Peabody Dental Care | Santa Cruz, CA | Dentist Santa Cruz
Dental Implant Benefits
Dental Implants Benefits
Dental implants replace missing teeth roots and can be restored with crowns, bridges, or dentures. Implants can provide patients with improved confidence and enhanced self-esteem. The procedure not only offers patients an improved smile, but it also enhances overall health and function.
At Peabody Dental Care, we offer a wide range of dental implant treatments. Individuals who are missing one tooth, several teeth, or even an entire dental arch can benefit from this revolutionary treatment.
Unlike traditional teeth replacement options, dental implants work to preserve existing jawbone tissue and reduce the risk of deterioration. Missing teeth prevent the jawbone from receiving the nutrients and stimulation it needs to thrive and be healthy. Over time, the bone wastes away since it’s no longer needed. As the bone atrophies, patients can notice the impact on their natural facial features.
Missing teeth over a prolonged amount of time can make it difficult to even wear dentures since the bone is basically nonexistent. At this time, patients may look extremely aged and worn since the lower face can develop wrinkles and the mouth looks drawn in. Implants can prevent this to provide a more youthful, natural look.
Dental implants are a permanent solution that you treat just like your natural teeth. The implant replaces your tooth root to provide a strong foundation for a permanent restoration. Whether you have one missing tooth or if all or most of your teeth are missing, dental implants can be an excellent option for you.
Single Tooth Implants
What are single tooth implants?
Single tooth implants are suitable for patients who are only missing one tooth to improve their appearance and enhance their functionality. In contrast to other treatment options, surrounding teeth aren’t affected, and Dr. Peabody only focuses on the single tooth.
During a consultation, Dr. Peabody assesses your missing tooth and the health of your mouth. Once you are cleared for the procedure, the dentist will make small incisions in the gums and place the implant, which will replace your tooth root. Over the next three to six months, your gums will heal, and the implant will fuse with the bone during a process called osseointegration. Once healed, the implant will be an anchor for your dental crown.
Dental Implant Recovery
After dental implants, you can expect some pain and discomfort. Patients often experience slight swelling and minor bleeding. To help mitigate these side effects, your dentist might provide antibiotics or pain medication, which you should take as prescribed. The effects of the surgery should subside within a few days. If symptoms persist for longer, you should contact your dentist as soon as possible.
Dr. Peabody typically recommends that you eat soft foods following the procedure to minimize any pain. Your teeth might also be sensitive to heat and cold. You should always feel free to reach out to our office if you feel any unexpected symptoms afterward.
Dental implants aren’t right for every patient, so it’s important that you know all available alternatives. Bridges and dentures are options for patients who don’t qualify for dental implants. Dr. Peabody will go over each treatment option to find the optimal solution for you.
Multiple Tooth Implants
What are multiple tooth implants?
Multiple tooth implants are for patients who are missing more than one tooth. Those who are missing a few teeth in a row can opt for an implant-supported bridge. Individuals who are missing an entire arch can choose a fixed or removable denture. There are several different options that can be customized according to your specific needs.
What is All-On-4® treatment?
Patients who are missing all or most of their teeth on the upper or bottom arch should consider All-On-4® dental implants. With this procedure, Dr. Peabody uses only four implants to support a fixed, full-arch restoration.
This option is often recommended for individuals with significant bone loss. Strategic implant placement allows Dr. Peabody to maximize your existing jawbone. Therefore, patients who are not candidates for standard implant treatment can be eligible for All-on-4.
How is All-on-4® performed?
During an initial consultation, the dentist will examine your jawbone density and oral health to determine if you are eligible for All-on-4® implants. The examination consists of a CT scan of your jaw, which renders 3D images of your entire mouth. These radiographs help Dr. Peabody plan your treatment.
2. Dental Implant Procedure
Dr. Peabody offers dental sedation before implants are placed to reduce anxiety and any discomfort. If you have any remaining damaged teeth, they are extracted before the implants are placed in the front and back of the jaw. Some patients might receive a temporary bridge until the permanent one is customized.
3. Post-surgical Care
When enough healing has taken place, your dentist removes the temporary bridge and secures the final restoration into place. The result is a beautiful, functional, healthy smile and a boost in confidence.
Dental Implants FAQs
What is a Dental Implant?
A dental implant is a common treatment used to replace one or more missing teeth. The implant is a small, durable post that’s placed in the gums to replace a tooth root. Once it’s healed, a connector is attached to hold a crown or other permanent restoration in place. With a dental implant, your smile will look and function naturally.
Am I a candidate for dental implant treatment?
During a consultation, Dr. Peabody will assess your entire mouth and oral health and use x-rays and digital images to determine if you are a candidate for implants. The best candidates should:
- Have one or more missing teeth
- Have adequate bone density to support the implant
- Be in good oral health
- Suffer from no health conditions that affect the ability to heal
- Be non-smokers
Can a dental implant work with existing dentures?
While every patient is different, sometimes we can alter an existing denture to affix on top of implants. We can discuss this during the consultation.
Why choose implant-supported restorations over traditional ones?
Many patients want to know how a traditional crown and bridge differs from an implant-supported crown and bridge, and these are some of the key differences.
- Dental implants preserve more of the jawbone.
- Surrounding teeth don’t have to be prepped or treated to receive a crown.
- Implants are longer-lasting than bridges and crowns. In fact, implants can last a lifetime while crowns and bridges last around 10 years with proper care.
- Implants are more expensive than traditional methods since they provide a more natural look and are more labor intensive.
Should my tooth be extracted to be replaced by a dental implant?
In the following situations, you might need a tooth extraction:
- If your natural tooth is damaged beyond repair or failing
- If you have extreme gum disease that has deteriorated your jawbone
- If you have had a root canal that has weakened your tooth
How long do dental implants last?
With proper care and regular visits to your dentist, dental implants should last a lifetime. The attached restoration is designed to last about 10 to 20 years and may eventually need replacement due to wear and tear.
How long will it take to complete treatment?
Since there are multiple steps involved in implant surgery, patients should expect the complete treatment to last anywhere from six months to a year or longer. The number of missing teeth you have, how long it takes your mouth to heal between steps and the type of implants you receive all play a role. During a consultation, Dr. Peabody can give you an estimate of how long you should expect the process to last.
How will my teeth look and feel?
Your teeth will look and feel natural. Dr. Peabody takes the time to ensure that your restoration matches the appearance of your surrounding teeth. The implant also functions like your normal tooth where you can do everything like eating, biting, and speaking with ease.
Is a dental implant procedure painful?
During the procedure, Dr. Peabody uses local anesthesia to minimize any pain or discomfort. This allows patients to tolerate the surgical procedure well. After treatment, it is common to experience pain, discomfort, and tenderness. Dr. Peabody can prescribe pain medications and antibiotics to help with the symptoms.
Is my age a factor for dental implant treatment?
While a patient is in adequate general and oral health, there is really no age limit. Since older people older than 65 have a higher incidence of missing teeth, they are typically good candidates for implants.
Is there special care required?
Dental implants are low maintenance and should be treated just like your natural teeth. You should follow a proper oral hygiene regimen, including brushing and flossing daily. You also need to visit your dentist regularly for check-ups.
What is the cost of dental implant treatment?
Dental implants can vary in cost from about $1,500 to $2,500 per implant. The total treatment can depend on several factors, such as how many missing teeth you have, if a bone graft is required, and the type of implants you receive. It is important that you speak to your dentist during the consultation to discuss price and possible payment options.
Why are dental implants the best option?
Dental implants are more secure than other options since they fuse directly to your jawbone. Additionally, implants provide an extremely natural look and feel just like your own teeth to allow you to speak, eat, and bite comfortably.
Contact Us to Learn More
If you are interested in exploring teeth replacement options, schedule a visit with our Santa Cruz, CA, dental team. We can help you determine a solution that fits your needs and budget.