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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Dental Implants

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Dental Implants

Dental implants generally have a higher up-front cost than other tooth replacement options, such as bridges and partials. However, these other tooth-replacement options are not made to last a lifetime, and studies show that they can contribute to additional tooth and bone loss. Dental implants are an investment in your long-term oral health, and most people agree that the benefits far outweigh the initial cost.

There are so many variables that it’s important to remember that we can’t pinpoint the exact cost of your dental implant procedure until we’ve evaluated your general oral health, the condition of the bone in your jaw. However, there’s no denying the fact that dental implant placement involves a significant investment.

Surgical fees range from about $1,800 and up for a single tooth replacement. With the addition of a restoration (typically a dental crown), the total cost is about the same as that of a three-unit dental bridge. However, unlike dental prosthetics like crowns, bridges, and dentures, dental implants have the potential to last a lifetime.

Benefits of Dental Implants

As you weigh the benefits of investing in dental implants, keep in mind that the cost of non-treatment can be considerably more expensive. Since other dental prosthetics only hide the empty space, bone loss will progress and ultimately lead to a number of other oral health problems. You may also want to factor in the continued cost of maintaining or replacing other types of prosthetics. Well-made crowns, bridges, and dentures have a long lifespan, but all will eventually need to be replaced or modified. Since dental implants are permanent, with proper oral hygiene and regular visits to the dentist, they will never need to be replaced.

Absolutely! Dental implants are made of materials which are safe for the human body. They are a beautiful, strong option to restore one or more missing teeth. In fact, dental implants are as close as you can get to a real tooth. By combining a sturdy, biocompatible metal implant with a beautiful, custom-made restoration, dental implants will restore your missing tooth with a natural, functional replacement, and no one will be able to tell the difference.

Components of a Dental Implant

The “root” structure of an implant is composed of biocompatible titanium. "Biocompatible" means that the body will accept the titanium implant as a natural part of your body and integrate with it, giving you a sturdy foundation for whatever dental restoration you need.

The “tooth” structure of your implant can be made from tooth-colored materials, such as ceramic or porcelain, that have been used reliably in dentistry for years. Whether you need a crown to restore a single tooth or an implant-supported bridge to replace multiple missing teeth, these ceramic and porcelain restorations look and feel natural. They don't even require any special cleaning agents or techniques--just brush and floss normally and visit our West Allis dental office for regular examinations and cleanings every six months.

If you are interested in dental implants, contact us today to schedule a consultation.

With all the rapid advancements in the field of dentistry, and specifically dental implantology, we now have more choices and techniques than ever to choose from. It's the rare case that we can’t treat with a dental implant or a combination of implants.

Dental Advancements

At WisconsinSmiles, we can design and employ a dental implant treatment plan to accommodate any number of problems. For example, we may find that you don’t have adequate jawbone in either the front or back part or the jaw for placing a dental implant in the bone. In a case like this, we may decide to place an over-the-bone type of implant in both areas, then fabricate non-removable teeth that are made to attach to the implants.

Over-the-bone implants have been used successfully in dentistry for over 30 years. This type of implant also offers the added benefit of supporting a fragile jawbone, and help prevent fracturing of teeth. At WisconsinSmiles, using multiple implant techniques is an essential part of the effective placement of implants.

Bone Graft

We have sufficient experience to know that there is no single design that will accommodate every patient in every situation. It may be that you need a bone graft to accommodate the implant. This procedure has proved to be remarkably effective, and in many cases, Dr. Monteagudo can perform this procedure right here at our West Allis office. A bone graft procedure strengthens the jaw and supplies additional bone for placement of the implant.

Whether or not we can place the dental implant immediately after extraction depends on the presence or absence of infection and the amount of available bone in the area. The advantage of placing the implant during the same visit is the preservation of both height and width of bone in the jaw, potentially eliminating the need for bone graft surgery as bone naturally recedes after a tooth is extracted.

Bone Loss

This is an important consideration since as much as 40% of jawbone width can be lost during the first year after extraction. In other cases, severe gum disease or decay may have compromised the bone to such a degree that a bone grafting procedure may be necessary before we can place the implant. In this case, a separate visit will be required to perform the grafting procedure.

If it is possible to place the implant at the same visit as the teeth are extracted, this can save at least three months in healing time compared to waiting for an extraction site to heal before the implants can be placed.

We’ll be happy to answer all your dental implant questions. Please contact our West Allis office, and we’ll be happy to arrange an implant consultation with Dr. Monteagudo.

Legally yes. Any dentist can place a dental implant, but like any other medical or dental procedure, not all practitioners have equal experience, training, or comfort with the procedure. Also, with any dental procedure a dentist performs, there is a learning curve. So it’s to your benefit to find a practitioner who has significant experience in this unique area of dentistry.  Choosing a dentist with experience and education specifically in the area of placing and restoring dental implants is the best way to get the best possible long term result.

Experienced Dentist

You can be confident that your dental implant treatment at WisconsinSmiles is being handled by a dentist who has a solid record of success in all areas of dentistry. Dr. Robert Monteagudo graduated from Marquette University School of Dentistry in 1990, and has been providing all his patients with top-quality care ever since. He continually advances his education in the fields of advanced esthetics, full mouth reconstruction, and many other areas with recognition for academic excellence.

Dr. Monteagudo speaks frequently throughout Wisconsin, educating dentists and patients alike in advancements in dentistry, Additionally, he serves on numerous boards for community betterment.

We encourage you to contact our office and arrange a consultation with Dr. Monteagudo to discuss your needs and learn more about the ways dental implants may benefit you.

Absolutely! This is an unfortunate situation that many of our patients who wear dentures experience on a daily basis.

In dentistry, it’s a well-established fact that a full lower denture is the most unstable dental prosthetic fabricated in any dental practice. This is because when you chew, the average lower denture is five times more likely to move than the upper.

Advanced Bone Loss

If you’re suffering with advanced bone loss, you may also face additional problems like difficulty with your speech, poor muscle coordination, and the inability to keep the denture in place. All of these will have an adverse effect on enjoying a normal lifestyle.

Dental Implants

Fortunately, dental implants offered at WisconsinSmiles can be a great solution for rectifying all these problems. Even if you’ve experienced significant bone loss, there’s still a good chance that we can do something to help. In most cases, a thorough evaluation and panoramic x-ray is all that’s required to decide if you are a good candidate for implants. We’ll take the time to talk to you about the problem that’s bothering you the most and work together until it’s resolved to your satisfaction.

Give us a call today to arrange an appointment!

We understand that this may seem like a cost-effective solution for gaining the benefit of function and stability that comes with a dental implant. However, this isn’t a good idea.

Experience has shown that it’s preferable not to attach implants to natural teeth. The problem with this being the fact that your new implant is much more stable than neighboring natural teeth. Natural teeth are constantly in a process where they’re moving slightly, even though you can’t see or don’t notice it.

Dental Bridges

Bridges work well because the artificial tooth uses neighboring teeth for support, so it absorbs any movement. However, a natural tooth attached to an implant will still move somewhat, as opposed to the dental implant, which is completely stable. However, it’s not uncommon for us to attach implants to each other, which is advantageous because the combined strength keeps the teeth stable.

In summary, it may appear to be a good solution that will save you a little money, the long-term results may not be as effective as you’d like. Yes, it may be less expensive in the short term to place one implant instead of two, the long-term success is likely to be much better with the two implants.

There’s a lot to consider when thinking about dental implants. At Wisconsin Smiles, we’ll be happy to answer your questions and help you find the solution that best fits all your needs. 

It’s hard to believe that an ill-fitting or loose denture can have such a profound effect on your lifestyle. It’s bad enough that the denture is uncomfortable, but you have the added problem of not being able to eat or, worse yet, taste the foods you eat.

Implant-Supported Dentures

There’s a good chance that, in your case, dental implants placed at our West Allis dental office will help resolve the problem. An upper denture covers the roof of your mouth. Since it fits securely over your soft palate, the goal is to "seal" themselves to the palate, thereby staying in place. However, this effective method of keeping the denture in place has the unfortunate side effect of covering up the palate, including many of your taste buds.

When we use implants to support or anchor the upper denture, we don’t need to cover the roof of the mouth for added stability. The roof of the mouth is left uncovered, eliminating gagging and allowing you to once again feel the taste, temperature, and texture of foods and beverages much better.

We would love to talk to you about dental implants and how they may improve your quality of life. Please give us a call and we’ll be happy to arrange a convenient dental implant consultation with Dr. Monteagudo.

There’s a good possibility that a dental implant would work well in this case. The goal of dentistry today is to do everything we can to keep your natural teeth fully intact for as long as possible, and any alteration of a tooth that includes removing healthy structure makes them more susceptible to problems.

Benefits of Dental Implants

While a bridge is still a great choice in certain cases, an implant may be a better option. Implants are as easy to brush and floss as your natural teeth. Bridges, on the other hand, make it difficult to properly clean the space between the prosthetic tooth and neighboring teeth. Many patients find it so difficult to clean that they end up ignoring these areas, and when you can’t floss thoroughly, you put yourself at risk for gum disease and a host of other dental problems. Dental implants are easier to clean and floss, don’t need to be attached to natural teeth. Basically, implants are as close to a natural tooth as we can provide.

We will be happy to talk to you about dental implants and all the benefits they offer compared to other types of tooth replacement. Please call our West Allis office so we can arrange a convenient consultation.

A common complaint among denture wearers is the mess and inconvenience of always having to apply adhesives to secure their dentures in place, especially when speaking, laughing, or eating a meal. What a nuisance – you’re enjoying dinner at a nice restaurant with friends, and suddenly you have to excuse yourself from the table to go to the rest room because your dentures won't stay in. Not the way you wanted your evening to go!

Issues with Dentures

Laughing, coughing, and laughing can also be troublesome for people who rely on adhesives to hold their teeth in place. You may find it funny to see another person’s denture fall out, but we can assure you it’s not funny when it’s you who has to deal with these embarrassing situations on a daily basis. Denture wearers with problems such as these are not alone. Nearly 30 million people in the US are without teeth and approximately 29% of those in this group are limited to chewing only soft foods.

Implant-Supported Dentures

If loose or ill-fitting dentures are preventing you from enjoying life, the addition of dental implants is something you should consider. We can use dental implants to fasten onto your dentures to hold them in place. Of course, you also have the option of doing away with dentures altogether and just going with dental implants.

A large majority of people who’ve had their upper back teeth missing for a long period of time experience a phenomena where the maxillary sinus begins to grow downward. When you’re born, this is about the size of a pea, and grows progressively as the skull matures. As it grows, it crowds into the area of surrounding bone, leaving a space where bone should be.

Missing Tooth Replacement

If you’re considering replacing your missing upper back teeth with a fixed tooth replacement that will remain stationary, we may need to perform a sinus “lift” to create space for dental implant placement into this area to support those teeth. This procedure involves the placement of bone and/or bone substitutes into the space that was previously taken up by the bottom part of your maxillary sinus.

Bone Grafting

The bone graft materials used act as a support structure, which is then replaced by the growth of new bone around it. This elevates the sinus floor, which reduces sinus volume and often allows the sinus to drain more easily. Primarily, the sinus lift procedure increases the available bone use to place implants and restore the missing back teeth.

Whatever your situation, if you’re interested in replacing missing teeth with dental implants, please call our West Allis dental office. We’ll be happy to arrange a convenient consultation with Dr. Monteagudo to discuss your needs.

Think about your implants as if they were natural teeth, then treat them that way. All of the things we would tell you about protecting the oral health of your natural teeth relates just as easily to dental implants. You’ve invested a lot of time in money in your new dental implants. As with natural teeth, dental implants will also require regular preventive maintenance like diligent at-home oral hygiene.

Daily Oral Care

Brush twice and floss twice a day. If you can’t brush, rinse your mouth after eating. This can remove a lot of food debris that would stick to your teeth and collect bacteria.

Regular Dental Exams

Make semi-annual visits to return to us for regular check-ups. During these exams we’ll check to make sure that your dental implant is doing well and no problems like periodontal disease are developing. Understand also, that caring for the gums is the best way to care for one's teeth. Proper gum care benefits all your teeth, not just your dental implants. More teeth are lost as a result of gum disease than any other single cause.

If you have more questions about caring for dental implants, please call our West Allis Dental office, and we’ll be happy to answer all your questions.

In general, the cost of surgical placement of dental implants is not covered by dental insurance. As with lots of other procedures, coverage varies widely from carrier to carrier. Some insurance plans will pay for implants, some won’t, and yet others pay only a portion of the costs.

Dental Insurance 

In many cases, though, your insurance may help pay for the restorative portion of teeth that are placed on the dental implants like crowns, bridges, or dentures. The good news is that today many more insurance companies are covering the cost of dental implants than they did ten years ago.

Limits of Dental Insurance

However, you may be surprised to know that there are cases where the best coverage can be obtained through your medical insurance. If you are missing all or most of your teeth, the implant procedure may be considered jaw reconstruction and restoration of normal chewing function.

Contact Us

It’s always best to start by contacting your insurance provider to see if any portion of the implant procedure is covered under your policy. In many instances, we have been able to work with our patients to help them obtain significant coverage for patients, but unfortunately we can’t make any promises because insurance coverage varies so widely from policy to policy. However, you can trust that our staff will work hard to see that you get the best possible benefit from your insurance.

At Wisconsin Smiles, we encourage our patients to continue going about their normal activities post-recovery, even if they include traveling during most of the time of the dental implant treatment process. However, we do recommend that our implant patients remain close to home immediately following placement of their implant.

Most people (regardless of age) will be able to resume their normal activities within 2-3 days after their surgery. However, we recommend that you stay close to home for 14 days post-surgery to insure that the healing process is progressing normally.

Dental Implant Placement

Once the implants are placed, integration of surrounding bone with the implant usually takes about 5-6 months, and most of that time is taken up just waiting for the bone to fuse completely with the implant. During this time, you will probably be able to continue to wear your temporary bridgework, partial, or denture from the day of your surgery until the day we place your final restoration. While you’re waiting, you can travel and do as you please.

Most patients who need tooth replacement are good candidates for the dental implant procedure. The general rule is that, if you’re healthy enough to undergo restorative procedures like fixed bridges or basic tooth extractions, you are probably healthy enough to undergo the dental implant process.

Healthy Jawbone to Support Implant

There are cases where a certain general health condition would make you an unlikely candidate, but that’s the exception rather than the rule. However, there are a few criteria that you need to meet if you’re interested in traditional dental implants. First, your jaw bone should be healthy enough to support the implant. The good news is that, even if your jaw bone has lost density, you may benefit from modern procedures like bone grafting or modified dental implant procedures.

After a thorough exam by Dr. Monteagudo, we can determine the form of dental implant that will work best for you. With modern techniques and Dr. Monteagudo’s extensive experience, there's no reason you shouldn't be able to benefit from implant treatment at Wisconsin Smiles.

If you would like more information or want to schedule a convenient dental implant consultation with Dr. Monteagudo, please give our office a call. We look forward to helping you enjoy a whole and healthy smile!

Absolutely not! It is true that dental implants have only begun to receive a lot of attention in the last few years as more and more dentists offer the procedure. But the fact is that the first successful placement of dental implants as we know them occurred in 1965!

Modern Implant Procedure

In the 44 years since the first successful modern implant procedure, the design and materials used for dental implants has steadily improved. Today, according to the American Academy of Implant Dentistry, more than 3 million implants have been placed successfully. Amazingly, that number is growing by 500,000 each year!

With those kinds of numbers, you’d expect that dental implants have proven to be a very effective form of tooth replacement. You would be right! While the success of a dental implant procedure has a lot to do with where in the mouth the implant is placed, the procedure has a success rate of over 98%.

Improve Oral Health

Dental implants improve your oral health, restore confidence in your appearance, and with proper care can last a lifetime. We’d be happy to tell you everything you need to know about dental implants – just give our West Allis dental office a call!

We often hear this question because patients relate the word “rejection” with procedures that involve transplanting of a vital organ, such as a heart. The important thing to know is that dental implants fall into a different category entirely. Issues like tissue matching and blood typing are not a factor as they are with transplantation of an organ like a heart or kidney.

Titanium Dental Implants

Dental implants are made of titanium, which is “biocompatible.” This is a complicated sounding term that simply means the material is easily accepted by the body. Titanium is the same material that has been used successfully for years in hip and joint replacements. Once the implant is placed, bone and tissue in your treats it like it belongs there, and starts to attach to the implant. Over time, the implant will integrate fully with the jaw, and this process is referred to as “osseointegration.”

Implants have a very high success rate (95-98%) but obviously, there are cases where the procedure has not been successful. However, the success of a dental implant procedure is more dependent on proper patient screening, the skill of the practitioner, and your long-term commitment to conscientious oral hygiene and preventive care.

If you would like more information about dental implants, please give Wisconsin Smiles a call, and we’ll be happy to arrange a convenient consultation to discuss your particular needs. 

It seems inevitable that, at some point as you get older, you stand a good chance of needing dentures. However, the reality is that advances in dental technology, materials, and treatment are allowing patients to keep their teeth longer and longer – sometimes throughout their lives.

Dental Implants

But what happens when someone, such as yourself, has either already lost some or all of their teeth or think they are about to? Updated technology to the rescue - dental implants could be the answer you’re looking for to avoid having to wear dentures. With dental implants, Dr. Monteagudo can replace just one tooth, several teeth in a section of your jaw, or an entire arch of teeth.

Family History of Dental Health Issues

It may be the case that you’re just one of those people who are more prone to tooth decay or periodontal disease and more apt to lose teeth than others. Having a family history of denture use simply means that you need to be very proactive about taking the steps to keep your teeth healthy and intact for as long as possible. With proper care and conscientious dental visits, you may never need dentures. However, in the event that you do lose one or more teeth, implants may be a good option to prevent the need for dentures.

teeth whitening | west allis If you’re considering a professional teeth whitening treatment in Milwaukee, WI we can help!

A professional teeth whitening treatment is part of cosmetic dentistry, but it is also one of the fastest ways to improve your smile without an invasive procedure, time off work, or a lot of expense.

In fact, you can have whiter and brighter teeth in about an hour with our ZOOM! Whitening system.

This system relies on a prescription-strength gel and light therapy to gently lift stains away from teeth, including tough stains that hide in the pores of dental enamel.

We also offer a take-home teeth whitening system that relies on custom trays and our prescription-strength whitening gel to brighten your smile over days or weeks.

A professional teeth whitening treatment is far more effective than a product you can purchase online or in your local drugstore. When it comes to your smile, you should always trust a professional to provide the very best and safest care, and this includes teeth whitening options.

Find out Whether You’re a Good Candidate for Professional Teeth Whitening

If you’re considering professional teeth whitening, contact WisconsinSmiles today for an assessment with our top cosmetic dentist. Also, give us a call if you have questions about teeth whitening in Milwaukee, WI.

Diagram of Dental Implant | Dentist West Allis WIAlthough you might not be able to see a missing tooth, it’s important to replace it with a prosthetic. Dental implants are an especially good option for many patients because they prevent the bone loss that accompanies a missing tooth. Without a tooth to support, the jaw that once held the missing tooth begins to degrade. This can affect neighboring teeth, and before you know it, you’re not just missing one tooth, but several teeth. Because dental implants are placed into the bone, your jaw maintains its purpose and its integrity, making sure you keep more of your natural teeth as long as possible.

What is the success rate for dental implants?

Dental implants today have a 95-98% success rate.

Will a dental implant be as strong as my natural teeth?

Yes. In fact, dental implants are often stronger than the teeth they are replacing!

You’ll be happy to know that you do not need an implant for every tooth we’re replacing. How many implants are necessary to provide support depends on the type of implants we choose to use and the type of denture (removable or non-removable) will be attached to the implants.

Dental Implants

In your case, if we find that you are a good candidate for endosseous (in-the-bone) implants, we may need to use anywhere between two and eight implants. The number we decide to use really depends on the technique we use to support a full set of lower teeth. In most cases, a thorough evaluation, including panoramic x-rays, is all that’s required to help us understand the best approach.

During this exam, Dr. Monteagudo will work with you to recommend which implant would be most appropriate and how many we need to use to stabilize the denture. In more complicated cases, we may need additional x-rays or CT scans to get a full picture of your needs.

Certainly, the best place to start is to give us a call! We’ll be happy to arrange a convenient consultation so Dr. Monteagudo can perform a dental implant evaluation, answer your questions, and make suggestions.

Dr. Monteagudo will be more than happy to talk to you about the possibility of replacing an entire arch of missing teeth with non-removable teeth (dentures) held securely in place with dental implants. In fact, the ability to be comfortable in social situations and eat properly was the primary motivation behind the development of dental implants.

Dependable Tooth Replacement Option

Of course, our ultimate goal is to eliminate the need for dentures as we now know them. The addition of dental implants will provide you with stable teeth, and, for many people, they’ll enjoy this stability for the first time in years. However, everyone is unique and presents a different combination of factors that we need to take into consideration to determine which type of implant will be best suited for them.

Removable Dentures

Another option is removable dentures that can be held in place and supported by several implants that are connected by a bar. We can also talk to you about the possibility of replacing the missing teeth with fixed or removable bridges that are anchored to five to eight implants. Dental implants are a viable and functional way to help improve your quality of life and health.

Please give us a call to arrange a dental implant consultation with Dr. Monteagudo.

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