There has been a tremendous improvement in dental health in the U.S in the past years. However, despite the improvement, many people suffer tooth loss, mainly due to periodontal disease and tooth decay. In the past, only two options were available for people with missing teeth: dentures and bridges. In recent times, you do not have to worry about missing teeth with the introduction of dental implants. Implants offer a long-lasting solution for tooth loss. In addition to being durable, implants have a natural appearance and will blend in well with the other teeth. Upon fitting a dental implant, it is hard for people to tell that you have an implant. Encino Dental Implant offers a reliable solution for people with missing teeth. 

Understanding Dental Implants

A dental implant is an effective replacement tooth root. Implants help offer a firm foundation for permanent or removable replacement teeth. The replacement teeth are made to match the natural color of your teeth.  Dental implants have been in existence since 1952. A Swedish orthopedic by the name Per-Ingvar Brånemark invented dental implants. Dental implants offer standard care for prosthetic replacement of teeth in the field of dentistry. Dental implants consist of surgical implants fitted into the jawbone. Over a span of several months, the fixtures fuse with the bone, offering firm support for replacement teeth. 

In other words, a dental implant is an artificial tooth root whose purpose is to hold a replacement tooth or a dental bridge in place. Fusing a dental implant into the jawbone allows dental surgeons to mimic a natural tooth. A tooth placed on a dental implant is able to stand on its own without affecting the nearby teeth. Also, a tooth placed on a dental implant is stable and firm, giving it the ability to perform like a natural tooth.  The process of fusing a dental implant into the jawbone is called osseointegration. 

Dental implants are made from titanium. This material is favorable and allows the implants to integrate with the bone without the body, fighting them as foreign objects.  The science and the technology behind dental implants keep on improving. The improvement in technology has led to improved outcomes of the placement of dental implants. Dental implants have a high success rate. 

A Candidate for Dental Implants

Dental implants come in handy in replacing a single tooth, several teeth, or all the teeth. The goal of tooth replacement is to restore the functionality of the teeth and also help improve aesthetics. When choosing a tooth replacement option, you may choose between cemented dental bridges, partial or complete dentures, or dental implants. 

Generally, if you have missing teeth, you are a good candidate for dental implants.  Some conditions and diseases may affect whether dental implants are a good option for you. Therefore, it is important that you be of good health when going for dental implants.  Some conditions may affect the fusion of dental implants with the jawbone. The factors include alcoholism, smoking, cancer, diabetes, or uncontrolled periodontal gum disease.  When seeking dental implants, it is important to inform the dental surgeon about all your existing medical conditions, both present and past. You should also inform the dental surgeon about the medicine you may be taking, whether alternative or prescribed medicine. 

Before placing dental implants, a dental surgeon conducts a detailed assessment of your entire stomato-gnathic system. This is a thorough examination of your mouth and your jaws.  The surgeon may also compile several records which may comprise of models of your mouth and bite. The surgeon may also come up with specialized x-rays (radiographs). The imaging may comprise of CT scans (computerized tomography).  The use of computer imaging while fitting dental implants ensures that the dental surgeon places the implants in the right position on the bone. 

Placement of dental implants requires a surgical procedure. Using a surgical guide, the experts create precision channels in the jawbone. The dental surgeon then places the dental implants into the sites and ensures that there is an intimate fusion of the implant with the bone.  Upon fitting the dental implants, you would have to wait for two to six months before having the tooth restorations attached to the implants. This gives the dental implants ample time to fuse to the bone. 

Why should you go for dental implants? Upon losing a tooth or several teeth, missing to replace the missing teeth may lead to bone loss.  For the bone to maintain its form and dentistry, it requires constant stimulation.  For the bone that supports and surrounds the teeth, constant stimulation comes from the teeth.  Tooth loss leads to loss of stimulation of the alveolar bone and consequently results in bone loss.  During the first year after tooth loss, there is a decrease in the width of the alveolar bone. Over the next few years after tooth loss, there is a decrease in the height of the alveolar bone.

Tooth loss also leads to loss of functionality and aesthetic standards of your teeth.  After the loss of alveolar bone, the problem may spread basal bone, which lies beneath the alveolar bone. With time, the problem may spread to the jawbone proper, which will also begin to melt away. 

Regeneration of Jawbone to Support Dental Implants

If you have already suffered jawbone loss after tooth loss, you do not have to give up on dental implants. Several surgical techniques are available and can help to regrow or regenerate the bone that has been lost. This will, in turn, help to provide the necessary bone substance that will help to anchor dental implants. One of the main advantages of considering dental implants in replacing missing teeth is the maintenance of your jawbone.

For you to stay healthy, the jawbone will require constant stimulation. Dental implants fuse to the bone, helping to stabilize it and prevent further bone loss.  The process of resorption (bone loss) is a natural and inevitable process.  If the jawbone is no longer connected or supporting the teeth, bone loss will occur. However, with dental implants, you can stop the bone loss process and preserve the remaining bone. 

Types of Dental Implants

There are two major types of dental implants: Endosteal and subperiosteal.  The implant dentist places the endosteal implants in the jawbone. Typically, the endosteal implants are made of titanium. The implants have the shape of small screws. These are the most common forms of dental implants.

Subperiosteal implants are placed under the gum but over or on the jawbone. This form of a dental implant may be ideal if you do not have enough healthy natural jawbones.  You may also choose this form of the dental implant if you cannot or if you do not wish to undergo a bone augmentation procedure to help rebuild your lost jawbone. 

Dental experts may make use of various procedures to rebuild your jawbone if you do not have enough jawbone to support dental implants.  Some of the procedure s that may help to provide a sturdy foundation for dental implants include bone augmentation.  This is the process of re-generating or restoring bone in your jaw if the jaw cannot support dental implants. To achieve the best results, dental experts may make use of growth factors and bone additives. 

Sinus elevation, also known as sinus augmentation, may help to restore the jawbone. The procedure entails adding bone below the sinus if your natural bone has deteriorated due to the loss of upper back teeth.

The experts may also restore the jawbone using ridge expansion exercise. If you do not have a wide enough jaw to support dental implants, the dental experts may add bone graft material. The material is added to a small ridge or space along the top of your jaw. 

Advantages of Dental Implants

Dental implants offer a wide range of benefits over other tooth replacement options like dentures and dental bridges. Some of the leading benefits of dental implants include:

Improved appearance

With dental implants, you will not only look good, but you will also feel great.  Dental implants will fit, look, and function like your natural teeth. Implants are so comfortable that you will not have to think about them. You will forget that you have implants because they are natural and do not cause discomfort. You will be free to brush and floss the dental implants just like your natural teeth. You will not have to remove the implants to clean them, and this offers a high level of convenience.  Dental implants help to enhance your appearance. You will be able to retain the natural shape of your face and your natural smile. 


Dental implants also offer an advantage because they are long-lasting.  With the proper care and maintenance, dental implants are made to last and can serve you for many decades. Dental bridges and dentures may need a replacement every five years. Therefore, these replacement options may consume a significant portion of your time and money. However, with dental implants, you do not have to replace the implants every now and then. 

Boosts your Confidence

Dental implants help to improve your appearance, and this, in turn, boosts your confidence. Tooth loss may have a great impact on your confidence. For instance, you may fear to smile to avoid showing the unattractive gaps in your mouth. With dental implants and teeth replacement, you can restore your beautiful smile. Dental implants are secure, and you do not have to worry about implants slipping or clicking while you eat, talk, and laugh. You will have a more natural speech, and you do not have to shy away from taking part in conversations. You can be as active as you desire, and you can also smile as much as you want. You do not have to worry about eating your favorite food.

Dental implants are convenient. Unlike dentures, which are removable, dental implants will help to eliminate the inconvenience and embarrassment of removing dentures. You do not have to bear with messy adhesives to help keep the implants in place, as in the case of dentures. 

Bone Maintenance

Dental implants help protect your facial bone and enhance healthy teeth. If you leave empty spaces in your mouth after tooth loss, you may develop more complicated problems like jawbone deterioration.  Dental implants will help to stimulate bone growth and prevent bone loss. If you get dental implants soon after losing your tooth, you will avoid bone loss at the site. When fitting the dental implants, the dental surgeon does not need to grind down the adjacent teeth, as in the case of dental bridges and anchors. Dental implants will not interfere with the neighboring teeth, and this will help improve your overall oral health.

Because the dentist does not alter the nearby teeth to support the implant, your other teeth will remain intact, and this will boost your long-term oral health. The individual dental implants will allow easy access between the teeth.

Improved Speech

Dental implants help to improve your speech. If you have poor-fitting dentures, the teeth can slip in the mouth, making you to slur or mumble your words. This is not the case with dental implants; implants will allow you to speak freely without the worry that your teeth may slip.

What to Expect

You may not be sure about the process of fitting dental implants. What does the procedure entail? The first step entails making the initial consultation with a dental expert.  Your implant dentist will conduct a thorough examination of your mouth. The dentist may take 3D images and x-rays in preparation for the procedure. The dentist may also discuss with you the various implant options to choose from. The implant dentist also develops a plan for your implant surgery.

Dental implant placement starts with oral surgery involving tooth or teeth extraction.  Oral surgery is necessary if the site of the dental implant still has an existing damaged tooth in it. The implant dentist will have to extract the damaged tooth in order to prepare the site for dental implant placement. The implant dentist may then place a cadaver or synthetic bone to help achieve a solid base of bone to support the dental implant. 

The next step comprises of dental implant placement. After meeting the dentist for the next scheduled appointment, the dentist will place the dental implants on your jawbone at the site of the missing tooth. Different people respond differently to the procedure. At this point, you are likely to experience a little pain and discomfort. The discomfort is minimal, and you can resume work the following day after the procedure.

To keep you comfortable during the dental placement procedure, your dentist may make use of IV sedation and local anesthesia. After the procedure, you may experience mils post-implant surgery discomfort. The discomfort is similar to discomfort from any other form of dental surgery. Post-implant surgery discomfort may be accompanied by minor bleeding, swelling, bruising, and mild pain. Your dentist may give you pain and anti-inflammatory medication. You can also manage the pain and discomfort with over-the-counter medication. 

Through the process of osseointegration, the jawbone will grow together with the dental implant and form a strong and durable foundation for your replacement teeth.  The healing process may take several months. During this period, you can go on with your normal life. To make sure that the dental implants heal safety, you should restrict your diet to soft foods in the first few weeks after the implant surgery.  During the healing process, your implant dentist may place some temporary teeth if you prefer.

Upon the complete bonding of the dental implants with your jawbone, the implant dentist places a small connector known as an abutment on the dental implant right above your gum line. In some instances, your implant surgeon may place the abutment at the same time as the dental implant.

Finally, once your gums heal fully, your implant dentist makes impressions of your mouth and the remaining teeth and comes up with artificial teeth. The teeth may comprise individual crowns or implant-supported bridges or dentures with multiple replacement teeth. The dentist attaches the replacement teeth on the abutment. The replacement teeth are not probed to decay. However, it is important to ensure that you conduct routine care, cleanings, and check-ups. You should take care of replacement teeth the same way you take care of your natural teeth. 

The entire process of placing dental implants may take three to nine months. The time it takes will depend on a number of factors, including the type of implant and the number of replacement teeth you receive. Upon visiting the dental implant placement, you will need to visit your dentist periodically for follow-up check-ups.

Expected Results

Most dental implant procedures are usually successful. In some rare cases, the bone may fail to fuse sufficiently with the dental implant. One of the factors that may contribute to dental implant failure and complications is smoking. If the bone fails to fuse with the dental implant, the dentist may remove the implant and clean up the bone. The implant dentist can then try the procedure again after waiting for three months. To help your dental work and to make the implants and the remaining natural teeth last longer, you can take several steps:

You have to practice excellent dental hygiene. It is important to ensure that you keep the dental implants, your gum tissue, and your replacement teeth clean and healthy. You can make use of specially designed toothbrushes that easily slide between the teeth. Using specialized brushes will make it easy to clean the areas around your teeth, gums, and implants.

You should also do away with habits that are likely to damage the dental implants and the replacement teeth. For instance, you should ensure that you do not chew hard items like hard candy or ice. Chewing on hard items may break your natural teeth and your dental crowns. If you grind your teeth, you should ensure that you seek treatment. You should also avoid caffeine and tooth-staining tobacco. 

Above all, you should visit your dentist on a regular basis. Scheduling regular dental check-ups will ensure that you have good oral health and will also boost the proper functioning of your dental implants.  Ensure that you adhere to the advice of your dental expert and follow the recommended professional cleanings.

The Cost of Dental Implants

The cost of installing dental implants may vary depending on the region. The cost may also vary depending on the dentist performing the implant placement procedure. The average cost for a single dental implant may range between $3,000 and $ 4,500. This cost is inclusive of all procedures, including dental surgery conducted before the placement of dental implants. The cost is also inclusive of other components like implant crowns.

Most dental insurance covers do not cater to dental implants, but the situation may vary on a case to case basis. Some dental insurance coverage may help cater to the implant crowns. Many dental insurance companies consider dental implant placement an elective procedure and do not include it in the dental insurance package. Many dental insurance companies in the U.S have maintained this position despite the fact that implants have become the standard of care for dealing with missing teeth. 

Many people rely on dental implants as the favored option for tooth replacement. The procedure offers a conservative way of replacing missing teeth. Dental implant placement provides predictable results and has a high success rate. 

Risks of Dental Implants

The benefits offered by dental implants placement exceeds the risks involved in conducting the procedure.  The procedure calls for careful planning to ensure that the patient is in good health to undergo dental implant surgery. Some of the complications that are likely to occur include bleeding disorders. People with existing medical conditions, people with infections, or allergies must be particularly careful while undergoing the procedure. 

Failures of the dental implant procedure may only occur in the unlikely event of overloading of the dental implant or fracture of the dental implant.  Poor positioning of the dental implant or damage of the surrounding nerves may lead to dental implant failure. For the best results, you should only have an experienced professional perform the procedure. 

Contact a Dental Implant Surgeon Near Me

The process of dental implant placement is complicated and requires expertise and experience. If handled by the right expert, the procedure offers an excellent tooth-replacement option. For reliable dental implant placement, contact Encino Dental Implant at 818-810-7535.