When you are missing teeth, it becomes more than a matter of appearance. The fact is, missing teeth can make the rest of your teeth prone to shifting, or even falling out due to the lack of supporting teeth on either side. Today, many people are considering dental implants as an alternative to traditional methods of tooth replacement, including bridges or partial dentures. Why?
Because dental implants do not slip when eating, will not affect your speech pattern, and require no special care aside from your regular dental routine. Here are some answers to commonly asked questions when considering dental implants.
How are dental implants different?
Dental implants are a permanent replacement for one or more missing teeth. A small titanium post is surgically implanted into the gum line at the location of missing teeth. Your dentist will then attach either a dental bridge or a replacement tooth creating strong replacement teeth that do not shake loose when eating and will not affect your speech delivery. The dental implants are cared for in the same manner that you would care for you original teeth – flossing, brushing, and rinsing.
What type of issues can dental implants solve?
Dental implants are more than a cosmetic solution to missing teeth replacement. They also act to prevent other teeth from shifting, which can cause further gum and tooth problems. Some patients who suffer from irregular placement of teeth benefit from having their bite straightened with dental implants. The result is improved chewing which benefits food digestion. If you are suffering from jaw pain caused by TMJ or a misalignment of the jaw, dental implants can help to correct this condition and alleviate the tender muscles, jaw pain, and headaches or ear aches associated with TMJ.
What are the health risks for this procedure?
Similar to any dental surgery, implants pose the risk of infection or nerve damage – even though these issues are not common or are alleviated with common medications. Other less common risks include improperly placed dental implants in the upper jaw that could cause sinus problems or damage to other teeth or mouth tissue. Dental implants have become a common dental surgery and patients can expect good results and some pain at the insertion site, which is easily treated with a Tylenol prescription.
What steps are needed before the surgery?
A dental implant procedure begins with an exam and diagnosis from a dental professional. X-rays of your mouth is used to determine the least intrusive procedure for the greatest gain in replacing missing or bad teeth. Your dentist will also examine the quality of your gum line and the quantity of gum tissue for a successful implant procedure. As with any surgery, each procedure is customized for the patient’s condition, but most procedures can be completed in one day – while others that may require additional bone grafting can take months.
Are dental implants insured?
Most dental insurance programs cover dental emergencies and routine dental maintenance. Most also have a financial cap or a yearly maximum to be spent on standard treatment options such as extractions, a bridge, or dentures. While dental implants tend to be excluded from most dental insurance programs, when you partner with a dental implant specialist, financial options for payment are usually flexible. Always discuss your case with your dentist. If your missing teeth are part of a medical condition or if it is a work-related incident, the individual insurance policy may have provision for dental implants.
Dental Implants Las Vegas
If you are considering dental implants, contact Dr. Medina, a full service dentist in Las Vegas who specializes in dental implants, for more information and learn how dental implants can turn your smile into the healthy, vibrant look you deserve.
Dr. Medina is a Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS). Advanced General Dentistry, with a practice in Las Vegas Nevada since 1988. He offers general and family dentistry, with a specialization in cosmetic and restorative dental services.