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Dental Implants

A dental implant is a long-lasting tooth replacement option that can replace 1 or more missing teeth with a realistic, fully functioning artificial one.

Dental Implants

Who can benefit from dental implants?

If you are missing a single tooth or need to have multiple teeth replaced, dental implants are one of the best restorative solutions available. Whether you need a single replacement tooth, or multiple implants to support a bridge or full fixed denture, they are highly recommended as a secure, long-term solution for tooth replacement. They are designed to provide replacement teeth that function, look, and feel like natural teeth. Patients in Modesto, CA, who have lost teeth or have failing teeth can regain the ability to eat their favorite foods again and chew with confidence. Dental implant patients at our trusted practice will be able to smile proudly knowing that their new teeth look and function just like healthy, natural teeth. Drs. Baker, Barber, and Springer are trusted experts in dental implant placement.

What are dental implants?

They are a 3-part tooth restoration option that consists of a medical-grade and biocompatible titanium screw (also known as a post), which is inserted into the jaw to replace the missing tooth root, a custom-made prosthetic crown, and a connector piece called an abutment that securely connects the implant screw to the crown. Unlike removable dentures and fixed bridges, the implant screws are permanently anchored in the jaw bone through a process called osteointegration, providing a sturdy foundation for a custom-made prosthetic tooth.

The 3 parts are

  • The screw (or post). Dental implants use a medical-grade titanium screw which is surgically inserted into the bone beneath the gums to provide a permanent replacement root on which to place your new crown.
  • The prosthetic crown. The crown is fabricated by your restorative dentist to look just like a natural tooth and blends seamlessly with the rest of the teeth in your mouth. Crowns are usually made of durable porcelain.
  • The abutment. This piece connects your custom crown to the screw for a completely secure tooth restoration.

In some cases, this restoration method can also be used to attach permanent fixed bridges or dentures to replace missing teeth, multiple teeth, or even a full arch of teeth.

Am I a candidate?

Multiple considerations help determine candidacy. During your initial consultation, the experienced oral surgeons at our practice will perform a thorough oral examination, review your medical history, and take X-rays to determine if you are a candidate. For the new replacement teeth to successfully take hold, candidates must have proper bone density and have a strong immune system for the healing process. In all cases, successful dental implants require that you maintain excellent oral hygiene. Some implants fail because patients do not practice good oral hygiene—including flossing and brushing—following the procedure. In addition, regular cleanings by a dental professional are required to ensure the success of your new tooth or teeth. You should treat your implants with the same care as your natural teeth.

It’s possible that your oral surgeon may determine that you require an additional procedure, such as bone grafting, to achieve successful placement of dental implants. Our oral surgeons are highly trained in bone grafting procedures and will develop a treatment plan based on your unique oral health and condition. See our section on Bone Grafting (below) for more information about this innovative treatment that opens the door for dental implants to people who have lost jaw bone density.

What are the benefits?

Patients who undergo a dental implant procedure find that their tooth restoration offers a variety of benefits not offered by other forms of dental restoration. If you are considering alternative options such as removable partial dentures, fixed bridges, or full-arch dentures, you should consider this permanent and healthy solution to tooth replacement.

Implants are the optimal tooth replacement solution for the following reasons:

  • Increased stability. Unlike traditional dentures and bridges, they fuse permanently with the bone in your jaw, just like natural teeth! No inconvenient and unsightly removable parts!
  • Enhanced oral health. When they are placed, the jaw bone fuses with the screw, which deters any future bone deterioration from occurring within the jaw due to missing tooth roots or advanced periodontal disease (gum disease). Also, the success of this long-term solution does not require any of the healthy neighboring teeth to be ground down or damaged, unlike other restorations that require support from adjacent teeth to carry the burden of a bridge.
  • The ability to eat whatever you like. With traditional tooth loss solutions such as removable dentures, eating can be uncomfortable and even embarrassing. In contrast, this replacement solution functions like healthy natural teeth.
  • A beautiful new smile and improved facial aesthetics. Because they function in your mouth just like natural teeth, stimulating the jaw bone with every bite when you chew, your jaw and facial structure are maintained for a natural, healthy, youthful appearance.

If you are interested in learning more, we encourage you to contact our office at 209-527-5050. Our skilled oral and maxillofacial surgeons will be happy to meet with you for an initial consultation to discuss your needs and develop a personalized strategy for your treatment.

Dental Implants in Modesto, CA

Our trusted practice with skilled oral surgeons specializes in dental implant surgery. The practice’s comfortable and friendly atmosphere reflects a commitment to providing each patient with the highest level of care. We believe that a well-informed patient will be more at ease before their procedures, so we always welcome any questions you may have. Please give us a call at our practice if you would like to learn more about dental implants or would like to schedule your consultation with one of our surgeons.

Treatment Cost

At Greater Modesto Dental Implant & Oral Surgery Center, we offer implant treatment at costs that are competitive in the surrounding areas. We believe that everyone should have the opportunity to restore their smile, so we provide the highest-quality treatments at fair prices. We have options for financing and accept many different methods of payment.

Determining the cost of your procedure relies on several factors. The number of teeth requiring replacement, the need for additional procedures such as bone grafting to prepare the mouth for successful placement, and your insurance coverage will all contribute to the final cost of your treatment. You may have seen offers for bargain implants, but we urge you to be cautious of these claims. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are experts in placement and are the best-qualified providers to perform a thorough exam and accurately estimate the price for treatment.

Investing in Dental Implants

The cost of dental implants reflects the significant amount of value they add to patients’ lives. They are the only tooth replacement treatment that can last a lifetime while also helping to maintain your overall oral health. The benefits below are just a few of the reasons that implants are a worthy investment:

  • The unique design mimics the function and appearance of natural teeth, letting you live your life as if you never had missing teeth.
  • The placement in the jaw maintains proper oral function and prevents the bone from deteriorating.
  • They won’t slip around or fall out of the mouth, and they have been proven to have long-term success if you follow the proper care routine.

Overall, dental implants are the best solution for replacing missing teeth, and their long-term value far outweighs their cost. If you’re interested in learning more about this option for tooth restoration, we encourage you to schedule a consultation at our office. After a thorough oral examination, our team can give you an accurate estimate of the price of your treatment.

The Procedure

Placing the screw into your jaw bone requires surgery, so our patients receive a local or IV anesthetic and, if necessary, antibiotics to prevent infection following the procedure. Your unique treatment plan will depend on the number of implants being placed, whether you have bone loss and require a bone graft, and if you will require any additional procedures, such as tooth extractions. The process at our practice will usually involve 2 or 3 visits to the office over a few weeks or months. Your oral surgeon and your dentist will work as a team to complete the dental implant process.

Usually, the process goes as follows:

  • Consultation. During your consultation appointment with your oral surgeon, your condition will be reviewed, and a personalized treatment plan will be formed, including your choice of anesthesia. Imaging such as 3D scans will be taken to create custom surgical guides for your procedure.
  • Surgery. During your procedure, you will be under anesthesia, and the doctor will place the post in the bone beneath your gums. If you choose IV sedation, you will sleep comfortably during the procedure. After the surgery, the surgical site will be stitched, and you will have some time to rest and recover.
  • Recovery. After your placement, there will be a 3- to 4-month healing period while your body does the work of fusing the screw in the jaw bone to create a strong foundation for chewing hard foods. Most patients are back to their regular routines after a couple of weeks. Your dentist may make a temporary crown for you to wear during the healing period.
  • Abutment and Crown Placement. Once your surgical site has healed, and the screw is securely fused with the bone in your jaw, your oral surgeon will place the abutments. The abutments connect your new custom-built crowns to your implants. Your healthy new smile will now be ready to show off to the world!

The experienced oral and maxillofacial surgeons at Greater Modesto Dental Implant & Oral Surgery Center are experts in dental implant treatments. We look forward to scheduling your initial consultation where we will discuss your tooth replacement goals and develop a plan to restore your oral health and smile. Please feel free to call our front office to learn more about the procedure at our trusted practice.

Bone and Soft Tissue Grafting for Treatment

Some of our patients in need of dental implants face a challenge because the area of their jaw bone where the implant will be inserted has deteriorated due to prolonged tooth loss, gum disease, or other factors. Most commonly, our patients who have been missing a tooth or several teeth for an extended period will need a bone grafting procedure for success.

The grafts of bone used in bone augmentation procedures can usually be taken from inside the mouth, chin, jaw, or in rarer cases, the hip or knee. On occasion, a synthetic bone graft substitute can also be used to restore the affected area of the surgical site. There are a variety of different bone and soft tissue grafting treatments available to meet each patient’s specific needs, including

  • Ridge Augmentation. This more complex form of bone grafting may be necessary when the alveolar ridge bone, a special type of bone surrounding and supporting teeth, begins to deteriorate or lose density due to natural breakdown. A ridge expansion can be performed to widen or heighten the jaw to increase the bone density where implants will be placed. During ridge expansion, the bony ridge of the jaw is split surgically, and bone graft material is inserted.
  • Sinus Lift. When you lose a tooth in the upper jaw, it is often very difficult to replace them because there is not enough bone present above the upper jaw near the sinus cavity. Our surgical team can perform a sinus lift procedure in which the oral surgeon lifts the sinus membrane, and a bone graft is placed below the lifted membrane. This graft will naturally integrate with the bone in the jaw over several months. Once the graft has integrated, dental implants can be placed.
  • Soft Tissue Grafts. Some abnormalities, as well as advanced gum disease, may require the application of soft tissue grafts. Such procedures can be used to cover an exposed root or correct uneven gum lines. Soft tissue grafts are small pieces of tissue taken from other areas and surgically implanted in the affected area. This helps to stop bone loss and the recession of gums and even helps reduce pain-causing root sensitivity.

If you are considering tooth replacement, bone grafting may be necessary to ensure that your implants are successful and long-lasting. Drs. Baker, Barber, and Springer are happy to discuss your bone grafting options and develop a treatment plan that restores your oral health and smile.

FAQ

Am I a candidate?

If you are healthy enough to undergo minor dental surgeries like tooth extractions, and you are interested in a healthy, permanent, and cost-effective solution to your missing or failing teeth, you may be a candidate for dental implants. Schedule an appointment with one of our skilled oral and maxillofacial surgeons to find out if they are the best tooth restoration option for you.

How long is the recovery period?

Each patient’s recovery time will differ depending on their procedure and their body’s healing abilities. Typically, dental implants take between 3 and 6 months to heal well enough for full chewing ability. Most patients are back to their normal routines just a few days after the procedure, although a diet of soft foods may be required for some time. You will receive detailed post-operative instructions from our doctors after your surgery. Click here to review them online.

Will there be pain associated with the procedure?

Once your surgical sites have healed, your new teeth will feel nearly identical to natural, healthy teeth. While patients may experience some discomfort the first few days after surgery, your oral surgeon should provide you with a prescription for pain medication to relieve any discomfort.

Where can I find dental implants near me?

Our practice offers high-quality dental implant procedures from the comfort of our office in Modesto, CA. Drs. Baker, Barber, and Springer are highly experienced oral and maxillofacial surgeons with extensive training.

Other questions?

If you have other questions about the procedures, the recovery period, or any of the other procedures we offer, feel free to contact our office.

Implant Care Instructions

The success of your treatment requires that you pay close attention to both our pre- and post-operative instructions before your procedure to make sure your recovery goes as smoothly as possible, and remember, like any tooth replacement restoration, implants require ongoing diligent oral hygiene and proper care to ensure they last as long as possible.

Pre-Operative Instructions

  • You may not have anything to eat or drink (including water) for 6 hours before the appointment. For morning surgery, no food or liquids after midnight the night before surgery.
  • No smoking at least 12 hours before surgery. Ideally, cut down or stop smoking as soon as possible before the day of surgery.
  • A responsible adult must accompany the patient to the office, remain in the office during the procedure, and drive the patient home.
  • Plan to rest for the remainder of the surgery day. The patient should not drive a vehicle or operate any machinery for 24 hours following the anesthesia experience.
  • Please wear loose-fitting clothing with sleeves that can be rolled up past the elbow and low-heeled shoes.
  • Contact lenses, jewelry, and dentures must be removed at the time of surgery.
  • Do not wear lipstick, excessive makeup, or nail polish on the day of surgery.
  • If you have an illness such as a cold, sore throat, stomach or bowel upset, please notify the office.
  • If you take routine oral medications, please check with your doctor before your surgical date for instructions.
  • The use of alcohol or recreational drugs can have an adverse effect on the anesthesia medications that we use. Please discontinue the use of such for at least 72 hours before your procedure.
  • If you were prescribed medications by your doctor, please closely follow the instructions for their use.
  • Women, please note: Some antibiotics may interfere with the effectiveness of your birth control pills. Please check with your pharmacist.

    Click here for our pre-operative instructions and video.

    Post-Operative Instructions

    • Do NOT disturb the wound. Avoid spitting or touching the wound for a few days after surgery. There may be a metal cap slightly protruding through the gum tissue.
    • Some bleeding or redness is normal for 24 hours. Excessive bleeding (your mouth fills up rapidly with blood) can be controlled by biting on a gauze pad placed directly on the bleeding wound for 30 minutes. If bleeding continues, please call the office for further instructions.
    • Swelling is a normal occurrence after surgery. To minimize swelling, apply an ice bag or a plastic bag or towel filled with ice on the cheek in the area of surgery. Apply the ice continuously, as much as possible, for the first 36 hours.
    • Drink plenty of fluids. Avoid hot liquids or food. Soft food and liquids can be eaten on the day of surgery. You may return to a normal diet 1–2 days after surgery unless otherwise directed.
    • Warm saltwater rinses can be made by mixing ½ teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water and should be used at least 4–5 times a day, especially after meals.
    • Brushing your teeth and the healing abutments is no problem. Be gentle at first when you are brushing the surgical areas.
    • Keep physical activities to a minimum for several days following surgery. Avoid bending over, heavy lifting, or strain. Keep in mind that you are probably not taking normal nourishment. This may weaken you and further limit your ability to exercise.
    • Click here for our post-operative instructions and video. This video will cover specific important information regarding proper post-surgical care for dental implants. It is imperative that you follow the instructions listed carefully, to maximize your healing and improve the long-term outcome of your dental implant(s).

      Thank you for trusting our surgeons in Modesto, CA, with restoring your smile. Always feel free to contact us with any questions. Our friendly team is here to help you feel at ease about your treatment.