One of our goals for 2014 is to provide more information on the subject of dental implants to educate our Vancouver patients and Kitsilano community. Since dental implants are a common topic of interest amongst new and old patients, we thought we would share insights about the procedure itself, and the cost and risks involved with surgery. We also want to remind everyone that we have an earlier article on the Types of Dental Implants as well.
1. How long does the Dental Implant procedure take?
After careful examination and planning, the entire process can take between 3 – 9 months to fully heal depending on if grafting needs to done. The first phase is the implant surgery where we insert the implant, which that will acts as the new root. Following surgery, we wait until the patient’s mouth heals and osseointegration takes place. The healing period differs for each individual. The second phase requires a short visit to the dental office to have an impression of the implant taken so a custom made crown can be fabricated. Below is a useful video that demonstrates the procedure:
2. How much do dental implants cost?
Dental implants don’t come as a “one size fits all” solution. Every patient has unique needs, whether they have lost a tooth in an accident, as a result of an infection, due to a failed root canal or due to periodontal disease. With this in mind however, we usually advise patients that the average price for a single implant is $3,400. Also see our blog post on Dental Implant Pricing.
3. What are the advantages of Dental Implants vs Dentures?
There are many benefits to implants over dentures. In principle, an implant is intended to look and function like your natural teeth would, and can last a lifetime. They are secured to your jaw where they serve as an anchor to the prosthetic dental crown. Implants are strong, easily maintained and preserve the health of the jawbone. On the other hand, since dentures are removable, patients often experience challenges with keeping them in place consistently. Dentures often slip and move around, which can be unnerving in social settings. The adhesive used to keep them in place can come with an unpleasant taste. Furthermore, dentures require far more maintenance and will eventually need to be replaced.
4. What are the risks with Dental Implants?
Again, since implants are a customized solution, a small percentage of implants can fail for a variety of reasons. However, in most cases where failure occurs, this means that the implant has not osseointegrated into the bone and the procedure can be done again.
5. How do I manage dental care after the procedure is done?
Caring for teeth restored with dental implants is just like caring for your natural teeth: brush, floss and maintain regular dental cleanings and check-ups, as scheduled. Additional cleaning aids also may be recommended to help you keep your teeth healthy at home. As is the case with natural teeth, we work with our patients to ensure the longevity of your dental implant. While implant teeth can’t get cavities, they are subject to the same wear-and-tear as natural teeth.
It’s common for patients to feel anxiety about various dental procedures, including dental implant surgery. Again, we think the video above provides a solid visual detail of the surgery – take a moment to scan through some of the key steps. As always, please contact us if you would like to learn more about whether dental implants are right for you.