Dental Implants – Houston, TX
Building Stronger Smiles
Dental implants have become one of the most popular options among dentists and patients when it comes to replacing missing teeth, with 5 million new implants being placed each year. It’s easy to see why: they offer many advantages that traditional dentures and bridges simply don’t have, and they look and feel natural. Call Dr. Palmer today if you’ve lost a tooth or expect to lose a tooth soon; after an examination, he can start creating a plan to rebuild your new and improved smile with dental implants in Houston, TX!
Why Choose Palmer Dental Group of Houston for Dental Implants?
- Implant Placement & Restoration Under One Roof
- State-of-the-Art Dental Office
- A Dentist That Makes Your Comfort a Priority
What Is a Dental Implant?
The actual replacement tooth will be a crown, a bridge, or dentures; the implant itself will serve as a new tooth root. Implants are titanium posts that can have a diameter as small as 3.5 millimeters. Unlike traditional restorations that sit on the gums or are supported by natural teeth, implants are inserted directly into the jaw and essentially become part of the bone. As a result, your new teeth will be held firmly in place and can be trusted to never shift.
Benefits of Dental Implants
Did you know there are currently more than 3 million people living with dental implants and more than 500,000 are placed each year? That’s a lot of fully restored smiles! And guess what? You can be one of the many who are enjoying the many great benefits of dental implants in Houston. From greater functionality, better oral health, enhanced appearance, and longer-lasting prosthetics, dental implants make it possible to embrace a better quality of life. You will find that once your implants are firmly in place along with your customized restoration, you’ll wonder why you didn’t pursue this method of treatment sooner. Below is a list of outstanding benefits you can expect when choosing dental implants.
- Dental implants are extremely easy to clean and care for, requiring no additional cleaning supplies. Instead, you are free to maintain your implants just like you do your regular teeth. By choosing a prosthetic that is easy to take care of, you’ll be more likely to brush, floss, and rinse regularly, lowering your risk for common oral health problems.
- Traditional dentures might move around if they don’t fit properly, but implants will keep them in place so that you can speak clearly and chew easier. This will allow you to eat all your favorite foods without the added worry of your prosthetic slipping or falling out of place.
- Thanks to the lack of slipping and the aesthetic advantages, dental implants in Houston can make it much easier to smile. As a result, your self-esteem will improve, and you will have the opportunity to embrace a better quality of life. Unlike denture-wearers who admit they struggle to enjoy social gatherings because of how embarrassed they are of their prosthetic, dental implants provide the security and confidence you need.
- Implants will stop your other teeth from drifting, which makes them easier to brush and floss. They also don’t require us to make changes to your enamel.
- Dental implants do not require that your implant dentist in Houston use your healthy teeth as anchors. Instead, your implants will sit within the vacated socket and fuse with the bone, leaving your remaining teeth healthy and unaltered.
- Since they stimulate the jawbone, dental implants are the only kind of tooth replacement that can prevent bone loss. Their ability to mimic the natural tooth root ensures that your jawbone will remain stimulated each time you bite down or chew, which is a valuable component to preventing facial collapse.
- Your oral and overall health will be positively impacted when choosing dental implants. Because tooth loss and a person’s lifespan are closely connected, it is believed that individuals over the age of 65 who have lost 5 or more teeth will suffer from osteoporosis, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. By choosing to replace your missing teeth with dental implants, you can reduce your risk for systemic issues, help to extend your lifespan, and avoid costly treatments to address your overall health in the future.
- According to an article on Healthline, dental implants make it possible to lower your risk for gum disease, which can lead to implant failure if left untreated. Because of the connection between gum disease and overall health, it is believed that individuals who have healthy gums or who are managing their gum disease pay 10-40% less in cardiovascular care costs.
- The average success rate for dental implant placement is around 98%. It only falls to 90-95% after 10 years as long as you commit to maintaining your new smile.
- With minimal maintenance, you can expect to keep your implants for decades or even a lifetime!
- Dental implants are much more cost-effective than you might think. Instead of paying a smaller among upfront for dentures or dental bridges, you can pay more initially but also avoid the added expenses of regular adjustments and replacements, denture adhesives, and special cleaning supplies.
Who Dental Implants Can Help
It doesn’t matter if you are missing one, multiple, or all your teeth, most adults suffering from tooth loss can receive dental implants. While it does require an initial consultation with a dental implant dentist in Houston, we will examine your smile in its entirety as well as your facial structures to determine if you are eligible to move forward with dental implant surgery or if you need preliminary treatments first. No matter which direction you’re recommended, you can rest assured we will get you the permanent smile you desire.
Who is a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?
If you are a healthy adult with one or more missing teeth, you’re likely to be eligible for dental implants in Houston. Typically, during your consultation, Dr. Palmer will evaluate the following:
- Your overall health to ensure you have no autoimmune disorders or immune-weakening conditions that could complicate the success of your implant placement.
- Your oral health to check for any signs of severe tooth decay or gum disease. If found, periodontal therapy or even tooth extraction may be necessary.
- Your jawbone, as it will serve as the foundation for your implants and customized restoration. If it is weak in areas, you may need a bone graft.
Just because you don’t think you’ll qualify for treatment doesn’t mean that you should give up hope. Dr. Palmer understands the desire for these permanent prosthetics. With more than 500,000 being placed each year, it’s no surprise people are choosing to go with a sturdier solution.
Missing One Tooth
Just one missing tooth can lead to bone loss and create serious bite complications. Eating and speaking can prove quite difficult as well. Luckily, a single dental implant and crown can take its place very effectively. Note that in most cases, you’ll need to wait a few months for osseointegration to take place before the implant is able to bear the load of a custom-made dental crown.
Missing Multiple Teeth
Sometimes, the gap in your smile will be wider than just a single tooth, and in those cases, you can “bridge” the gap with a restoration called a dental bridge. This is a pair of crowns that holds one or more prosthetic teeth between them, and each crown is supported by one or two dental implant posts. The same number of implants can be used if your missing teeth are not consecutive. Instead of a bridge, we can create an implant partial that fits into your smile just like a puzzle piece.
Missing All Teeth
Even if you’ve lost all of your teeth, you could still be a candidate for dental implants. Full dentures can be supported by as few as four posts (though some patients might need up to eight). When your dentures are anchored this way, they can be brushed and flossed just like real teeth. Not to mention, you can avoid accidental slippage that frequently occurs with traditional dentures.
The All-on-4 treatment was developed in 1998, and since then, it has become a popular option for placing implants without the need for bone grafting. The four posts are positioned so that they take advantage of the areas of the jaw with the highest bone density. With this approach, you can receive temporary dentures on the same day as the surgery!
The Dental Implant Process
While you’ll be able to learn all the steps that go into your future tooth replacement when you arrive, we encourage you to take a minute to read about the most essential stages of your dental implant treatment on our website. That way, you can gain a better understanding of the procedure ahead of your consultation. If you have questions or concerns you want to address beforehand, we’ll be happy to inform you to the fullest extent so you can feel confident about your procedure.
Initial Dental Implant Consultation
At your first appointment with us regarding dental implant treatment, we’ll perform a comprehensive exam to confirm if dental implants are the best option for you based on your needs. On top of learning how many teeth you are missing and where they are located, we’ll capture digital X-rays to gain a clearer understanding of your current oral structures. If we believe that you have sufficient bone tissue and positive oral health, we’ll start planning your tooth replacement and get you scheduled for surgery on a later date.
Dental Implant Surgery
On the day of your surgery, we’ll make sure that you’re completely comfortable and ready for your procedure beforehand. If you have opted to receive sedation dentistry, we’ll administer this ahead of applying a local anesthetic to the surgical area. Local anesthetic is designed to remove all sensations during surgery, ensuring your process is comfortable and straightforward.
During surgery, a small incision is created in the gum tissue, following by a tiny hole for the implant to sit in. After the implant is placed, the gum tissue will be stitched closed so the titanium post can begin to fuse with the jawbone. We’ll go over your aftercare instructions with you immediately after so you can avoid any hiccups during your recovery period.
Dental Implant Osseointegration & Abutment
In order for the implant to have true long-term stability, it must undergo a process known as osseointegration. Dental implants are often made from titanium, which is a biocompatible material capable of fusing with organic structures (like bone tissue) without fear of it being rejected. However, this process takes quite a long time to complete, usually about 4 to 6 months. Once we’ve determined the implant has fully fused, you’ll come back to our office to have an abutment attached. This metal connector will provide stability to the permanent restoration that sits on top and completes your smile.
Delivery of Dental Implant Restoration(s)
Following a few more weeks of healing after the abutment is attached, you’ll come back to our office one last time to have your permanent restoration placed. Whether you planned to receive a dental crown, bridge, or denture, you can expect it to feel incredibly natural when attached to your dental implants. Thanks to the high-quality materials used to create these restorations, no one but you and our office will know you had dental implants placed!
Start to Finish Convenience
Thanks to his training and experience, Dr. Palmer can both place and restore dental implants. As a result, there’s no need to see a specialist to have the surgery done; the entire procedure will be in the hands of a dentist you’re already familiar with, and everything is taken care of under one roof. For particularly complex or difficult implant procedures, you can trust our periodontist, Dr. Holland, to provide the precise care that you need.
Understanding the Cost of Dental Implants
The answer to the question of how much dental implants cost is different for everyone, and we’ll only be able to give you an estimate after Dr. Palmer has examined your mouth and evaluated your specific circumstances. That’s because our team has to consider multiple factors, including the exact number of missing teeth, their locations in the mouth, and any prep work that may be required. We’ll break these factors down for you during your consultation. Keep in mind that although they seem expensive at first, dental implants may actually be the more cost-effective solution overall due to their long lifespan.
Preliminary Treatments & Dental Implant Surgery
It’s not uncommon for some patients, especially seniors, to need one or more preparatory procedures before dental implants can safely be placed. For example, gum disease can jeopardize the success of implants, so it must be treated beforehand. Procedures like these increase the chances that your new teeth will stand the test of time, but they also add to your total treatment costs.
The surgical procedure itself, as well as any anesthesia used, will also incur its own cost. On the bright side, Dr. Palmer is a trained implant dentist in Houston who can handle this step in-house. As a result, your payment should be more convenient than it would be if you were referred to an outside specialist for the surgery.
The Parts of Your Dental Implant
In addition to the number of implants you need and where they’ll be placed in your mouth, the materials used to create your implants will also affect your final cost. All three of the parts of your dental implant – the post, the restoration, and the abutment that connects the two – can be made from different materials, each of which benefits different types of patients and comes at its own price point. Our team will be transparent as to why we recommend one over the other as well as how they impact the amount of money for which you’re responsible.
How Dental Implants Pay for Themselves
The initial cost of dental implants in Houston is almost always higher than that of traditional bridges and dentures. However, there’s a good chance that they’ll save you money in the long run. Since they shouldn’t need to be replaced, you’ll most likely pay a single amount in the beginning rather than compounding on the up-front lower price of dentures and bridges. Additionally, dental implants don’t require adhesives or special cleaning products, which can really rack up costs for patients with traditional prosthetics. Combined with the day-to-day benefits of dental implants, it’s easy to see why this solution eventually pays for itself!
Does My Dental Insurance Cover Dental Implants?
While dental insurance rarely covers dental implants, your plan may pay for other portions of the treatment. For example, it typically covers part of the restoration that goes on top of the implants as well as preliminary treatments like gum disease therapy. Our team members will help you navigate your benefits, ensuring you receive all of the savings to which you’re entitled. We’re in-network with many leading dental PPOs, including Cigna , Delta Dental, and Aetna.
Making Dental Implants Affordable
Even without insurance, we offer other options for making dental implants in Houston affordable. Our practice has partnered with CareCredit and Wells Fargo, both of which provide low- to no-interest loans to help patients with or without insurance finance their care. With the sheer number of plans they offer, you’re sure to find one that easily fits within your monthly budget. Our team members can even help you with the application process.
Dental Implant FAQs
Replacing missing teeth is an important decision, so we know you might have a few questions about dental implants in Houston. Dr. Palmer will be happy to discuss the entire implant treatment process during an initial consultation. Until then, you can take a look at the frequently asked questions and answers below.
How Long Do Dental Implants Last?
With proper care, dental implants can easily last for 30 years or more! The long-lasting nature of implants is one of their biggest advantages over other restorative solutions. For instance, traditional bridges and dentures must typically be replaced every 5 to 15 years. The lifespan of your dental implants will depend in part on your lifestyle and behaviors. You can help ensure your implants remain a part of your smile for as long as possible by:
- Brushing twice a day
- Flossing and rinsing with mouthwash daily
- Avoiding hard or sticky foods
- Visiting an implant dentist in Houston every six months for routine checkups
Does Getting Dental Implants Hurt?
Even though getting dental implants involves oral surgery, the process typically does not cause any serious pain or discomfort. Dr. Palmer will use a local anesthetic before the procedure begins to numb your mouth. In addition, depending on the complexity of your case, you may also be sedated. Dental sedation will lower your body’s ability to feel pain.
After your implants are placed, your mouth may feel sore for a few days. Taking prescription or over-the-counter pain medication as directed by Dr. Palmer will help manage any discomfort. Holding a cold compress to your cheek off and on can also help. Soreness following dental implant placement should go away after a few days. If your pain or swelling gets worse instead of disappearing, do not hesitate to contact our office.
How Long Does It Take to Recover from Dental Implant Surgery?
While every case is different, dental implants in Houston typically take up to six months to fuse with the jawbone. After getting your dental implants placed, plan on heading home to rest. You should be able to resume your normal activities the day after surgery. However, avoid exercise for the first week or so. Strenuous physical activity can increase bleeding and swelling around your implants and delay the healing process. While some bleeding and swelling are normal in the first few days after getting dental implants, both should stop within 2 to 4 days. As mentioned above, taking prescribed or over-the-counter pain relievers as directed by Dr. Palmer can help manage any soreness.
Will People Be Able to Tell That I Have Dental Implants?
There is very little chance that anyone will able to tell that you have dental implants in Houston. Because implants integrate directly with the jawbone, you won’t have to hold your jaw in a strange way to prevent shifting as you might with poorly fitting dentures. In addition, the crown, bridge, or dentures that sit on top of your implants will be completely customized to match your surrounding natural teeth. So, the only people that will know you have dental implants are you and Dr. Palmer!
Maintaining & Caring For Your Dental Implants
Taking proper care of your dental implants is key if you want to make sure they remain in place for as long as possible. Using the right tools and techniques to safeguard your smile will ensure that you can enjoy your new teeth for the rest of your life! Dr. Palmer and our team will go the extra mile to provide you with instructions for optimal dental implant care in Houston.
Making Oral Hygiene a Priority
It’s important once your dental implants are firmly in place that you do not neglect your oral hygiene routine. Because dental implants in Houston can fail if the bone is not structurally sound, you’ll need to make sure your oral health remains in optimal shape. Brushing twice a day for two minutes using fluoride toothpaste, flossing at least once a day, and rinsing with an ADA-approved mouthwash will help to minimize your risk for tooth decay, gum disease, and other possible infections.
Eating a Healthy Diet
No one is saying you can’t enjoy a cookie or ice cream now and then, but you certainly don’t want to make them part of your normal daily diet. In fact, too much sugar or starch can cause tooth decay and gum disease to develop, both of which can negatively impact your dental implants. Instead, incorporate fruits, vegetables, leafy greens, lean proteins, foods rich in Vitamin C, and low-fat dairy into your diet to help keep your gums healthy and your jawbone and teeth strong.
Breaking Bad Habits
If you are prone to eating ice, biting your fingernails, chewing on pens or pencils, smoking, or trying to open packages or containers with your teeth, it’s time to stop! With dental implants, you can easily chip, break, or fracture a tooth, resulting in timely and costly procedures to fix it. Instead, start breaking these habits long before you ever receive your dental implants. Smoking can weaken your immune system, making it difficult if not impossible to heal after surgery. If you want to avoid the potential for implant failure, make sure to kick the habit and forgo these other harmful practices before receiving your new smile.
Protecting Your Dental Implants
A customized mouthguard is one of the smartest investments you can make after having your dental implants surgically placed. If you enjoy playing sports or suffer from stress that causes you to grind or clench your teeth, a mouthguard can be your first line of defense against potential dental injuries. A hard-hitting tackle, sudden fall, or continuous pressure placed on your tooth enamel can all lead to a visit to your emergency dentist. Safeguard your smile by having your implant dentist in Houston create a customized mouthguard that fits comfortably and offers maximum protection.
Scheduling Regular Dental Checkups
Even if you receive an implant denture to replace all your missing teeth, you still need to maintain regular dental checkups and cleanings. Seeing your dentist is one of the best ways to keep your smile in optimal shape and free of damage or disease. Your dental implants need the help of a professional just like your regular, natural teeth do, so don’t disregard these six-month visits. While at-home oral hygiene is important, so is letting our team take a look at your oral cavity to ensure no problems exist.