Don’t let anyone tell you dental implants aren’t a viable option. I’m not sure why or if anyone has ever told you that in the first place, but dental implants are a legitimate avenue when you’re faced with tooth decay to the extent of losing a tooth. Sometimes this decay results from injury, but maybe you’ve had a bad bout with periodontal disease. This hasn’t always been available, so this is an option that dentists are now able to introduce to patients. For a long time, the only option for those who were missing teeth was either dentures or bridges, but dental implants are legitimate replacement tooth roots.
So, the one thing that may sometimes worry patients who are considering getting dental implants is the fact that surgery is sometimes required. Surgery is, of course, a word that carries a lot of baggage for people. Fear not, though. It’s a very low-risk surgery, and the rate of success for dental implant surgery is approximately 98%. Those who take proper care of their implants can keep them a lifetime, too, which means they’re definitely getting their money’s worth.
Viable Candidates for Dental Implants
For the most part, just about anyone qualifies as healthy enough for dental implant surgery. In essence, the procedure amounts to little more than dental extraction, which is routine for a dentist in and of itself, and the alternative is oral surgery. Patients whose gums are healthy with the requisite bone to which the implant can be attached should have no problems. Good oral hygiene is a must, though, and the patient has to be prepared to make sure that their dental visits are regularly scheduled twice a year as dentists commonly recommend.
Smokers sometimes run into a few complications because they need an individual evaluation. Similarly, patients who have uncontrollable chronic disorders have to be admitted on a case-by-case basis via the same individual evaluations in advance of any procedures. Those uncontrollable chronic disorders would be something like heart disease or diabetes.
Insurance for Dental Implants
For the most part, this is not something that dental insurance will cover for you, but this can likely be attributed to the fact that dental implants are still such a new phenomenon. You can likely expect more help from insurance companies on this front in the future eventually. In the meantime, you may be able to find coverage under your medical plan depending on how many provisions are included in it and depending on the cause of the tooth loss. This is yet another case-by-case thing for which you’ll probably need to confer with both your dentist and your insurer.
You’ll have to start by organizing an individualized treatment plan that speaks directly to your personal needs and is lain out by multiple professionals who have training in restorative dentistry. Having several professionals on task gives you coordinated dental care that focuses on specifically the best implant plan for your oral situation. The tooth root implant is essentially a titanium post fixed into the bone socket of a missing tooth. The jawbone heals around this implanted post after the procedure, which is how it is so securely anchored to the jaw. This healing process lasts no more than three months but can complete in half that time.
After the implant is bonded to the jaw, you’ll have an abutment attached to the aforementioned post in order to hold the new tooth. This abutment is just a connector post. Your dentist actually makes impressions of your teeth in order to create the new one, and he or she will also model your bite so as to make sure that the new tooth fits well with your normal bite as opposed to hindering the ability to get your tops and bottoms to match up the right way or reach as far as usual. All of these things are taken into consideration, so you should have little to nothing to worry about.