One of our primary objectives at Weninger Dentistry is to create an atmosphere in which our patients are comfortable asking both the easy and the hard questions. We seek to eradicate the fear associated with procedures like dental implants through patient education.
Let’s begin with this Dental Implant Consumer Guide on how to select the right dentist.
Expect an In-Depth Implant Consultation
In today’s technological age, it can be tempting to rely on dental information found online or over the phone. Unfortunately, simply knowing the ins and outs of implant technology will not guarantee success. The success of a dental implant requires an in-depth oral exam, x-rays, medical history, and current behaviors/habits. It is a good sign when your dentist requires a consultation before agreeing to do an implant. Just be sure to discuss whether the consultation is free, so you aren’t surprised by a fee.
The right dentist will look for:
- Sufficient bone structure in the jaw to fuse (osseointegrate) with the implant.
- Gum health in relation to gum disease, health conditions, or medications.
- Solid dental hygiene routines.
- Behaviors and habits that indirectly affect implant success by affecting the teeth and gums.
Does the Dentist Take Time to Answer Questions?
Once your dentist has thoroughly explained what happens during the dental implant process, they should be open to answering any questions you may have about dental implants. Besides the usual information about how implant surgery works, now is the time for you to ask about average healing times and additional procedures that may be required.
Does Your Dentist Have the Proper Training, Skills, & Experience?
Dentists go through additional training to learn how to perform successful dental implant surgery. It is not an insult to ask a dentist how many successful implants they have placed. As the patient, you will want to know if the dental implant system being used comes straight from the manufacturer. Find out which brands your provider uses and what that brand is made from.
Are the Budgeting & Financing Options Clear?
Weninger Dentistry believes in transparency. If your dentist does not want to discuss the full price of the dental implant, you may be shocked when the final bill arrives. A quality practice will get creative to make a dental implant possible for most patients. It is also a good time to compare the costs of different types of tooth replacements. A traditional bridge and partial or full dentures are still viable options for many people.
Budgets can be thrown awry if the need for additional services arises. Be sure to ask up front about how much related procedures cost. You will want to know if there are financing options available to cover costs not otherwise covered by insurance.
How Do I Know if the Implant is Successful?
Osseointegration is the term that describes how the implant fuses with the bone. Once healing is complete, you won’t feel anything out of the ordinary. An implant is considered successful if it heals properly and fuses with the surrounding jaw bone. A fully healed implant is often stronger than the natural tooth it replaced.
The team at Weninger Dentistry encourages you to take care of your implants the same way you care for natural teeth. Brush at least twice a day and floss once. Don’t forget to schedule regular check-ups to monitor implants and clean teeth to prevent tartar buildup and decay.