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Frequently Asked Questions – Getting a Manhattan Tooth Replacement
What are dental implants?
The word is out that dental implants can help people who have suffered from dental problems for years. Dental implants are used to replace missing teeth and to secure bridges. A dental implant has two components: an anchor which is placed under the gum (in the bone), and the custom-made tooth (or teeth) which is attached to it.
What’s involved in getting a Dental Implant?
In the first phase, the implant itself is placed under the gum in the bone. This procedure is done comfortably while the area has had a local anesthetic. There is no sensation that an implant is present - it becomes a completely accepted part of the body. Often, Dr. Woloch will replace the missing teeth on a provisional, or temporary, basis prior to or shortly after the implants are placed.
A period of 12 weeks or more is generally used to allow the bone to adapt to and secure the implant. After this period, the teeth or bridge will be made and Dr. Woloch will secure them to the implants. Once the teeth are in place, you will have a follow-up appointment with Dr. Woloch where he will make any necessary refinements.
Am I too old / young to have missing teeth replaced?
Older age is generally not a limitation to receiving implant treatment. If a person is in reasonably good health, there is no specific age limit to having dental implants placed. Concerning young people, we generally place implants after growth has been completed - usually the later teen years.
I have a medical condition. Am I still a candidate for dental implants?
Generally speaking, if a person’s medical condition allows them to have routine dental treatment, such as having a tooth removed, they can also have an implant placed. Certain medical conditions do require that precautions are taken. Conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease that are under control with medication are usually not an obstacle to receiving dental implant treatment. Dr. Woloch will review your medical history with you and guide you to the best, and safest, choices.
I’ve had gum disease. How will that affect my “new teeth?”
We have found that some people who need dental implants the most believe that implants would not last because of the problems that they had with their own teeth. This is definitely not the case. Almost all implants have been placed in patients who have lost their teeth to gum (periodontal) disease or decay, with very high success rates.
I’ve had partials/dentures for years. Does that rule out ‘permanents’ for me?
No! Having removable bridges are not limiting factors for implants. Implants can completely replace your old bridge or denture with ‘permanent’ teeth; or we can use implants to stabilize and secure removable dentures.
I’m a smoker. How will that affect my implant?
Smoking can lower the success rate of implants, but this does not exclude a person from getting them. Even if someone has smoked heavily for many years and stopped, placing implants can still be highly successful.
Do I need a specialist?
Dentistry, as in medicine, has general practitioners and specialists. Specialists are experts that have years of intense training in their specialty. Only doctors who completed certified post-doctoral programs approved by the American Dental Association can describe themselves as specialists. Patients who have a difficult case, or who want the security of being treated by an expert, may choose to consult with a specialist, such as a prosthodontist.
What is a prosthodontist?
A prosthodontist is the only dental specialist who is an expert in rebuilding damaged teeth, replacing missing teeth, and restoring your smile and bite.
Using the art and science of their specialty, prosthodontists use crowns, bridges, implants and the latest techniques to skillfully restore smiles to their original condition…or better.