Dental Implants – San Antonio, TX
The Long-Term Solution for Tooth Loss
Dental implants are the only truly comprehensive tooth replacement available today. The implant takes the place of your missing tooth’s root, and a natural-looking prosthetic device is placed on top to restore the white crown. Together, the dental implants and the crown, bridge, or denture provide a sturdy tooth replacement that looks, feels, and functions like your natural teeth. Your dentist at Laith Family Dentistry restores dental implants in San Antonio.
How Dental Implants Work
Dental implants in San Antonio are one of the most highly recommended tooth replacement solutions because they have so much to offer patients. However, as with most great, life-changing treatments, it’s important to keep in mind that the process takes a little bit of time, and you won’t have a fully functional and natural-looking smile right away. While this is disheartening for many patients to hear, it’s important to stay positive and remember that the results are well worth the investment of your time. Below, we’ve outlined an average dental implant timeline to give you a better idea of what you can expect throughout the process.
Initial Dental Implant Consultation
One of the most important steps of the dental implant process is your initial consultation. Dr. Racha Kadamani and her team of professionals will examine your teeth, gums, and X-rays to see whether dental implants are right for you. We’ll be keeping an eye out for jawbone density, good oral health, and making sure that you don’t have any lingering oral issues that could cause complications during the healing process. We’ll also create your customized treatment timeline and walk you through it, including discussing details such as pricing.
Dental Implant Surgery
At Laith Family Dentistry, Dr. Kadamani believes in providing patients with the best results, which is why she partners with expert oral surgeons in the San Antonio area for the implant placement portion of the procedure. Once you’ve had your implant posts surgically placed, you’ll return to our office so we can finish the process.
Dental Implant Osseointegration & Abutment
After your surgery, you’ll go through an extensive healing and osseointegration period. This is when the dental implants will naturally fuse with your jawbone, providing your new restorations with a stable and strong foundation to be secured to. Once this part of the process is complete, you’ll return to our office so we can place your abutments, which are small, metal connector pieces that will allow your implants to hold restorations. This will also require a healing period of about four to six weeks.
Placement of Dental Implant Restorations
Finally, the moment you’ve been waiting for—the completion of your smile! Once your permanent restorations arrive from our dental laboratory to our office, we’ll call you back in for the last part of the procedure. Before securing your replacement teeth, we’ll make sure that they incorporate seamlessly into the rest of your smile and look great. We’ll also show you how to take care of them and what you can do to make sure that they last for 35 or more years!
Team-Based Dental Implant Treatment
While Dr. Kadamani is happy to restore your dental implants once they have been placed, she works with local implant specialists in the area to complete the surgical portion of your treatment. Not only can you expect higher quality care as a result of this collaborative approach, but we can maximize the success of your dental implant treatment and make sure it is handled as smoothly as possible. She’ll work directly with your implant dentist so that your future restoration fits comfortably for many years to come.
4 Step Dental Implant Process
Since getting dental implants does require surgery as well as the creation and placement of a dental restoration, it can take multiple visits to complete the process. Below, we’ve outlined how you can expect the procedure to go. Remember that the dental implant treatment will be personalized based on your needs, so your dental implant experience won’t necessarily be the same as someone else’s. We can go into more details with you in person during a visit.
Initial Dental Implant Consultation
The initial consultation involves several important steps. First of all, it allows us to evaluate the health of your gums and jawbone so that we can confirm that you’re a candidate for implant placement in the first place. In addition to taking an X-ray, we’ll also have to measure your jawbone density. You’ll need a certain amount of bone tissue in order to support a dental implant. We know this is likely to be your first experience with the implant process, so we’ll be sure to walk you through every step and answer any questions you have as thoroughly as possible.
Dental Implant Surgery
Dental implant surgery is a minimally invasive procedure. Local anesthetic is used to numb the part of the mouth where the surgery will be performed. This means as far as the procedure itself is concerned, your experience will basically be painless. Additional sedation may be administered if you’re feeling particularly nervous. Once your mouth is ready, we’ll make an incision in the gums and make a small hole in the bone underneath. A dental implant is then placed inside the hole, and the process is repeated depending on how many implants you need. A protective cap will be placed over the post while you recover.
Dental Implant Osseointegration & Abutment
Once the implant is in place, it’s time for osseointegration – the key to the success of implant-retained restorations. The titanium post will fuse with the bone, permanently fixing it into position. Osseointegration usually takes around six months, but it all depends on how many implants were placed and how quickly your mouth can heal. Then, after osseointegration is done, an abutment will be attached. This small addition to the implant post can lock a dental prosthetic in place so that it doesn’t slip or otherwise move out of place whenever you bite, speak, or chew.
Delivery of Dental Restoration(s)
No matter what kind of restoration you need – be it a crown, a bridge, or dentures – it will be placed after the mouth has fully healed and osseointegration has been completed. Each prosthetic is completely personalized so that they match your natural teeth in terms of color, size, and shape. On the day of your appointment, we’ll make any last-minute adjustments that are necessary to make sure that the end results are as natural-looking as possible. As a side benefit, since the restoration will be placed on the implant, we won’t have to make any permanent changes to the natural teeth.
Benefits of Dental Implants
For eligible candidates, there is no better tooth replacement option than dental implants. Because they become one with your jawbone, dental implants actually promote better oral health. They keep your bone sturdy and whole, preventing further tooth loss later on.
Because dental implants last a lifetime when cared for properly, you enjoy the ability to eat, speak, and smile with ease for years and years to come. You’re also freed from the mess of dental adhesives, and the stress that your ill-fitting dental prosthetic will slip out when you’re eating or speaking.
If you want to learn more about the benefits of dental implants in San Antonio, take a look below:
- You can feel more confident with your new appearance, allowing you to embrace a better quality of life that includes feeling comfortable around friends, family, and colleagues.
- You will enjoy greater self-confidence, which can be difficult for those with dentures and experience regular slippage.
- You’ll enjoy a more stable and durable prosthetic that will never slip or fall out. Their permanent placement within your jawbone will create a firm foundation for your restoration.
- You’ll be able to eat and drink your favorite foods and beverages without worrying about damaging your implants or causing them to warp. Dentures have an acrylic base that can easily break or become warped when exposed to hot temperatures.
- With dental implants in San Antonio, you can avoid a complex process for keeping them clean. Instead of removing and soaking them overnight like you would dentures, you can easily brush, floss, and rinse just like you do your regular teeth. This makes for a much easier process and ensures optimal oral health.
- You’ll enjoy greater bone health because of your dental implants’ ability to stimulate the bone and prevent facial collapse. When a prosthetic or restoration on sit on top of the gums, chewing and eating will not keep the jawbone strong. However, because your implants are surgically placed into your bone, you can enjoy improved functionality and oral health.
- You can expect prosthetics that do not irritate your soft oral tissues but instead, fit comfortably within your mouth and function just like regular teeth.
- You’ll be increasing your chances of living longer by replacing your missing teeth. The reason is that there is a direct link between tooth loss and lifespan. Individuals who have multiple missing teeth by the age of 65 are more likely to develop overall health problems that can shorten their lifespan.
- You’ll save money in the long run because you will not need to buy dental adhesives or rely on an implant dentist in San Antonio to reline or replace your implants. You also won’t need to purchase special cleaning products.
- You can enjoy the realization that dental implant placement after 10 years has a 90-95% success rate.
- You’ll enjoy a smile that is designed to last a lifetime as long as you commit to proper maintenance.
Who Dental Implants Can Help
If you are interested in learning about whether or not your mouth is suited for dental implants, do not wait to schedule an appointment with your dental implant dentist in San Antonio. Missing teeth should be replaced as soon as possible for continued oral and overall health. The good news is that dental implants can help with any pattern of missing teeth – from a single tooth to an entire lost smile. Read below to see whether implants are right for you.
Who is a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?
Almost any healthy adult can get dental implants. Usually, you’ll have to have these 3 things to be considered a good candidate for this treatment:
- Good overall health: Because dental implants require a minor surgery, you must be healthy enough to undergo the procedure.
- Great oral health: Common problems like gum disease and tooth decay can negatively impact the success of your implants, which is why they’ll need to be addressed first.
- Adequate jawbone density: In order for your treatment to be successful, your jawbone must be strong enough to support dental implants.
Even if you’re initially not a good candidate for dental implants, we can usually provide treatments that make this option possible. Preliminary dental services like bone grafting and gum disease therapy allows a wide range of patients to enjoy the benefits of dental implants without being a perfect candidate at first. Once we get you completely healthy, we can develop your personalized treatment plan around how many teeth you’re missing.
Missing 1 Tooth
To replace a single tooth, a dental implant is placed into the jaw and given time to integrate with the existing bone and soft tissue. After enough time has passed and the implant is secure, a porcelain crown can be affixed to the implant via an abutment. We will design the crown to match the size, shape, and shade of the rest of your smile for a seamless replacement.
Missing Multiple Teeth
Multiple missing teeth can be replaced via a dental bridge customized to fit on top of a pair of dental implants. The best part is that an implant bridge doesn’t rely on natural teeth for support, leaving your remaining smile healthy and untouched. While this is best suited for consecutive missing teeth (typically two to three), it’s also ideal for teeth on opposite sides of the mouth. In this instance, a partial denture can be designed to fit on top of dental implants.
Missing All Teeth
Even if you are missing all the teeth in your upper or lower arches, we can rebuild your smile with dental implants. In this instance, a custom-made denture made from metal, acrylic and ceramic materials is constructed to fit onto four to six dental implants in San Antonio. Combining the best of both worlds, implant dentures give you the most stable and secure full smile replacement.
Understanding the Cost of Dental Implants
Before you get started with your dental implant tooth replacement plan, you likely want to know more about the cost of this advanced treatment. Complex procedures like dental implant restorations do require a larger upfront investment, but because the results last for decades and deliver improved function, many patients find they are worth the additional cost. During your tooth replacement consultation, we are happy to review your treatment plan and the costs associated with every step of the process. Our team is always happy to help patients budget for the costs of their dental care plans, maximize insurance benefits, and work with CareCredit to provide low and no interest financing plans.
Concerns about financing treatment often deter patients from receiving the dental care they need. In fact, a poll conducted by a leading dental insurance provider revealed that patients’ worries they would not be able to pay for treatment was the number one reason they skip out on dental appointments. If patients avoid basic care because of cost, they are obviously much more likely to forego more advanced treatments for this reason. Even though dental implant tooth replacement is the most natural, longest lasting treatment option, many patients choose less effective treatment methods entirely due to the cost. At Laith Family Dentistry, we understand that our San Antonio dental patients may think the initial costs of implant tooth replacement are outside of their budgets. Let our Northwest or Central San Antonio dentist and dentistry team review your unique tooth replacement plan, treatment costs, and help you find ways to fit this advanced tooth replacement option into your budget. We go above and beyond to help our patients receive the advanced dentistry services they need within their budgets. If you want to learn more about your tooth replacement options, call Laith Family Dentistry to schedule a dental implant consultation appointment today.
The Cost of Dental Implants & Their Placement
The majority of the costs of your implant supported tooth replacement plan is the price of each implant post. Depending on the materials used and the type of implant, each post can cost between $500 and $2000 or more. This price is before the placement or restoration. Luckily, the cost of each additional implant post often decreases, and as long as your implants are all placed at the same appointment, additional surgical fees remain fairly low.
Other Factors that Impact the Cost of Implant Tooth Replacement
In addition to the cost of each dental implant post, you will need to consider the pricing of a number of other treatments. Unlike dental implants and their placement, most of these services do receive some coverage from insurance. Treatments you may need as part of your implant supported tooth replacement plan include:
- Preparatory bone or soft tissue grafting
- Tooth extractions
- Sedation dentistry
- Replacement restorations, including crowns, bridges, or dentures
How We Help Make Dental Implants Affordable
Before we start your implant supported tooth replacement plan, our team members will walk you through every step of the process and the costs associated with each. We ask that patients be prepared to pay for each part of the implant plan during the appointment when the service is provided rather than charging for all of these services upfront. This allows patients to pay for individual treatments over the course of the months of implant restoration. While your dental implants and their placement are not usually covered by insurance plans, other parts of your treatment, including preparatory extractions and replacement teeth, will be. Our team will maximize this coverage. We are also happy to work with CareCredit to offer low and no interest payment plans to spread the costs of treatment out over several months.
Maintaining & Caring For Your Dental Implants
Taking proper care of your dental implants is key if you want to ensure they last a lifetime. Regular dentist’s appointments, good oral hygiene at home, giving up unhealthy habits, protecting your new smile, and eating healthier foods are just a few of the many ways you can enjoy your new teeth and worry less about potential problems that might develop. At Laith Family Dentistry, Dr. Kadamani will provide you with clear instructions on appropriate dental implant care in San Antonio, so you are equipped and ready to take care of your smile once your implants are firmly in place.
Making Oral Hygiene a Priority
While at home, it’s essential that you maintain good oral hygiene. Brushing twice a day for two minutes using fluoride toothpaste as well as flossing once a day (at least) and rinsing with antimicrobial mouthwash will keep decay and gum disease away. Choosing to neglect this vitally important routine will only cause your oral health to worsen and result in potential dental implant failure.
Eating a Healthy Diet
Foods high in Vitamin C and calcium are some of the best you can eat when living with dental implants in San Antonio. Leafy greens, lean proteins, fruits, and vegetables are also healthier alternatives that you should incorporate into your daily diet, as they will strengthen regular tooth enamel and encourage healthy gums. Too much sugar and starch can cause the development of gum disease and tooth decay that can affect your natural teeth. Swap out the cookies for an apple or carrots and watch your smile maintain its health and appearance.
Breaking Bad Habits
Do you smoke or use your teeth to open packages and containers? Do you eat ice or bite your fingernails? No matter which unhealthy habit you regularly practice, it’s best to give them up before you ever receive your dental implants. A sudden chip, break, or crack in your new teeth can result in additional time and money being spent caring for your new smile. Dental implants are an expensive investment you don’t want to compromise, so make sure you’re seeking alternative solutions to help curb these bad habits (i.e., sugar-free chewing gum, cessation groups).
Protecting Your Dental Implants
If you enjoy playing sports, one of the first things you should purchase after receiving dental implants is a customized mouthguard. These not only protect your teeth and soft tissues from hard-hitting impact, but they help to absorb any pressure or force and spread it out instead of allowing the hit to focus on one particular area. Mouthguards are also helpful if you grind or clench your teeth while you sleep. Too much pressure applied to your new teeth can cause them to become loose and fail over time. Wearing a customized mouthguard that fits comfortably and offers maximum support will ensure greater longevity for your implants.
Scheduling Regular Dental Checkups
Even if all your teeth are replaced with implant dentures, seeing an implant dentist in Central San Antonio is necessary. Why? Because although these permanent prosthetics cannot decay, it is possible to still develop gum disease, oral cancer, and other serious conditions. Avoiding dental implant failure is the goal once your titanium posts are in place. Seeing a trusted professional every six months for dental checkups and cleanings will not only serve to address problems early on should they be present, but your dentist can help keep your smile looking and feeling its best.
Dental Implant FAQ’s
How Long Do Dental Implants Last?
Many patients switch to dental implants because of their unique benefits. One of these many advantages is their ability to last a life time with proper care. You can get the most out of your implants by brushing and flossing, visiting our office regularly, and avoiding any poor lifestyle habits like smoking or heavily consuming alcohol. One of the benefits of dental implants is that their maintenance isn’t much different from your natural teeth. If you’re looking for a permanent solution, dental implants will give you a replacement that you can count on for decades to come.
Does it Hurt to Receive Dental Implants?
After hearing about the process of receiving dental implants, many patients assume that it’s painful. However, the discomfort that you feel can be compared to a simple tooth extraction. We will ensure you’re numb, comfortable, and relaxed before beginning the procedure. We even offer sedation dentistry in the form of nitrous oxide (also known as laughing gas) to keep you calm and happy. While drilling holes into your jaw doesn’t sound comfortable, your jawbone doesn’t have any pain-sensing nerves, which makes the surgery much less painful than you may think.
How Many Dental Implants Do I Need?
The number of dental implants that you need will depend directly on how much of your natural dental structure that you’re missing. In some cases, multiple implants are needed to support one tooth, which is another variable that you should account for. Dr. Kadamani will carefully examine your mouth to see how many dental implants you need based on the condition of your oral health, your needs, and the number of teeth that you’re missing.
Can Dental Implants Help with My Dentures?
Do you have dentures that slip and slide around? We can use some strategically placed dental implants to anchor and support your dentures. Now, you can receive a full smile replacement with the biting power and strength of dental implants. This allows you to eat more of your favorite foods and it gives you the confidence of knowing that you can eat, speak, and laugh in public with dentures that aren’t going to shift around in your mouth.
You Can Benefit From Whole-Tooth Replacement
The only way to know for sure whether dental implants are a good option for you is to schedule an appointment with your implant dentist in San Antonio. Contact Laith Family Dentistry to request an appointment and let’s discuss your dental implants today!