Frequently Asked Questions
Oral and Facial Surgery Houston, TX
How Many Dental Implants Do I Need?
A single crown is used to replace one missing tooth – therefore as a general rule each prosthetic tooth or crown attaches to its own implant. ONE IMPLANT REPLACES ONE MISSING TOOTH. A partial prosthesis (fixed bridge) can replace two or more teeth and may require only two or three implants depending of the number of missing teeth. A complete denture replaces all the teeth in your upper or lower jaw. We usually place a minimum of 2 and maximum of 8 implants for complete upper or lower jaw tooth replacement. The number of implants varies depending upon which type of prosthesis is recommended and right for you. A removable prosthesis (over denture) attaches to a bar or ball in socket attachments, whereas a fixed one is permanent and can only be removed by the dentist.
How Do I Know If I Am A Candidate For Dental Implants?
Dental Implants require only two things; Adequate quantity of bone at the time of placement and compliance by patients with instructions and proper follow up care. Most patients then are candidates for implants. Only very few medical and dental conditions would make a person not suitable for implant surgery. If you are considering implants, your mouth must be examined thoroughly and your medical and dental history reviewed. If you mouth is not ideal for implants, there are ways of optimizing it thus improving outcome and predictability. (See bone grafting section)
Are Dental Implants Covered By Insurance?
Most dental and medical insurance companies do not cover the implant itself since it is still viewed as a cosmetic procedure. However, some of the implant related procedures like bone grafting and tissue regeneration are covered by some plans. Our insurance specialists will be happy to file pre treatment plan to your insurance company whenever necessary. We also offer easy outside financing for your convenience many times at 0% interest to you.
Can Dental Implants Be Placed At The Same Time A Tooth Is Extracted?
Surgical Advances & Innovations
Single Stage Implant Surgery
Using the most recent advances in dental implant technology, Dr. Moya is able to place single stage implants. The initial procedure is identical to the traditional two stage surgery, however, these implants do not require a second procedure to uncover them. The temporary cap or abutment is placed immediately and therefore sticks out of the gum tissue. These implants require still a minimum of eight to twelve weeks of healing time before placing artificial teeth on them. The main advantage is patients only go through ONE surgical procedure. It is not indicated or right for every patient since it requires particular characteristics and quality of bone as well as a patient that is meticulous and committed to maintaining excellent oral hygiene.
Simultaneous Implants & Immediate Loading
There are certain situations in which dental implants can be placed at the same time a tooth is lost further minimizing the number of surgical procedures. Advances in dental implant technology have made it possible in particular cases, to extract teeth, place implants, and place a temporary tooth or crown over them. If the crown or temporary tooth is placed at the same time with the implant, the process is called “immediate loading.” The patient functions and chews on the implant the day it was placed. This greatly simplifies the surgical process, howvever it is limited to selected cases.
Do Dental Implants Need Special Care And How Long Do They Last?
Once the implants are in place, they will serve you well for many years if you take care of them and keep your mouth healthy. This means taking the time for good oral hygiene (brushing and flossing) and keeping regular appointments with your dental specialists. Implants that are cared for properly and maintained properly will last indefinitely.
Now that you have learned about dental implants, you finally realize there is a way to improve your life. When you lose several teeth – whether it’s a new situation or something you have lived with for years – chances are you have never become fully accustomed to losing such a vital part of yourself. Dental implants can be your doorway to renewed self-confidence and peace of mind. Please feel free to contact our office if you should have any other questions or wish to schedule your implant consultation with Dr. Moya.