Dental Implants — San Antonio, TX
In the past, dentures and dental bridges were the only way to replace missing teeth. Unfortunately, these options only replace the visible portion of teeth, leaving much to be desired in terms of stability and comfort. Today, the New Image Dentistry team can help you restore both the roots and crowns of missing teeth with dental implants. This innovative tooth replacement solution creates natural looking, feeling, and functioning smile as well as a lifelong solution for missing teeth. For more information about dental implants in San Antonio, TX, please give us a call. We would be happy to answer your dental implant questions during a tooth replacement consultation to ensure you pick the right restoration option to meet your unique needs.
Why Choose New Image Dentistry For Dental Implants?
Entire Treatment Completed In-Office
Dental Implants Placed In-Office
by Our Experienced Periodontal Specialist
Advanced Dental Technology for Precise,
Comfortable, & Long-Lasting Results
What Are Dental Implants?
There are two parts to a natural tooth: the visible crown above the gumline and the hidden roots anchored into your jawbone. Unlike any other tooth loss solution, dental implants are designed to replace the entire structure of a missing tooth, not just the part you see when you smile. To do this, a dental implant contains three main parts: an implant post, an abutment, and a final restoration.
The small metal implant post is inserted directly into the jawbone to mimic the roots of the missing tooth. They’re usually made of titanium, which is a biocompatible material that has been used to integrate with bone tissue for decades. The post will fuse with the surrounding bone tissue, essentially becoming part of your jaw. This provides an incredibly stable foundation for the final restoration it supports. This crown, bridge, or denture is secured on top of the post via a small connector piece called an abutment and will be custom-made to blend in seamlessly with the rest of your smile.
No other option replaces missing teeth like this. As such, dental implants are the only way to regain a complete smile that looks, feels, and functions just like natural! That’s why dentists and patients alike consider dental implants to be the gold standard of tooth replacement.
The 4 Step Dental Implant Process
As you may imagine, replacing the entire structure of a missing tooth requires a more involved process than just bringing back the crown. As such, getting dental implants is unlike getting dentures or a dental bridge. Dental implant treatment goes through a multi-step process that spans several months. While this may seem like a long time, it’s this unique process that will help your dental implants feel and function just like natural teeth, and potentially last a lifetime!
Most other dentists need to refer their patients to an outside specialist for the surgical placement of dental implants. But that’s not the case here at New Image Dentistry! Our in-house periodontist and implant surgeon Dr. Kandice L. Klepper has extensive experience and advanced training in rebuilding smiles with dental implants. With her expertise, we’ll be able to complete your entire dental implant treatment right here in our San Antonio office, saving you time, money, and hassle!
Initial Dental Implant Consultation
The first step of dental implant treatment is to come visit us for a consultation. We’ll have a discussion with you about your tooth replacement goals, review your medical history, and examine your smile. It’s important that you’re free of oral health issues like gum disease and have a strong jawbone for your treatment to be successful. If needed, we’ll work with you to complete any necessary preliminary treatments such as gum disease therapy, tooth extractions, or bone grafting to get you ready for your dental implants. Then, once we’ve determined which teeth need to be replaced, how many dental implants you need, and other details about your treatment plan, we’ll schedule your placement surgery.
Dental Implant Surgery
When you get to our office for your dental implant surgery, we’ll make sure you feel relaxed and comfortable in the examination chair. Aside from a powerful local anesthetic to numb your mouth, you may be interested in sedation options to help you feel at-ease.
Then, Dr. Klepper will make one or more small incisions in your gums depending on how many dental implants you’ll be getting. Once she has access to the jawbone, she’ll carefully insert the dental implant(s) into the pre-determined positions. Then, the gums are closed again, a protective cap is placed over the implant, and you’ll be sent home to heal.
Dental Implant Osseointegration & Abutment Placement
While you’ll likely be able to return to your normal day-to-day activities a few days after your surgery, your jawbone will need much longer to heal. Over the next four to six months, a process called osseointegration will occur, where the dental implant fuses with the surrounding bone and gum tissue. After this step, your dental implant will essentially be a part of your jaw!
Then, you’ll return to our office for one more minor surgery. We’ll open the gums to expose the top of the dental implant(s) to attach a small connector piece called an abutment. Then, we’ll take impressions of the area and begin working on your final restoration.
Delivery of Dental Implant Restorations
Before you know it, you’ll be returning to our office for the last step of your dental implant treatment. We’ll secure your custom-made crown, bridge, partial, or full denture firmly to the implant(s) via the abutment. Next, we’ll take a few moments to make sure that your bite feels comfortable and go over how to best care for your dental implants. Then, you’ll be ready to walk out of our office with a strong, beautiful smile that looks like it was never missing any teeth in the first place!
Benefits of Dental Implants
No treatment is right for every patient, but for those who do decide to move forward with dental implants, there are numerous benefits. Tooth loss can be a devastating realization that hinders a person’s ability to eat, speak, and smile confidently. Fortunately, with the help of these permanent prosthetics, more than 3 million people have regained their physical aesthetics and confidence. Dental implants have the ability to change lives, which is why it’s important to understand the benefits of dental implants in San Antonio before making your final decision about how to replace your missing teeth.
- Eating your favorite foods can be enjoyable once more with dental implants. Unlike dentures that can slip or fall out and make it impossible to eat healthy, nutritious foods, dental implants remain firmly in your jawbone, providing a greater bite force and stronger chewing power.
- If you want to embrace a better quality of life, consider no other option other than dental implants in San Antonio. A recent study found that around 34% of denture-wearers believe their prosthetics hinder their ability to live a full life. By choosing dental implants, you can smile freely without feeling embarrassed by your prosthetic. You’ll instead enjoy greater functionality and a natural-looking aesthetic thanks to their ability to blend in with your natural teeth.
- Better oral health is attainable with dental implants. Instead of soaking them each night and buying specialized cleaning products to maintain them, you can floss, brush, and rinse just like normal. This minimizes your risk for tooth decay and gum disease, both of which can cause your implants to fail if you’re not careful.
- If you want to avoid the potential for systemic diseases, make sure to choose dental implants to replace your missing teeth. Tooth loss is closely tied to lifespan. With more individuals over the age of 65 living with 5 or more missing teeth, the risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and osteoporosis increases. You can avoid this by replacing your teeth with permanent prosthetics and taking better care of your smile, which will positively impact your overall health and wellbeing.
- Dental implants promote jawbone preservation. Because they are surgically placed into your jawbone, they act like a tooth’s root. As a result, they will continue to stimulate this area of your facial structure, preventing changes in your facial appearance and the potential for dental drift, which can occur when missing teeth are not replaced quickly.
- Oral sores and irritation no longer need to be a concern because dental implants are integrated into the bone tissue and do not sit on top of your gums like a traditional denture. When changes in your facial shape occur, your denture may no longer fit correctly, resulting in irritation and discomfort. However, this will not happen with dental implants because of their unique and permanent placement.
- You will find that when placed by an implant dentist in San Antonio who is trained and has experience in placing dental implants that you will have a high success rate of around 98%. This will only fall to 90-95% after 10 years, making it a trusted and longer-lasting method of treatment for tooth loss.
- Saving money is possible with dental implants, although that may be difficult to believe because of the costly upfront investment. However, when you consider the dental adhesives, specialized cleaning solutions, and frequent adjustments and repairs you’ll need every 5-7 years with your dentures, it’s easy to see why dental implants can save you lots of money when it comes to tooth replacement.
- When committing to a good oral hygiene routine and making sure you avoid bad habits, you can expect your dental implants to last 30 years or even a lifetime!
Who Dental Implants Can Help
Dental implants are versatile enough to replace a single tooth or anchor a bridge, partial, or full denture. Thus, no matter the extent of your tooth loss, this treatment may be the ideal solution for you.
Missing 1 Tooth
If you are missing just one tooth, you will receive a single dental implant. After the implant has fused with the bone around it, our team will attach a custom crown to it to replace the visible portion of your tooth.
Missing Multiple Teeth
For multiple missing teeth in a row, an implant bridge may be your best treatment option. Whereas a traditional bridge relies on the adjacent teeth for support, an implant-supported restoration is anchored in the jawbone, making it as secure and natural-feeling as possible.
Missing All Teeth
Instead of replacing an entire arch of missing teeth with a traditional full denture, we can rebuild your smile with an implant denture. This type of denture is securely anchored into your jawbone with several dental implants to give you a strong, confident smile. With either removable or fixed options, you won’t ever have to worry about your new teeth slipping or popping out of place!
Some patients who are missing all their teeth in on or both arches may be a candidate for All-On-4 dental implants. This special type of implant denture is held in place with only four strategically placed dental implants to maximum stability with minimal surgery. What’s more, most patients are able to receive replacement teeth the same day of their dental implant surgery! During your consultation, we’ll review all your options with you and help you pick the one that’s best for you.
Dental Implant Salvage
While the success rate for dental implant placement is extremely high, there are instances where a dental implant can fail. When this happens, dental implant salvage will be necessary in order to fix the problem. Depending on the reason for the initial failure, we will evaluate the tooth-in-question and formulate a plan. Whether it is caused by bone loss or the development of gum disease, we will work hard to ensure you get to keep your implants for as long as possible.