"People Love Us On Google"

1470+ Google reviews

New patients Welcome! Extended hours!

What are teeth implants? Learn the Answer Here!
June 07, 2024  |  Uncategorized

What are teeth implants? Learn the Answer Here!

What are teeth implants? If you've been considering ways to replace missing teeth or improve your smile, you may have come across this term. Dental implants have become an increasingly popular solution for those seeking a permanent and natural-looking way to restore their dental health and appearance.

Trauma, injury, or decay can leave you with a missing tooth, but that gap can affect more than just your smile. When you're self-conscious about eating, speaking, or socializing, it's time to explore alternatives to traditional dentures and bridges – like dental implants, a cutting-edge solution that can transform your quality of life.

Want to know the secret to a confident smile? It starts with understanding dental implants. Let's explore the benefits and answers to common questions, so you can decide if implants are right for you.

Schedule a Free New Patient Consultation at Affordable Dentist Near Me with Dr Pham.

What Are Teeth Implants?

What Are Teeth Implants?

If you're missing teeth, you've probably heard about dental implants. But what are teeth implants, exactly? Let's break it down.

Definition of Dental Implants

Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that provide a permanent base for fake teeth. They're a popular, long-term solution for people who have lost teeth due to injury, periodontal disease, or other reasons.

Components of Dental Implants

Dental implants have three main parts:

1. The implant: A screw-like post, usually titanium, that's surgically placed into the jawbone to replace the tooth root.

2. The abutment: A connector attached to the top of the implant, above the gum line, to support the artificial tooth.

3. The crown (or prosthetic tooth): A custom-made replacement tooth, usually porcelain or zirconia, that's attached to the abutment for a natural look.

How Dental Implants Work

The secret to dental implants? Osseointegration. This process allows the implant to fuse with the jawbone, creating a strong anchor for the artificial teeth.

The typical implant procedure has a few key steps:

1. Initial consultation
2. Surgical placement of the implant
3. A healing period
4. Attachment of the abutment and crown

The end result? Replacement teeth that look, feel, and function like the real deal. Dental implants can restore your smile and improve your quality of life.

Benefits of Dental Implants

So, why choose dental implants over other tooth replacement options? Let me count the ways.

Improved Oral Health

Unlike dental bridges, implants don't require reducing other teeth. This leaves more of your natural teeth intact, improving long-term oral health. Plus, individual implants allow easier access between teeth, making oral hygiene a breeze.

Enhanced Appearance

Dental implants look and feel like your own teeth. They fuse with bone, becoming permanent. This means the replacement teeth can function and look just like the real deal - no one will know the difference.

Durability and Longevity

With proper care, dental implants can last a lifetime. Made from durable materials like titanium and porcelain, they resist decay and staining. Unlike dentures or bridges that may need replacing every 5-10 years, implants are a long-lasting solution.

Convenience and Comfort

Say goodbye to the hassle of removing dentures and messy adhesives. Dental implants eliminate all that. They let you eat your favorite foods with confidence and speak clearly. And because they become part of you, implants offer the ultimate comfort and convenience.

Types of Dental Implants

Not all dental implants are created equal. There are a few different types, each with their own unique benefits.

Endosteal Implants

The most common type, endosteal implants are surgically implanted directly into the jawbone. Shaped like small screws, cylinders or blades, they fuse with the bone over time. After healing, a second surgery connects a post to the original implant. Finally, an artificial tooth (or teeth) is attached to the post individually, or grouped on a bridge or denture.

Subperiosteal Implants

Subperiosteal implants consist of a metal frame that's fitted onto the jawbone just below the gum tissue. As the gums heal, the frame becomes fixed to the jawbone. Posts, which are attached to the frame, protrude through the gums. These posts provide stable anchors for the artificial teeth. Subperiosteal implants are used for patients with significant bone loss who can't undergo bone augmentation.

Zygomatic Implants

Zygomatic implants are a specialized type used when there's insufficient bone in the upper jaw for traditional implants. These longer implants are anchored in the zygomatic bone (cheekbone) rather than the maxilla (upper jaw). This provides a stable foundation for artificial teeth in cases of severe bone loss. The procedure is complex and requires skilled surgical expertise.

The Dental Implant Procedure

Curious about what's involved in getting dental implants? Here's a closer look at the process.

Initial Consultation

The journey begins with a comprehensive evaluation by your dental implant specialist. This includes a thorough exam of your teeth, gums, and jawbone, as well as a review of your medical history. X-rays and 3D imaging may be used to assess bone density and determine the optimal placement for the implants. This consultation is also the perfect time to discuss your treatment goals and create a personalized plan.

Implant Placement Surgery

During implant surgery, the dental surgeon makes an incision in the gum to expose the bone. Holes are drilled into the bone where the dental implant metal post will be placed. The post is then inserted into the hole, serving as the tooth root. A temporary protective cover screw is placed on the implant while it integrates with the bone. This process can take several months.

Osseointegration Period

After the implant post is placed, osseointegration begins. During this process, the jawbone grows and bonds with the surface of the dental implant. This can take several months, but it's crucial for providing a solid base for your new artificial teeth. Osseointegration is why dental implants are so strong and durable.

Abutment Placement

Once osseointegration is complete, a minor surgery is performed to attach the abutment to the implant post. The abutment is the piece where the crown will eventually attach. Sometimes, the abutment is placed at the same time as the implant surgery. After the abutment is placed, the gum tissue is allowed to heal for a couple of weeks before the artificial tooth is attached.

Restoration Placement

The final step in the dental implant procedure is the placement of the custom-made artificial tooth (or teeth). An impression of your teeth is taken to create a model of your bite, which is used to fabricate the crown, bridge, or denture. The restoration is then securely attached to the abutment. And with that, your dental implant procedure is complete.

Candidates for Dental Implants

Wondering if you're a good candidate for dental implants? Here are a few key factors to consider.

Good Overall Health

Ideal candidates for dental implants are in good general and oral health. You'll need adequate bone in your jaw to support the implant, and healthy gum tissues free of periodontal disease. Chronic illnesses like diabetes or leukemia may interfere with healing after surgery. If you have any of these health issues, you might not be a good candidate for dental implants.

Adequate Jawbone Density

Having enough bone to support the implant is crucial for long-term success. If bone loss has occurred due to periodontal disease or prolonged absence of natural teeth, a bone grafting procedure may be necessary before implant placement. This helps ensure a solid foundation for the implant and increases the likelihood of a successful outcome.

Commitment to Oral Hygiene

Dental implant candidates must be committed to maintaining good oral hygiene. Just like natural teeth, implants require regular brushing, flossing, and routine dental check-ups to stay healthy. If you're unable or unwilling to keep up with proper oral care, dental implants might not be right for you. Poor hygiene can lead to gum disease and implant failure.

Non-smokers or Willing to Quit

Smoking can significantly impact dental implant success rates. It slows down healing, increases the risk of infection, and contributes to implant failure. Heavy smokers generally aren't good candidates for dental implants. But if you're willing to quit smoking or significantly cut back, you may still be able to get implants after a thorough evaluation by your dental specialist.

Key Takeaway:

If you're considering teeth implants, think of them like planting a tree. You need a strong foundation (jawbone), a sturdy trunk (implant), and a beautiful canopy (crown) that blooms with confidence. Focus on nurturing that foundation and you'll be flashing a radiant smile in no time.

Risks and Complications of Dental Implants

While dental implants are a safe and effective solution for missing teeth, there are potential complications that can arise. It's important to be aware of these risks before undergoing the procedure.


One of the most common complications of dental implant surgery is infection. This can occur in the gum tissue around the implant or in the bone surrounding the implant. Proper oral hygiene and following post-operative care instructions can help minimize the risk of infection. In rare cases, an infection may lead to implant failure if not promptly treated.

Nerve Damage

In rare instances, dental implant surgery can result in nerve damage. This is more likely to occur in the lower jaw, where the implant may be placed too close to the nerve that runs through the jawbone. Nerve damage can cause pain, numbness, or tingling in the lips, gums, or chin. In most cases, these symptoms are temporary and resolve on their own. However, permanent nerve damage is a possibility.

Sinus Issues

Dental implants placed in the upper jaw may protrude into the sinus cavity, causing sinus problems. This is more likely to occur if there is insufficient bone height in the upper jaw and the implant is placed too close to the sinus. Sinus issues related to dental implants can include inflammation, infection, or the development of a hole between the mouth and sinus cavity (oral-antral fistula). A sinus lift procedure may be performed prior to implant placement to reduce these risks.

Implant Failure

While dental implants have a high success rate, there is a risk of implant failure. This can occur due to various factors, such as infection, excessive force on the implant, insufficient bone support, or an allergic reaction to the implant material. Symptoms of implant failure may include pain, swelling, looseness of the implant, or visible bone loss around the implant. In cases of implant failure, the implant may need to be removed, and the area allowed to heal before considering a new implant.

Allergic Reactions

In very rare cases, a patient may experience an allergic reaction to the materials used in dental implants, such as titanium. Symptoms of an allergic reaction may include itching, swelling, or a rash in the area around the implant. If an allergic reaction is suspected, the implant may need to be removed and alternative restorative options considered. Thorough pre-operative allergy testing can help identify any potential material sensitivities.

Caring for Dental Implants

Proper care and maintenance of your dental implants are crucial for their long-term success. Just like natural teeth, implants require regular brushing, flossing, and routine check-ups with your dentist.

Brushing and Flossing

Brushing twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush and low-abrasive toothpaste helps remove plaque and prevent staining. Flossing daily is also important to maintain the health of the gum tissue around the implant and prevent periodontal disease. Special interdental brushes or floss threaders may be helpful in cleaning hard-to-reach areas around the implant.

Regular Dental Check-ups

Scheduling regular check-ups with your dentist is essential for maintaining the long-term success of your dental implants. During these visits, your dentist will examine the implant, surrounding gum tissue, and the artificial tooth for any signs of complications. They may take x-rays to evaluate the bone levels around the implant and ensure that the implant is properly integrating with the jawbone. Regular professional cleanings also help keep the implant and surrounding teeth healthy.

Avoiding Damaging Habits

To protect your dental implants and ensure their longevity, it's important to avoid habits that can damage them. This includes chewing on hard objects like ice, pens, or fingernails, which can crack or chip the artificial tooth or put excessive pressure on the implant. Grinding or clenching your teeth (bruxism) can also put undue stress on the implant and lead to complications. If you grind your teeth, your dentist may recommend wearing a night guard to protect your implants and natural teeth.

Professional Cleanings

In addition to regular dental check-ups, professional cleanings are crucial for maintaining the health of your dental implants. During these cleanings, a dental hygienist will use specialized instruments to remove plaque, tartar, and stains from the implant and surrounding teeth. They may also use polishing tools to keep the artificial tooth looking clean and natural. The frequency of professional cleanings may vary depending on your individual needs and oral health status.

By following these simple care instructions, you can help ensure the long-term success of your dental implants and enjoy a beautiful, healthy smile for years to come. Remember, investing in your oral health is always worth it.

Cost of Dental Implants

One of the most common questions I get from patients considering dental implants is, "How much do they cost?" The truth is, the cost of dental implants can vary widely depending on several factors.

Factors Affecting Cost

The number of implants needed, the type of implant and artificial tooth chosen, the complexity of the case, and any additional procedures required (such as bone grafting or sinus lifts) all play a role in determining the overall cost of treatment. Geographic location and the expertise of the dental professional also impact the price.

Insurance Coverage

Unfortunately, dental insurance policies often vary in their coverage of dental implants. Some plans may cover a portion of the cost, while others may not cover implants at all, considering them an elective procedure. It's important to review your insurance policy and discuss coverage with your dental provider before beginning treatment. In some cases, medical insurance may cover dental implants if they are deemed medically necessary, such as when an implant is needed due to a traumatic injury.

Financing Options

At our practice, we understand that the cost of dental implants can be a significant investment. That's why we offer a variety of financing options to help make the procedure more affordable. We have in-house payment plans, third-party financing through companies like CareCredit, and dental savings plans. We also offer discounts for paying in full upfront or for undergoing multiple procedures at once. Our goal is to help you get the treatment you need without breaking the bank.

While the cost of dental implants may seem daunting at first, it's important to remember that they are a long-term investment in your oral health and quality of life. With proper care, dental implants can last a lifetime, providing you with a beautiful, functional smile for years to come.

Choosing a Dental Implant Specialist

Choosing the right dental implant specialist is crucial for the success of your treatment. You want to make sure you're in the hands of a skilled, experienced professional who uses the latest technology and techniques.

Qualifications and Experience

When evaluating potential implant specialists, look for a dentist who has undergone extensive training in implant dentistry, such as through a residency program or specialized courses. Board certification in implant dentistry or periodontics can also indicate a high level of expertise. Don't be afraid to ask about the number of implant procedures the dentist has performed and their success rates. You want to choose a specialist with a proven track record of success.

Technology and Equipment

Dental implant treatment involves the use of advanced technology and equipment to ensure precise planning and placement of the implants. Ask about the technology the specialist employs, such as 3D imaging systems (like CBCT scans), computer-guided implant placement, and digital impressions. The use of modern technology can contribute to more accurate diagnoses, treatment planning, and implant positioning, ultimately leading to better outcomes.

Patient Reviews and Testimonials

Reading patient reviews and testimonials can provide valuable insights into the experiences of others who have undergone dental implant treatment with a particular specialist. Look for reviews on the practice's website, social media pages, and third-party review sites like Google or Yelp. Pay attention to comments about the dentist's bedside manner, communication skills, and the overall quality of care provided. While individual experiences may vary, a consistent pattern of positive reviews can be a good indicator of a skilled and reliable implant specialist.

At our practice, we pride ourselves on providing the highest quality of care to our patients. Our team of experienced implant specialists has undergone extensive training and uses the latest technology to ensure the best possible outcomes. We invite you to read our patient testimonials and schedule a consultation to see for yourself why we're the top choice for dental implants in the area.

Key Takeaway:

A healthy, long-lasting smile begins with regular brushing, flossing, and routine check-ups with your dentist to ensure the long-term success of your dental implants - it's like routine maintenance for your car to keep it running smoothly.


Throughout this post, we've explored the question, "What are teeth implants?" and delved into the various aspects of this innovative dental solution. From understanding the components and benefits of implants to learning about the procedure and caring for them, we've covered a lot of ground.

Dental implants can be a total game-changer. They provide a solid foundation for replacement teeth, allowing you to bite into life with confidence, and truly savor every moment – free from the anxiety of slippage or discomfort.

The path to dental implants begins with a candid conversation with a trusted dental professional. By doing so, you'll discover if this life-altering solution is the key to unlocking a more confident, healthy you.

So, if you've been wondering, "What are teeth implants?" and whether they might be right for you, take the first step by scheduling a consultation with a dental implant specialist. With their expertise and guidance, you can embark on a journey towards a healthier, happier smile that you'll be proud to share with the world.

Schedule a Free New Patient Consultation at Affordable Dentist Near Me with Dr Pham.