“I Lost a Tooth… Is a Dental Implant Right for Me?”
What Are Dental Implants and How Can They Help Replace Missing Teeth?
Damaged or missing teeth are more than just a cosmetic dental issue— they can cause serious problems with the function of your mouth and jaw because of alignment changes. These changes can negatively affect the way we eat and speak. Additionally, they can make your teeth prone to unwanted shifting, cracking, or infection because of gaps or damage. This means it’s extremely important to protect your teeth and ensure your smile stays the way you want it to.
Dental implants are one of the best tooth replacement options available because they can fully replicate natural tooth structure in form and function, ensuring your smile remains healthy and complete. They work by implanting a specialized, biocompatible prosthetic into the jawbone and then attaching a fabricated crown, bridge, or denture that blends in with your natural teeth. The result is an implant that works and looks just like your natural teeth.
Don’t let damaged or missing teeth affect your health, reduce your self-confidence, and keep you from feeling like yourself when you’re at your best. At New York General Dentistry, we help patients restore their smiles and improve their health with the most modern and high-quality dental restorations.
“Dr. Chern is an outstanding dentist. I went to her a few months ago terrified of dental work and embarrassed by my oral health. After a few appointments where she walked me through each procedure I am on my way to great oral health, and I’m no longer nervous walking in the door. Thank you, Dr. Chern!”– Britney L.
Benefits of Dental Implants
Dental implants are virtually permanent with the right care, meaning they’re extremely durable. Implants can function just like your normal teeth so you don’t need to worry about chipping or cracking your implants with regular eating. This makes them a great long-term investment in your dental health!
Natural Look and Feel
Dental implants are extremely sophisticated and can mimic the natural look and feel of real teeth. A skilled and experienced dentist can make sure your implants are perfectly matched and blend in with your normal teeth so it fits right in. You can feel confident that no one will notice a difference when you smile.
Dental implants are one of the most effective ways to restore your smile since they integrate directly into your jawbone and aren’t susceptible to factors like decay or cavities. With a dental implant that is easy to care for, you can restore the fit and function of your bite.
“I’m always nervous going to the dentist and Dr. Chern made me feel so comfortable. She explained everything to me thoroughly and I walked away understanding exactly what’s going on with my teeth. I’m so happy to have found her and look forward to future visits. Thank you Dr. Chern!”– Alicia C.
The Dental Implant Treatment Process and What to Expect
Your First Appointment (60-90 minutes)
- During this appointment, Dr. Chern will discuss your options and examine your teeth for any concerns. If there are factors like shifting, decay, or infection, these will need to be addressed first.
- You’ll discuss your dental health history and Dr. Chern will take photographs of your face and teeth. This will give us a baseline to create your implant as well as help us track your progress going forward.
- During this appointment, Dr. Chern will explain the implant procedure and make sure it’s a good fit for your needs. This is a great time to ask questions and ensure you know what to expect with the implant process.
Your Second Appointment (45-60 minutes)
- You’ll be given anesthesia during this appointment so that you’re completely comfortable. This is usually either local anesthesia or IV sedation based on your unique procedure.
- Once you’re relaxed and ready, the implant prosthetic will be carefully placed into the jawbone through an incision in the gum where your teeth are missing. Most people experience less pain and discomfort than they expect during this step.
- After the implant socket is placed, you’ll be sent home to recover while it heals and integrates into the bone over the course of 3-6 months. Most people return to work within a day or so of placement, and you can manage discomfort with some over-the-counter medications.
Your Third and Fourth Appointment (30-45 minutes)
- At this appointment, Dr. Chern will evaluate your implant socket and take impressions and scans for the lab to create your dental restoration.
- A dental crown, bridge, or denture will be placed on the dental implant.
- Dr. Chern will check it for proper fit, function, and aesthetics.
Your Final Appointment (30-45 minutes)
During this appointment, Dr. Chern will make sure that your mouth is adjusting well to the new implant and restoration. She will go over all aspects of maintenance and care. Once the implant is in place, it will remain there for the long-term, meaning it will essentially be a part of your mouth. Dr. Cherm may also evaluate you for an occlusal splint or night guard. The splint helps maintain the longevity of the implant by equalizing the forces along with the prosthetic.
Caring For Your Dental Implants
It’s extremely important to care for your implants as you would any other teeth. That being said, make sure to follow these steps to ensure your implants last for years to come:
- Eat a healthy diet (cut back on sweets and soft drinks)
- See your dentist regularly (every 4-6 months) for hygiene appointments
- Brush your teeth twice daily for 2 minutes with a soft or electric toothbrush
- Floss every day or use a water flosser (Waterpik)
- Always clean between the teeth and around the dental implant
What is the difference between dental implants and mini implants?
The difference between regular dental implants and mini implants is that mini implants are about half the diameter of traditional ones.
What is the alternative to dental implants?
A dental bridge is an alternative to a dental implant to replace a missing tooth.
Who is not suitable for dental implants?
There are several medical conditions which may contribute to implant failure and smoking is a contra-indication to proper healing.
Who is a candidate for dental implants?
Most people are candidates for dental implants.
What is a mini dental implant?
A mini implant is a type of dental implant which is half the diameter of a traditional implant.
What causes dental implants to loosen?
Loosening of dental implants can be caused by poor bone integration, loose hardware or infection.
How many different dental implants are there?
There are countless brands of implants. There are ceramic and titanium implant types on the market.
How long does a dental implant last?
If proper ly maintained, a dental implant can last forever.
Should I get a bridge or implant?
The choice is a personal preference and should be discussed with your dentist. A dental bridge is a faster process than the implant process.
What are full denture implants?
When a patient loses all their teeth, implants can be placed to anchor a denture or dental prosthetic.
How do you take care of a full mouth of dental implants?
It is important to maintain excellent oral care and see your dentist for routine cleanings 2-3 times a year.
Is tooth extraction worse than implant?
Extractions and implant placement are both surgical treatments. One is not necessarily worse than another.
Is a dental implant considered oral surgery?
A dental implant is considered oral surgery.
How do I prepare for dental implants?
You should eat and stay hydrated prior to the procedure.
Do mini dental implants last?
When placed properly, mini implants can last comparably to regular dental implants.
Do gums grow around implants?
Gum tissue will grow around an implant as it would a tooth if the proper amount of bone is present.
Can your mouth reject an implant?
An implant can fail, rejection of the dental alloy or ceramic is rare.
Can you get full mouth dental implants?
An implant is not necessary to replace each tooth in the mouth. Often 8 implants on the top and 6 implants on the bottom will restore function.
Are dental implants safe for seniors?
Dental implants are very safe for seniors.
Can I drive home after dental implant surgery?
You can drive home after dental surgery if you had only local anesthesia.
Can I get a dental implant years after extraction?
A dental implant can be performed anytime after extractions. Grafting may be necessary if bone has resorbed.
Can a dental implant be done in one day?
The surgical component can be done in one day but the final crown must be placed after proper healing and bone integration has occured.
Can a tooth implant get infected?
An implant can get infected if not cleaned or maintained properly.
Can implants be done with bone loss?
An implant can be done with bone loss. An additional grafting procedure may be necessary to replace the bone.
Can all teeth be replaced with implants?
All teeth in the mouth can be replaced with a dental implant.
Can you get a temporary tooth while waiting for an implant?
Various kinds of temporaries can be used to fill the space during implant healing. Removable and fixed prosthetics are available.
Do they sedate you for dental implants?
You have the option to be sedated for dental implant surgery.
Do tooth implants feel real?
A dental implant can look and feel just like a regular tooth.
Does food get under dental implants?
Food can get under a dental implant crown as it would around a regular tooth.
How are dental implants fitted?
A drill is used to make a hole in the bone and the dental implant is tapped into place.
What Makes Our Office the Right Fit For Your Dental Needs?
Dr. Chern will take the time to learn your oral health goals. Together, you’ll decide if a dental implant is right for you and will create the ideal treatment plan to restore your smile with our best options.
Our Midtown East office is thoughtfully designed to help you feel at ease and relaxed during treatment. We want you to feel your very best when you visit the dentist so you can achieve the smile that’s best for you.
New York General Dentistry offers the latest in high-tech zirconia and titanium tooth implant procedures. You’ll love our attention to detail and care throughout the entire process.
Meet With Dr. Chern &
Her Manhattan Team
To learn more about dental implants and your treatment options, contact our office for an appointment by calling or filling out our online form. Dr. Inna Chern and our team will personally work with you to plan your best treatment options and restore the function and beauty of your smile.