanent teeth on Wednesday morning, you can consume soft foods, such as pizza, pasta, hamburgers, that can be cut using a plastic spoon.
You can read more about the process here.
How painful is it to get dental implants?
The degree of pain experienced during dental implant placement varies among patients. Generally, most patients report feeling more discomfort than actual pain. The mouth is numbed during the procedure, which helps to minimize pain.
The insertion of metal posts into the jawbone is carried out under full anesthesia, although you may experience some swelling or discomfort in the days following the surgery. Tissue swelling and discomfort can persist for up to ten days. The majority of patients can manage any discomfort with over-the-counter medications such as Tylenol and Ibuprofen. In some cases, stronger medications can be prescribed. Interestingly, some patients may experience less pain from the implant surgery than they did from their damaged or infected teeth.
How much do implants cost?
The cost of dental implants varies significantly based on the individual patient’s requirements. Some patients may only need a few teeth replaced, while others may require a full set of implants. Our advanced technology allows us to provide permanent teeth without the need for temporary dentures within 24 hours after surgery, which eliminates a significant portion of the cost associated with traditional “teeth-in-a-day” procedures.
Despite utilizing innovative technology and procedures, we strive to offer competitive pricing. If you would like to learn more about the cost of dental implants for your specific needs, please refer to the contact section at the end of this article and give us a call. We also have a detailed guide about the cost of dental implants and why they can be expensive.
How can I pay for dental implants?
Before exploring payment options for dental implants, it is advisable to check with your insurance provider. While dental implants are typically considered a cosmetic procedure and may not be covered, some insurance plans offer partial coverage.
In addition to insurance, financing options are available through dental offices, personal loans, credit card payments, or using your Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA). For further information on dental implant cost and payment options, refer to our comprehensive “Dental Implant Cost and Information Guide.”
How should I take care of my implants?
To maintain the health and longevity of your dental implants, it is essential to care for them just as you would your natural teeth. Adequate implant maintenance involves:
- Brushing twice daily, at a minimum;
- Flossing regularly;
- Avoiding smoking, as smoking with dental implants can lead to complications and implant failure;
- Taking measures to protect your teeth from trauma and injury;
- Refraining from using your teeth to open bottles, packages, or to crack nuts.
How long will my implants last?
Dental implants can provide the appearance and functionality of natural teeth, without the risk of dental decay. With proper maintenance, including regular cleaning and check-ups, dental implants can last for more than 25 years.
The longevity of dental implants can vary depending on several factors, such as the patient’s oral health, the quality of the implant materials, and the skill of the dentist performing the procedure. In some cases, implants can last much longer, especially if the patient takes good care of their oral health and follows all post-operative instructions.
As mentioned above, to ensure the longest possible lifespan for dental implants it’s important to maintain good oral hygiene habits, such as brushing and flossing regularly and visiting the dentist for regular checkups and cleanings. Patients should also avoid smoking, which can increase the risk of implant failure, and follow any additional instructions provided by their dentist, such as avoiding hard or sticky foods during the healing process.
Are dental implants 100% safe?
Like any surgical procedure, there are potential risks associated with dental implants. However, the success rate of dental implants typically ranges from 90-95%. Possible risks include infection, nerve damage, and sinus issues. Additionally, adjacent teeth or blood vessels could be impacted during the procedure. If complications do occur, they are usually minor and treatable.
To minimize the risk of complications and ensure the safety of dental implant treatment, it’s important to choose an experienced and qualified dentist or oral surgeon who uses high-quality materials and follows strict sterilization protocols. It’s also important to follow all post-operative instructions and maintain good oral hygiene habits, such as brushing and flossing regularly and visiting the dentist for regular checkups and cleanings.
To initiate the process of receiving dental implants, reach out to Dental & Implant Centers Of Colorado to schedule a free consultation. During the consultation, you can explore how dental implants could enhance the appearance of your smile.