Dental Implants – Big Pine Key, FL
Long-Lasting and Natural-Looking Tooth Replacement
When it comes to tooth replacement solutions, there are many options for you to consider. However, there’s only one option that actually addresses the underlying problems that exist underneath your gum tissue where the bone lies, and that’s dental implants in Big Pine Key, FL. After dental implants are placed inside of your mouth, you can expect your smile to not only look incredibly natural but also become fully functional. To learn the details of the treatment or schedule your very first consultation with Dr. Cobb and Dr. Mazor, the in-house periodontist, give our dental office a call!
Why Choose Cosmetic & Restorative Dentistry of the Keys for Dental Implants?
- In-House Periodontist Performs Surgical Portion of Treatment
- Natural-Looking Restorations Made from Durable Dental Materials
- Soft Tissue Laser Technology Improves Precision and Accuracy
What are Dental Implants?
A dental implant is a long-lasting tooth replacement that is designed to not only be reliable, but last for decades. Made from a titanium post, an abutment (or connector) and a dedicated restoration, dental implants are largely recommended by dentists due to their oral health benefits and esthetics. Once fully integrated, you can eat the foods you enjoy with confidence and smile without anyone knowing you’ve even had dental implants placed! Thanks to their versatility, it doesn’t matter how many teeth you’ve lost; dental implants can make your smile complete!
The 4 Step Dental Implant Process
At Cosmetic & Restorative Dentistry of the Keys, we can complete the entire implantation process under one roof. With the help of Dr. Mazon, our periodontist, we can perform the surgical phase of your procedure in-house, meaning you won’t have to visit another doctor offsite just to have your treatment completed. Once the implant has healed, we’ll place an abutment and restoration on top, effectively restoring your smile to the fullest. The length of your overall treatment will vary depending on the complexity of your needs, as no two patients are alike. Although the process to receive your dental implants takes time, the results are well worth the wait. To learn more about how dental implants work in Big Pine Key, we invite you to review the following information and contact our office with any additional questions.
Initial Dental Implant Consultation
When meeting with your dentist for your initial consultation, you can expect to receive a full oral examination that will determine your eligibility for treatment. Surprisingly, most adults are qualified to receive dental implants; however, if you require preliminary treatments like bone grafting, periodontal therapy, or tooth extraction, do not be alarmed. These will help to address certain issues that we might find and help to create a more positive and healthier environment for your future implants.
Dental Implant Surgery
Because we are able to complete the dental implant surgery in-house by our trusted periodontist, Dr. Mazon, you can take comfort knowing that you’ll be in the same location for the entire dental implant process. You’ll initially receive local anesthesia to help numb the appropriate areas of your mouth before we begin to make small incisions in your gums. Exposing the bone, we will then place each dental implant into its correct location, positioning it for maximum support. After closing the gum tissue, we will place a protective cap over the implant and send you home to begin the recovery phase of treatment.
Dental Implant Osseointegration/Abutment
During your time at home, which will last anywhere from 3-6 months, you will be expected to follow some general tips and rules as to how you can ensure successful healing. The osseointegration process will occur during this time, which will involve your dental implants in Big Pine Key fusing with your bone and surrounding tissues. Creating a strong and stable foundation for your new smile, you will then return to our office once you are fully healed to receive your metal abutments. These are small, metal connectors that attach to your implants and help keep your customized restoration firmly in place.
Delivery of Dental Implant Restorations
The last step you can expect is to receive your finalized restoration. Dental implants are known for their versatility, so whether you need to replace one, multiples, or an entire row of teeth, you can expect your crown, bridge, or denture to look and feel completely natural. Made from the highest quality materials, your implant dentist in Big Pine Key will secure it into place, making sure it blends in beautifully with any of your remaining, healthy teeth. Once fitted with your new smile, you’ll be free to start enjoying the many great benefits only dental implants can provide.
Benefits of Dental Implants
Filling the gaps in your smile is a huge benefit you can always expect after receiving dental implants. However, it is far from the only benefit to look forward to after your long tooth replacement process. While you’re welcome to ask questions during your consultation, we encourage you to look over the list of benefits to keep in mind below as you prepare ahead of your next appointment with Dr. Cobb and her team!
- Eat the Foods You Love: Dental implants replace the root portion of teeth, not just the crown like bridges and dentures do. By replacing the root, you’re getting a tooth replacement that actually restores your ability to chew the foods you enjoy with confidence.
- Make Your Oral Hygiene Easy: There’s no need to remove your replacement teeth just to keep them or the rest of your mouth clean. Simply brush and floss as normal to prevent plaque buildup on your dental implants and keep your gum tissue healthy.
- Smile with Confidence: Your dental implants are fastened tightly in place, so there’s no need to worry about them shifting or sliding while you eat or speak to friends and family. This is sure to prevent any embarrassing mishaps that may have happened with a traditional denture.
- Protect Your Jawbone Health: When teeth are lost, the jawbone is no longer stimulated by regular chewing and grinding. With the root restored, you can prevent bone from deteriorating. This in turn also reduces your risk for future tooth loss.
- Keep Your Existing Tooth Structure: Since dental implants are strong enough to hold dedicated restorations entirely on their own, you don’t have to modify existing teeth just to have them placed. This cannot be said for other tooth replacement options, such as traditional bridges or dentures.
- Eat a Balanced Diet with Ease: When you’re missing multiple teeth, getting a balanced diet can prove to be more difficult because you’re limited to the foods you can safely consume. That’s not the case with dental implants. Getting your daily source of vitamins and minerals from the foods you love is simple and straightforward; no longer do you have to “prepare” your meals for your denture.
- Maintain Your Youthful Appearance: Those with tooth loss tend to experience accelerated sagging and hollowing of the cheeks. As a result of the stimulation your dental implant provides, you can also maintain your jaw and face’s natural shape.
- Incredibly High Success Rate: Dental implants are known for having an extremely high success rate when placed by a professional. Even after 10 years of use, they have an average success rate as high as 98 percent, which should give you the confidence that your tooth replacement is capable of withstanding the test of time.
- Proven Longevity : Dental implants are a tooth replacement that, when maintained well, can last several decades without issue. In fact, many patients enjoy their dental implants for the rest of their life when they practice diligent daily oral hygiene and stay on top of routine checkups with a dentist.
Who Dental Implants Can Help
By replacing the roots of the teeth, dental implants are able to address varying levels of tooth loss. In fact, there’s a high likelihood that you’ll qualify for the treatment no matter how many teeth you’re missing! To find out whether you’re a good candidate, you’ll need to attend a consultation with your dental implant dentist in Big Pine Key. From there, we can go over the criteria you must meet and walk you through the treatment process.
Who Is a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?
Nearly any generally healthy adult can be eligible for dental implants. However, certain health conditions could make the treatment riskier if left unaddressed. To be considered a good dental implant candidate, you’ll need to have the following:
- Sufficient jawbone density – If the jawbone isn’t thick enough, it won’t be able to support the implant posts. Patients who have lost jawbone density may need to undergo bone grafting prior to dental implant surgery.
- Great oral health – Gum disease, tooth decay, and other untreated oral health problems could prevent your implants from being successful. During your consultation, we’ll identify whether these issues are present and plan to treat them before moving forward with the dental implant process.
- Suitable overall health – Some general medical conditions could impact your ability to safely complete the oral surgery required to place dental implants in Big Pine Key. Make sure to ask your primary care physician whether you can undergo the procedure without any risks.
When our team has verified that you’ve met all of these criteria, we can start planning out your treatment, which will vary depending on how many teeth you’re replacing.
Missing One Tooth
Replacing a single tooth involves vertically positioning one implant post into the empty space. After it has integrated with the jawbone, we can attach a porcelain crown on top, which flawlessly mimics your natural tooth enamel. Plus, we don’t need to remove any enamel from your adjacent teeth, which is necessary to support a traditional dental bridge.
Missing Multiple Teeth
Instead of permanently altering two of your remaining teeth, we can anchor a dental bridge onto two implants – one at each end of the gap – to replace three or four missing teeth in a row. Not only do implant bridges help you retain more of your natural tooth structure, but they’re also more reliable and long-lasting than conventional bridges. If you’re missing several teeth throughout the mouth, we may be able to strategically place a small number of implants along the arch to hold a removable partial denture in place. This solution is also more lifelike and dependable than a regular partial.
Missing All Teeth
Those who would typically need full denture to replace an entire row of missing teeth may want to consider an implant denture instead. Using just four to eight implants per arch, we can create ample support for a prosthetic that stays in place just as reliably as your original teeth. With this strong foundation, your teeth won’t shift around when you’re speaking or eating. Depending on your preferences, your implant denture can be removable or fixed in place.
Understanding the Cost of Dental Implants
The only way to know for sure what your dental implant treatment will cost is to have a detailed examination and consultation performed by Dr. Cobb. During this visit, you’ll be able to confirm your needs, such as the number of implants required to restore your smile, where they need to be placed, and the type of restorations needed to do so. Even if treatment seems expensive now, most dentists consider it to be the most cost-effective solution for replacing teeth thanks to their longevity. Think of it as a long-term investment that not only provides you with lasting oral function, but costs less to maintain compared to other solutions.
Preliminary Treatments & Dental Implant Surgery
During your initial consultation at our office, you can also confirm if preparatory treatments are needed prior to surgery, including periodontal therapy, bone grafts, sinus lifts, or other procedures that make implant placement viable.
Keep in mind that surgery will incur its own unique costs and can vary depending on how many dental implants you need to have placed. Because we perform the entire procedure in-house, you can expect your dental fees to be more compact and convenient rather than having one set of fees from our office and one from a separate oral surgeon.
The Parts of Your Dental Implant
The more implants you’ll need to replace teeth, the more materials are required to create your tooth replacements (which in this case would be titanium). Of course, where the implants come from and how they are made can also influence cost, which is why implant manufacturers tend to have different prices for their products. If you’re curious about why we use the brands we do, please let us know; we stand behind the products we utilize to help patients rebuild their smile.
Final Dental Implant Restoration
Implant restorations can vary in price quite dramatically depending on how many teeth you need to replace. For example, implant crowns are substantially cheaper than an implant bridge or denture simply because they require far less material and labor to design and fabricate. No matter what restoration you need to rebuild your smile, you can expect it to look incredibly natural and last for decades with daily oral hygiene and care.
Does My Dental Insurance Cover Dental Implants?
More often than not, dental implants do not receive coverage from dental insurance plans. With that said, there are some exceptions worth looking into ahead of time. For example, insurance plans may offer coverage for the restoration or any preparatory treatments needed ahead of implant surgery. If they do receive coverage, it will likely be covered only at a certain percentage. Our team is happy to help you maximize any benefits you have and look over your plan in detail ahead of time.
Making Dental Implants Affordable
Outside of dental insurance, there are other ways you can make your tooth replacement treatment more affordable! For example, third-party financiers like CareCredit allow you to pay for treatments over a longer period of time with little to no interest attached to your monthly installments. This can make even the most expensive restorative services manageable on a budget. Furthermore, we’re happy to offer a new patient special where any treatment that costs $500 or more gets you a $100 discount.
Dental Implant Post-Op Instructions
We can complete the entire dental implant placement process from start to finish in our office. During this time, you will be given specific post-op instructions to help you remain comfortable and heal quickly. Read on to learn more about what you can expect from the healing process and when you should give us a call.
What to Do Directly After Dental Implant Surgery
When you take all the proper steps, you can make the healing process go quickly and smoothly. Be sure that you are doing the following:
- Do not spit. Use tissues or swallow saliva.
- Do not use drinking straws.
- Do not smoke for at least the first day.
- Do your best to keep fingers and tongue away from the surgical site.
Common Side-Effects When Recovering from Dental Implant Placement
It is normal to experience some mild side effects for the first few days after your surgery. Here are some of the most common ones:
- Bleeding: Intermittent bleeding can last for multiple days. This can be lessened with gauze and light pressure.
- Swelling: Inflammation is common for the first 72 hours, and it can sometimes last over a week. To reduce this, use a cold compress.
- Soreness: The area may be sore for a few days, but this can be managed by taking pain relievers as directed.
All of these effects should be temporary and gradually subside as time goes by. If any persist, let us know so we can help.
Your Diet After Dental Implant Surgery
Be mindful of your diet for the days following your procedure. Here are some things that are easier to enjoy after your placement procedure:
- Scrambled eggs
- Mashed potatoes
- Ice cream
- Apple sauce
Once your discomfort subsides, you can switch back to your normal diet. Just keep in mind that it’s still a good idea to avoid chewing directly where your implant was placed.
Post-Op Health & Oral Hygiene
It’s important that you keep your mouth clean after surgery. This way, the implant will have a better chance of integrating with your jawbone successfully. Here are some practices that will be useful:
- Brush your teeth the day after your surgery. Be particularly careful around the surgical site.
- Rinse your mouth two to three times a day with salt water.
- Avoid using mouthwashes that contain high levels of alcohol.
What to Do After Your New Teeth Are Attached
Once your smile has healed and your implants have fused to the jawbone, you’ve finished the hard part! When your dental crown, bridge, or denture is attached to the implant(s), you may experience mild sensitivity, but this is easy to control with over-the-counter pain relievers, and it is temporary. There shouldn’t be any bleeding, swelling, or extensive recovery.
Maintaining & Caring for Your Dental Implants
Nowadays, dental implants have become the treatment of choice for many patients. They’re considered the gold standard of tooth replacement because they’re able to keep your smile strong, complete, and healthy for a lifetime! Of course, that’s only the case if you take proper care of them. At Cosmetic & Restorative Dentistry of the Keys, we’ll thoroughly explain which precautions you should take to ensure your implants stay firmly in place for years to come. If you’d like to know what to expect, continue reading or give our office a call today!
Make Oral Hygiene a Priority
Just because dental implants can’t get cavities doesn’t mean you can slack off on your oral hygiene. If you want your smile to remain as healthy as possible, you must continue brushing, flossing, and rinsing as usual. Following a solid at-home dental care routine will prevent harmful bacteria from attacking your soft oral tissues, preventing potential bone and tooth loss.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Even though you can eat almost any food you want with dental implants, you should avoid overindulging in sugary, starchy, and acidic foods. They can be detrimental to your implants, increasing the chances of dental implant failure. Instead, try eating a well-balanced diet full of nutrient-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, dairy products, lean proteins, and whole grains. They’ll keep your jawbone strong and gum tissue healthy!
Break Bad Habits
Do you smoke, bite your fingernails, use your teeth as tools, or chew on pens or pencils? While these habits may seem harmless, they can destroy your enamel and dental implants. For that reason, you should do your best to kick these poor dental habits to the curb. If you need help quitting smoking, don’t hesitate to reach out to our office. We can provide you with the support, resources, and guidance you need to make the feat as easy as possible.
Protect Your Dental Implants
If you regularly play sports or grind your teeth at night, you should ask our team about a custom-made oral device. An athletic mouthguard can protect your teeth against any impact should you sustain a blow to the face. Meanwhile, a nightguard can keep your enamel safe from the force of you grinding your teeth at night.
Schedule Regular Dental Checkups
Aside from good oral hygiene, you must visit our dentist every six months for a checkup and cleaning. These preventive visits are essential to ensure no oral health problems developing. With early intervention, you can avoid needing more costly and extensive procedures down the line. We’ll make sure your implants stay nice and healthy for the rest of your life!