Dental implants are prosthetic teeth that replace the full root and crown of missing, damaged, or decayed teeth. The implant “root” is a screw made of strong titanium that’s surgically implanted under the gums, where it fuses with your jawbone. Attached to the screw is an abutment, which supports a single prosthetic crown or multiple crowns that are made of porcelain or zirconium for durability and a natural-looking appearance.
Dental implants can replace a single tooth, multiple teeth, or a full mouth of teeth. One surgically inserted implant can support a single crown.
1.The first step in the dental implant process is a thorough exam to plan exactly where the implants will go, and to remove damaged or decayed teeth as needed.
2. The dental implant surgery itself is split into two sessions: the first will involve implanting the titanium screws into the jawbone. Your dentist will attach a temporary abutment and stitch the gums closed over the implant. Stitches will be removed seven to ten days afterward.
3. The next portion of the surgery will have to wait until the first surgery is completely healed and the titanium screws are successfully fused to your jawbone. This can take four to six months. During the second surgical session, the dentist will make a small cut in the gums, remove the temporary abutment, and replace it with a healing cap that supports proper healing of the gum tissue.
4. Once your gums heal (10-14 days later), your dentist will make impressions of your mouth and remaining teeth to create customized prosthetic crowns.
5. While you wait for your permanent crowns, you will be provided with temporary crowns that will look and function like normal teeth. As soon as your permanent crowns are ready, we’ll replace the temporary ones, and you’ll be able enjoy your favorite foods and smile and laugh freely.
Dr. Hage, DDS, MIADI, is a graduate of the acclaimed Loma Linda School of Dentistry and a master of the prestigious International Academy of Dental Implantology, where he serves as a faculty member teaching and mentoring the next generation of dentists.
Dr. Hage specializes in dental implants with an intense focus on quality and state-of-the-art technology. Embracing innovation such as digital procedure planning and 3D printing to fabricate precise surgical guides has allowed Dr. Hage to provide virtually pain-free implant procedures with complication rates well below the industry standard.
Dr. Hage also specializes in veneers and Invisalign treatment and works closely with the expert team at Smile Designers Dentistry to help patients address a full range of oral health and cosmetic dental needs.
Dental implants have a high success rate, but a very small percentage of implants do fail. Gum disease, insufficient jawbone, and smoking are three of the main reasons for failure of dental implants. As with any major surgery, dental implant surgery comes with the standard risk of infection. There is also a risk of sinus problems when implants are improperly placed in the upper jaw, which is why it’s crucial to choose a professional, experienced dental implant expert to perform the surgery.
Dental implant costs vary depending on the dentist and sometimes regional factors, but in general a single implant costs around $3,000-$4,500, including the surgery and all components.
For full-mouth or full-arch dental implants, the cost can run from $12,000-$25,000.
Even though dental implants are stronger and last longer than other tooth replacement options, dental insurance policies consider them an “elective” procedure and will not usually cover the costs. However, some insurance policies may cover the cost of the prosthetic crown, at a rate comparable to covering regular dental crowns.
Dental implants can restore your confidence as well as your smile. If you’re ready to replace your missing teeth and set your smile free, call Smile Designers at (619) 222-6000 to schedule a consultation today. We serve San Diego.