Complete Your Smile, Enhance Your Life
Dental implants restore missing or failing teeth with long-lasting, natural-looking results. They help restore your ability to eat and smile with confidence again while actively improving your oral health. The oral surgeons at Whitewater Oral Surgery Group, specialize in dental implant-based tooth restorations, allowing patients to achieve a complete and healthy smile. Contact us today for a consultation to explore your tooth replacement options. Dr. Nelson, Dr. Hastings, and Dr. Kempers look forward to restoring your smile and improving your oral health.
Benefits of Dental Implants
Improve oral health
Replacing a missing tooth is important to prevent bone loss, bite alignment issues, dental shifting, bacteria buildup in the tooth socket, and more.
Dental implants are designed to be long-term solutions. You can make their implants last as long as possible by practicing good oral hygiene and seeing your dentist regularly.
Eat your favorite foods
Foods that are off-limits to patients with dentures or missing teeth can be eaten with dental implants. You can enjoy steak, corn on the cob, apples, nuts, and more.
Preserve facial balance
Since the implant post fuses with the jaw bone, facial aesthetics are better protected than with other restoration solutions, like removable bridges or dentures.
Types of Dental Implants We Offer
Single Tooth Implants
One dental implant replaces one missing or failing tooth. You can have a dental implant placed anywhere in your mouth where you are in need of tooth replacement.
Traditional bridges require healthy teeth to be shaved down to fit the prosthesis. When dental implants support a bridge, your natural teeth are protected. Dental implants fuse to the jaw bone, providing stimulation to the jaw bone that traditional bridges do not.
Our skilled surgeons can place a dental implant post at the same appointment as a tooth extraction, provided there is enough bone to support the implant. This reduces the total number of procedures required to replace the tooth.
Patients with many missing teeth may qualify for full-arch restoration, a procedure that uses dental implants to support a permanent denture in one or both arches. Learn more about full-arch restoration.
Patients who are concerned about the metal used in traditional dental implants or have a metal allergy may find ceramic implants are the right tooth restoration option for them. Ceramic implants, also known as zirconia implants, are a metal-free dental implant. Traditional dental implants are made from titanium, which can cause an allergic reaction in some patients. Ceramic implants are inserted the same way as a traditional dental implant and offer a natural look and function.
To place a dental implant successfully, there must be enough bone in the jaw to support it. However, the bone that separates the maxillary sinus from the upper teeth tends to be very thin, so traditional dental implant placement may not be possible. Zygomatic implants are extra-long implants that are anchored into the zygomatic bone. Used in the United States for over two decades, zygomatic implants provide safe and predictable results.
How Much Do Dental Implants Cost?
During your consultation, your oral surgeon will complete an oral exam, review or order X-rays or other digital imaging, and discuss your options for anesthesia. Factors such as number and type of implants, choice of anesthesia, if you require bone grafting, and more will determine the final cost of dental implant treatment. Contact us for a consultation and to receive a personalized treatment plan with a cost estimate.
Dental Implants or Dentures, Which Is a Better Choice for Me?
Removable dentures and dental implants are both options for replacement teeth, but they have many differences. You can choose between complete dentures or removable partial dentures to cosmetically restore teeth and gums. Complete dentures rest on the gums and replace a full arch of teeth, while partial dentures fill in gaps where teeth are missing.
Dentures are often less expensive than dental implants and no surgery is required. However, you must replace dentures every few years. Many patients find dentures uncomfortable and feel embarrassed when it’s time to remove their teeth during meals or brushing. Dentures do not prevent bone loss and can make it difficult to chew and speak.
A dental implant will look and feel like a natural tooth, making it easy to chew and speak normally. With proper dental care, dental implants can last a lifetime. Many patients who wear dentures switch to dental implants because of their comfort, convenience, and functionality.
How Do Dental Implants Reduce or Stop Bone Loss?
The roots of your teeth stimulate the jaw bone during chewing, which keeps the bone strong and healthy. When tooth loss occurs, there is nothing to stimulate the bone in that area, often leading to deterioration.
A dental implant post acts as an artificial tooth root and is embedded into the jaw bone. This post stimulates the jaw in the same way as a natural tooth root, preventing bone loss and preserving facial structure. Dental implants are the only tooth replacement option that prevents bone loss.
Dental Implant Surgery—What to Expect
Dental implant treatment requires several visits over several months to complete. Prior to your surgery, we will take 3D scans of your mouth and discuss your options for anesthesia. We offer a variety of choices to ensure you remain as comfortable as possible, but most patients undergo IV sedation for this procedure.
During the surgery, your oral surgeon will make an incision in the gum tissue and place the implant post. After the implant is placed, we will insert sutures as needed and may place a temporary crown to wear while you heal. Over the next few months, the post will fuse to your jaw bone. You will return for a second surgical visit to expose the post and attach the connective abutment if this was not done previously. Once fully healed, your restorative dentist will place your custom-made final crown, completing your treatment.
We will provide you with detailed instructions to follow before and after your implant placement. Good oral hygiene and regular dental checkups will contribute to the success of your replacement tooth or teeth.
Dental Implant Dentistry
Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are the most qualified dental specialists to place dental implants. A general dentist is likely the first to determine that a dental implant is needed during a routine dental visit. Some dentists are trained to place dental implants, but oral surgeons receive many additional years of training.
Dr. Nelson, Dr. Hastings, and Dr. Kempers are dual-degree, board-certified oral and maxillofacial surgery experts who approach every case with both dental and medical expertise. Each of our offices are equipped with advanced 3D imaging and surgical technology for precise diagnosing, detailed treatment planning, and predictable outcomes. At Whitewater Oral Surgery Group, we are trusted specialists in implant dentistry who can restore your smile, oral health, and confidence.
Types of Anesthesia
Whitewater Oral Surgery Group uses three main types of anesthesia:
Local anesthesia is administered directly to the surgical site and only affects the local area. It is commonly used for minor procedures, such as simple dental extractions or small soft tissue biopsies.
Nitrous oxide is also known as laughing gas and is a mild sedative inhaled through a mask over the mouth and nose. It is often used in conjunction with local anesthesia. The effects of the gas will dissipate after breathing some oxygen for a few minutes after the procedure.
IV sedation is administered into the patient’s vein. This type of sedation is most commonly used during impacted wisdom teeth extraction, extensive dental implant surgery, or any surgical procedure that may be more complex in nature.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does the dental implant procedure take?
A single dental implant can be placed in as little as 30 minutes. A procedure involving multiple dental implants will take longer, sometimes 1–2 hours per implant.
Who is not a good candidate for dental implants?
Patients with severe gum disease, extensive jaw bone loss, or suppressed immune systems may not qualify for dental implants. Periodontal disease must be treated and under control in order to receive implants. Generally, if you are healthy enough to undergo a general surgical procedure and you have enough jaw bone, you are likely a candidate for dental implants.
Is dental implant surgery painful?
Some level of discomfort following any type of surgery is normal and expected. We will use the appropriate type of anesthesia to ensure a comfortable surgical experience. We often use IV sedation for dental implant surgery. With IV sedation, you will be semi-conscious, unable to feel discomfort. Many patients wake up when the sedation wears off with no memory of the procedure.
What is recovery like?
Recovery varies from patient to patient. Most patients resume normal activities a few days following surgery. To encourage a smooth recovery and reduce the risk of complications, we send every patient home with post-operative instructions.