Why am I being referred to a Periodontist?

Your dentist has determined that your condition warrants the treatment by a specialist in Implant Surgery. Your dentist and periodontist work together to assure you receive the highest level of care. Certain advanced conditions require the expertise of a specialist. Your periodontist will be in direct contact with your dentist during your treatment to keep him/her informed of your progress.

What are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are artificial replacements for a lost tooth root. They are small screws made of titanium, and are delicately placed into the jawbone, in order to help retain or support a crown or bridge. They can also provide the support to anchor a removable prosthesis such as a complete or partial denture.

Are dental implants right for me?

If you are missing one or more teeth and would like to replace that missing tooth in the most conservative manner, then dental implants may be right for you. Dental implants can restore your ability to eat, speak and smile with comfort and confidence. In comparison to alternative treatment options for the replacement of missing teeth, dental implants very often are the most predictable and longest lasting. Your periodontist is an expert in implant dentistry and will perform an exam to determine if implants are right for you.

What can I expect from the process?

In order to determine the best course of action for your particular dental problem, an initial examination is necessary with appropriate x-ray images, for a thorough evaluation and assessment of your needs. Your periodontist works as a team with your dentist and then coordinates your care. Surgery when necessary is usually minimally invasive and involves little to no pain. When appropriate you may also be sedated for increased comfort during the procedure.

Is implant surgery painful? The majority of patients report only a minor degree of swelling and discomfort following surgery. An over the counter pain medication is sometimes all that is needed following minor implant surgery.

Can an implant fail or be rejected?

Long term survival data of dental implants suggests success rates between 85%-99%. The more training, skill and experience the surgeon has, the better the survival rates. In addition, long term implant survival is dependent on proper implant care. A periodontist is a residency trained specialist in implant surgery and predictably achieves very high success rates.

How do I take care of implants?

Just like natural teeth, brushing, flossing and regular dental visits are essential for the long term success of dental implants. Your periodontist, along with your dentist, will provide the long term maintenance for your implants so they can last a lifetime.

How long do dental implants last?

Although individual results will vary, with proper long term care which includes daily brushing and flossing and regular dental cleanings with a hygienist skilled in proper dental implant maintenance, you implants could last a lifetime.

How much does a dental implant cost?

Costs vary with the individual circumstance. The cost of an implant ranges depending on your particular needs. The cost of a dental implant to replace a single missing tooth, is often similar to alternative options, including fixed bridgework. Your periodontist may provide long term financing, often with no interest making all treatment attainable for just about every budget. Given the long term survival rates of implants compared with alternative tooth replacement options, in the long run an implant is often the least expensive option.

Dental Implant Glossary of Terms