If you are missing one or more teeth, dental implants can be an excellent solution to restore your smile. Today’s dental implants are the closest thing available to having natural teeth and they can last a lifetime with proper care. However, if you are considering dental implants, you may have some questions about the treatment process.
Here are some frequently asked questions about dental implants, answered by Dr. Skeens and the Encinitas Family Dentistry team:
What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are essentially artificial tooth roots that are placed into your bone. They support a replacement crown or bridge, which makes up the visible tooth/teeth on top of the implants. The implant is usually titanium and fuses with the jawbone. Once your implant is fully integrated, we can place the visible “tooth” on top of the implant, via an abutment. They provide a permanent solution for tooth loss and can also be used to support multi-tooth restorations or dentures.
How Long Does it Take to Get Dental Implants?
The length of time it takes to get dental implants varies depending on your specific situation. In general, the process can take anywhere from three to six months or longer because of the bone integration required.The first step is to plan a consultation with Dr. Skeens to determine if you are a good candidate for dental implants. If you are, we create a care plan and discuss the process with you.
Next comes the surgical implant placement. Afterward, you will need time to pass before the fixed restoration can be attached to your implant. During the healing period, the implant will fuse with the jawbone in a process called osseointegration. Once the implant is completely fused with the bone, you will have another appointment where your fixed restoration is attached to the implant.
Healing after Getting Dental Implants
After the implant is placed, it is essential to follow Dr. Skeens’ instructions to ensure proper healing and integration. In most cases, implant treatment is relatively comfortable. Minor soreness can be managed with over-the-counter pain medication. Make sure to follow your home-care directions carefully, avoiding tobacco products, vigorous exercise, etc. Dr. Skeens will schedule follow-up appointments to monitor your healing progress and ensure that the implant is integrating with your jawbone correctly.
Dental Implant FAQ
Q: How long do dental implants last?
A: With proper care, dental implants can last a lifetime.
Q: Is the dental implant procedure painful?
A: Local anesthesia is used during the procedure, so you should not feel any pain. You may experience minor discomfort or irritation after the procedure, but this can be managed with Motrin and/or a cold compress.
Q: What if I have a fear of the dentist?
A: At Encinitas Family Dentistry, we understand that some patients are anxious about dental procedures. We offer sedation options to help you relax and feel more comfortable during the implant procedure.
Q: How do I care for my dental implants?
A: During the first couple of weeks after surgery, it’s a good idea to stick to softer foods. After that, dental implants require the same care as natural teeth. Brush and floss regularly and visit Dr. Skeens for regular check-ups and cleanings.
Q: What’s the typical dental implant cost?
A: Dental implant costs can vary depending on several factors, including the number of implants needed, the type of implant restoration, and even where you live. While the initial cost of dental implants may be higher than other tooth replacement options, they can be a more cost-effective, lifelong solution.
Schedule an Implant Consultation
If you are missing teeth and considering dental implants near you, schedule a consultation with Dr. Skeens at Encinitas Family Dentistry. Dr. Skeens will evaluate your dental health and determine if you are a good candidate for dental implants. Our team is happy to answer any questions you may have about the procedure and help you determine if dental implants are the right choice for you. Contact us today to get started!
Welcome to the Encinitas dental office of Gregory Skeens, JR., DDS. We are your home for caring dental treatment that supports superior oral health and helps you achieve the beautiful smile you’ve always wanted. Our modern facility is equipped with cutting-edge technology and our team is here to make your visit enjoyable and relaxing.
We take a truly individualized approach to dentistry, which is why our practice is so popular. After every treatment, Encinitas dentist Dr. Skeens personally makes follow- up phone calls to patients to ensure that they are feeling well. Your comfort and well-being are of ultimate importance.