Dental implants are a comfortable, natural-feeling alternative for dentures and bridges, with a fit that’s more secure and function that’s more like your own teeth. As a top-rated dentist in Lansdowne, Virginia, Dr. Paul Ellington offers state-of-the-art dental implants for patients at Lansdowne Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, using advanced techniques for beautiful results. To learn more about dental implants and to find out if they could be a good choice for you, call the office, or use the online system to schedule an office visit today.
A dental implant is a metal post that secures to your jaw bone, and is then attached to an artificial tooth (or crown). Implants are a popular alternative to dentures and bridges because they’re more secure and more comfortable, feeling and looking just like your own natural teeth. Plus, there’s no risk of embarrassing slippage or the painful sore spots that slippage can cause. Implants also stimulate the normal bone replacement process in your jaw bone to help prevent future tooth loss.
Placing a dental implant usually takes three office visits:
At the first visit, Dr. Ellington places the metal post in your jaw bone. Sometimes, there isn’t enough jawbone to support and secure the post. The convenience and efficiency of in-office digital radiology (digital X-rays) can confirm this, so Dr. Ellington can perform a bone graft at the same time, placing a tiny sample of bone in the jawbone to provide additional support for the post.
After your first appointment, the post (and graft if it’s used) need several weeks to fuse with the surrounding bone, a process that can take about two to three months.
At the second visit, Dr. Ellington places a special piece called an abutment on the post. The abutment secures the crown to the post. At this visit, he also takes an impression of the area and sends it to the lab, where the crown is made.
During the third visit, Dr. Ellington attaches the crown to the post and adjusts it for a perfect fit.
Although implant posts are most commonly used to attach a single tooth, they can also be used to attach a partial or full denture to enable those restorations to fit more comfortably. Dr. Ellington can perform multiple implants in a single visit.
No. One of the advantages of implants is that you can care for them just like your own teeth, with regular brushing and flossing. Although the crown can’t decay, the gums around the post can still become infected, just as with your natural teeth, so having regular dental visits is also highly important for keeping your implants in good shape.
To date, few insurance companies cover the cost of implants, but some insurance companies do provide at least partial coverage. Our office staff can help you determine your benefits, and we can also suggest financing programs to help you fit the cost of care into your budget.