What is a Dental Implant?

An implant is a small titanium anchor that is placed into the jaw bone to take the place of a missing tooth root. After healing or osteo-integration the replacement tooth or crown is then secures to the top of the implant. This new tooth feels and performs like your natural tooth. People in Houston having Dental Implants are raving about Dr. Frishkey's work.

Dental Implant Presentation

To provide you with a better understanding of dental implants, we have provided the following multimedia presentation. Many common questions pertaining to dental implants are discussed.
Dental Implants, Houston
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Dental implants can be used in many different situations. They can be used to replace a single tooth or they can be used as bridgework to replace multiple missing teeth. They can even be used as anchor points to secure a full or partial denture.

The Implant Process

The implant process involves several steps that can take place over three to nine months. The most common application of a dental implant is to replace a single missing tooth. The initial surgery is to place the titanium anchor into the jaw bone. Over the next three to six months, bone will attach to the surface of the implant anchoring it into position. The second phase of implant surgery is a minor procedure that creates an opening through which the abutment or attachment will be placed so that the prosthesis can be made. In some cases, a single stage implant can be utilized. This eliminated the need for the second minor surgical procedure. The final step of the implant process is the prosthetic attachment. During this phase, your restorative dentist will fabricate the prosthesis which will appear like a natural tooth or a custom attachment for your denture.

Who is a Candidate for a Dental Implant?

Most people can undergo the surgery for dental implants. If you are healthy enough to undergo a tooth extraction, you are probably healthy enough to undergo implant placement. Most of the time implants are used to replace missing teeth that are lost as a result of injury, disease, or decay. General good health and adequate bone in the jaw are the key requirements.

FAQ concerning Dental Implants:

1. Does it hurt to have dental implants?

Usually most patients say that having a dental implant placed is less painful than having the tooth removed. Of course, everyone is different, but most patients do not have significant problems or pain after uncomplicated implant placement. If bone grafting or tissue grafting is required, the procedure can be more uncomfortable. As with any surgery, swelling or bruising may develop.

2. Can my body reject the dental implant?

Occasionally, dental implant fail because of infection or overloading it with pressure. It is extremely rare for a titanium or coated implant to be truly rejected as an allergic reaction. If an implant fails, usually they can be replaced with another implant.

3. What is the success rate of dental implants?

The overall success rate is approximately 90% with the back part of the upper and lower jaw being slightly less successful and the front part of the lower jaw having a higher success rate. Also, grafting of any type may affect the overall success rate. Of course, there are other factors such as overall medical health and smoking that affect the success rate of dental implants, as well as the need for bone or soft tissue grafting.

4. Can I wear my denture or a false tooth while the implant is healing?

In most cases, a temporary denture also known as a "flipper" or other temporary bridge can be utilized during the healing phase. Because of situations that might require grafting bone or soft tissue, this is not always the case; however, the interim denture can be worn within two weeks after placement of implant and grafting if the prosthesis is modified to fit without creating pressure on the surgical site.

5. What is the cost of dental implants?

The cost of dental implants can vary greatly. The most simple type of placement is the single tooth implant in a edentulous (no tooth present) space. The surgical portion of the procedure combined with the restorative procedure is in most cases similar to or slightly more that the placement of a three-unit porcelain bridge. If implants are utilized to help anchor a denture, the cost can vary form four to eight times the cost of the denture alone. If grafting is required, the cost of the surgery may be increased based on the material utilized. Surgical fees can be discussed after the initial treatment plan is developed. Fees can vary based on type of grafting needed and complexity of the treatment plan.

6. Are there web sites that I can go to, to learn more about implants?

Yes, please follow these links:

  1. Zimmer Dental
  2. Straumann
  3. Noble biocare
  4. 3i
  5. Intra-Lock

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