Dental Implants – Fort Worth, TX
The Closest Alternative
To Your Natural Teeth
If you’re missing one or more teeth, you may have tried completing your smile with a denture or dental bridge. As lifelike as these options look, though, they don’t quite feel as reliable as the teeth you once had. That’s because they don’t bring back the root structure of your lost teeth. However, dental implants do. Because dental implants in Fort Worth recreate every part of the tooth, they’re the closest alternative to your natural teeth that modern dentistry has to offer. Better yet, Dr. Brad McConnell and Dr. Yaritza Vasquez can complete the entire dental implant process under one roof here at Harris Parkway Dental Care. Call our friendly team today to get started!
Why Choose Harris Parkway Dental Care for Dental Implants?
In-Office Dental Implant
Fort Worth Dentist with 40+ Years
Flexible Dental Financing
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are small titanium posts that are placed beneath the gum line to recreate the roots of missing teeth. Titanium is a biocompatible material, allowing the posts to chemically fuse with the jawbone and provide it with necessary stimulation and blood flow. Once your gums have healed, we’ll attach the abutments, or connector pieces, to the implants. These secure your permanent restorations to complete your smile.
The unique three-part structure of dental implants enables them to look, feel, and function just like your natural teeth did. Plus, their foundation within the jawbone gives them the potential to last for decades, if not a lifetime! For that reason, your dental implant dentist in Fort Worth will almost always recommend this solution for patients suffering from tooth loss.
4 Step Dental Implant Process
Compared to dentures and bridges, which only substitute for the crown of the missing tooth, implants require a more lengthy process. Although this treatment can take several months to complete, you’re sure to find your fully restored smile worth the time and effort. Unlike other general dental practices, which have to refer to other specialists’ offices, here at Harris Parkway Dental Care, we handle the entire process in-house from the first consultation all the way through restoration.
Initial Dental Implant Consultation
Before we get started, we need to make sure you’re a good candidate for this treatment. We will start by examining your mouth and jawbone to see if they’re healthy enough. We will ask you to give us a complete medical history and a list of medications you’re taking. If necessary, we can perform preliminary procedures, such as gum disease therapy, tooth extraction, or a bone graft, to ensure the success of your implants. At this appointment, we can also give you a clearer idea of the expected timeline and cost associated with treatment.
Dental Implant Surgery
For the placement procedure itself, we will start by numbing your mouth so that you’re completely comfortable throughout the surgery. We’ll then make small incisions in the gums and position the posts strategically within the jawbone. We’ll then close up the gums and place a protective cap or crown over each post to protect the areas while they heal. For a day or two following the procedure, you’ll need to follow our care instructions and refrain from eating crunchy or hard foods.
Dental Implant Osseointegration & Abutment
Over the course of three to six months after placement, we’ll wait for your jawbone to grow and envelop the posts, just as it does with natural tooth roots. This process of accepting growing around the implants is called osseointegration. We want to give plenty of time for the implants to become firmly embedded so that your replacement teeth are stable and strong. When we see that osseointegration is complete, we’ll then perform another quick procedure where we make a small incision and insert the abutments, or connection piece, into the implants.
Delivery of Dental Restoration(s)
Finally, after the abutments, which stick out above the gumline, have been placed and the gums have healed around them, we can take impressions of your mouth to create your custom restoration(s). After a few weeks, the dental lab will send us the final product, and we’ll be able to bond your restoration to the implants and complete your new and improved smile!
Benefits of Dental Implants
Modern dental bridges and dentures look more lifelike than ever, but they just don’t hold a candle to the advantages that dental implants provide. In addition to looking exactly like your old pearly whites, dental implants are also able to feel just as natural. Plus, they can last for 30+ years! We can go over the benefits of dental implants in Fort Worth in greater detail during your consultation, but here’s a basic summary of how this treatment can improve your life:
Many people who wear traditional dentures believe their prosthetics limit their ability to enjoy life to the fullest. Some of the lifestyle benefits they offer include:
- Eat what you want – Because dental implants replace the teeth’s roots underneath the gums, their biting force is comparable to that of your natural teeth. You’ll be able to chew virtually any food, allowing you to maintain a nutritious diet.
- Smile and speak confidently – The crown, bridge, or denture that goes on top of your implants will be custom-made to resemble the teeth you used to have. Your new teeth will also be anchored in your jaw, so you can smile and talk without worrying about them slipping out of place.
- Take care of them easily – Bridges and dentures require you to purchase and learn how to use new cleaning products. For the most part, implant restorations can be cared for like real teeth.
Dental implants in Fort Worth transform so much more than just your appearance. They actually improve your health in several ways:
- Stimulating your jawbone – After you lose a tooth, the part of the jawbone it was once connected to loses support and deteriorates. Over time, this can lead to an increased risk of further tooth loss and gum disease, as well as an aged facial appearance. Luckily, dental implants stimulate blood flow to the jaw like real teeth do.
- Preventing dental drift – If there’s a gap left behind by missing teeth, the surrounding teeth will eventually drift into the empty space, causing all sorts of problems. Dental implants keep your remaining teeth where they belong.
- Preserving your remaining teeth – Placing a bridge requires the two adjacent teeth to be filed down. Dental implants are self-supporting, so they let you retain more of your natural tooth structure.
- Avoiding serious health conditions – Studies have shown that extensive tooth loss can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and other health problems. Since dental implants mimic real teeth, it’s reasonable to assume they could mitigate these risks.
Once your implant dentist in Fort Worth places your final restoration, you can look forward to years and years of benefits. In fact, this solution has a success rate of more than 95%, even after more than a decade. Many patients are able to keep their dental implants for the rest of their life – it’s easy since they require very little maintenance!
Dental implants can also save you money in the long run. Admittedly, they have a higher initial cost than dentures or bridges, but they should never have to be replaced. Other solutions require frequent repairs, adjustments, and replacements that compound their original lower price. This makes dental implants the more cost-effective solution!
Who Dental Implants Can Help
At Harris Parkway Dental Care, we believe that no smile is too far gone to be restored. In other words, whether you’re missing one or all of your teeth, we can help you! Regardless of how many teeth you’ve lost, there’s a dental implants solution that can give you back your smile and your confidence. When you come to our Fort Worth office, we’ll evaluate you, discuss your needs and goals, and then put together a completely customized treatment plan.
Who is a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?
Missing 1 Tooth
As you might imagine, to replace a single tooth, we surgically place one dental implant below the gumline and into the jawbone. We’ll top it off with an abutment and finally, your customized dental crown. Once placed, your implant will keep surrounding teeth from drifting out of place to fill the gap. Notably, it does not require any of your existing tooth structure to be removed, like a dental bridge alone typically does.
Missing Multiple Teeth
Instead of getting a longer traditional bridge that requires the alteration of your natural teeth in order to be placed, we can put two dental implants on either side of the gap in your smile. Once they’ve fused with your jawbone and we’ve placed the abutments, we’ll be able to attach your customized dental bridge to complete your arch. Similarly, we can use just a few implants to retain a partial denture as well, according to your unique needs.
Missing All Teeth
Even if you have no natural teeth left, you don’t have to settle for an inferior smile. Rather than relying on denture adhesive and natural suction, we can secure dentures to anywhere from four to eight dental implants placed along your arch. Because they provide stimulation and blood flow to your jaw, you won’t have to worry about your cheeks gradually beginning to look sunken-in due to bone deterioration, which commonly occurs with traditional dentures.
Understanding the Cost of Dental Implants
The dental implant process is custom-tailored to each patients’ individual needs, which is why there’s no singular set cost of dental implants in Fort Worth. During your initial consultation, we’ll determine how many implants need to be placed, what type of restoration you need, and other details that determine the price of your treatment. Our team will then walk you through financial options available to you and answer any questions that you have.
Keep in mind that because dental implants have the potential to last a lifetime, they won’t need to be replaced as often as bridges and dentures – making them the more cost-effective solution in the long run.
Preliminary Treatments & Dental Implant Surgery
The majority of healthy adults make good candidates for dental implants, but many patients need preliminary procedures before moving forward with implant placement surgery. Depending on your specific needs, these treatments may include bone grafting, gum disease therapy, or even tooth extractions. Although these procedures all add to your total treatment costs, they’re worth it because they set the foundation your new teeth need to last a lifetime.
On the bright side, our team at Harris Parkway Dental Care can surgically place your implants in-house, which means you won’t have to pay an additional bill to a separate implant dentist in Fort Worth.
The Parts of Your Dental Implant
Each of the three parts of a dental implant – the implant post, the abutment, and the restoration – incurs its own cost. Generally, the restoration will have a higher price the more teeth you’re replacing; after all, a denture requires more material than a single crown. The implant posts and abutments can come from various manufacturers, and we’ll be transparent as to which type that we select for you and why.
How Dental Implants Can Save You Money
It’s true that dentures and dental bridges cost less initially, so it may be tempting to choose them over implants. However, these prosthetics will have to be repaired and replaced frequently. Not to mention, you’ll have to routinely purchase specialized cleaning supplies and adhesives. Both of these can really add up over the years.
Dental implants in Fort Worth are the smarter long-term investment. They don’t require any specific maintenance products and they can last for decades, making them a one-time cost that should pay for itself several times over.
Does My Dental Insurance Cover Dental Implants?
Most dental insurance providers do NOT cover dental implants, but that’s not always the case. Our team is happy to look over your plan and maximize your benefits. We even offer in-network savings for patients with Delta Dental insurance.
Making Dental Implants Affordable
To ensure that your new pearly whites are affordable, Harris Parkway Dental Care has partnered with CareCredit and Compassionate Finance. Both of these financiers provide flexible payment options for fitting the cost of your dental implants into your budget.
Dental Implant FAQs
If you’re looking for the closest alternative to your natural teeth, there’s nothing better to rebuild your smile with than dental implants in Fort Worth. However, it’s likely that you have some questions that need answers before you feel ready to commit to this potentially life-changing treatment. We’ll be more than happy to answer all your questions during your initial consultation, but in the meantime, we’ve gathered some of the most common questions we get below. If you don’t see the information you’re looking for, don’t hesitate to give us a call and we’ll be happy to help!
Does Getting Dental Implants Hurt?
Instead of referring you to an outside specialist for the placement portion of your dental implant treatment, Harris Parkway Dental Care is proud to offer start-to-finish convenience. This means that you’ll have your implants placed by a dental team you already know and trust! Our team is always focused on your comfort, and we use safe and reliable numbing medication to ensure your procedure goes as smoothly as possible. Most patients are pleasantly surprised to find that dental implant surgery is much more comfortable than they originally anticipated.
Can Dental Implants Fail?
Dental implants boast an impressive success rate of over 95%, even 10 years after placement! With the proper care, they should stay in place for a lifetime. However, there is a remote possibility for dental implant failure, especially if you don’t take the right precautions. Once your dental implants are in place, it’s essential to practice great oral hygiene and break bad chewing habits to maximize your chances of long-term success. If your dental implant ever begins to feel sensitive, painful, or loose, contact us right away so we can investigate and make sure your new smile stays healthy.
Am I Too Young or Old to Get Dental Implants?
Since dental implants rely on the jawbone for support, we typically don’t recommend them for teenagers under the age of 18, since their jawbone is still developing. However, there is no upper age limit! As long as you are well enough to undergo placement surgery, have good oral health, and your jawbone is dense enough, you can be considered a good candidate for dental implants no matter how old you are! It’s true that the older you are the more likely you are to have issues that prevent you from qualifying for dental implants right away, but we offer a variety of preliminary treatments that can help you get on track for a new smile!
What Do Dental Implants Feel Like?
Dental implants are the only tooth replacement option to restore both the roots and the crown of a missing tooth. However, there is one part they can’t replace: the tooth’s nerve. When you get dental implants, you will still be able to detect sensations like temperature and pressure near your new tooth. This information is gleaned not from the implant itself, but the healthy natural tissues surrounding it. Other than that however, your dental implant should feel just like a natural tooth. In fact, dental implants are so comfortable and lifelike that you may even forget they’re there from time to time!
Maintaining & Caring For Your Dental Implants
Dental implants are designed to last 30 years or longer as long as you commit to properly maintaining them. Although they cannot decay, it is imperative that you take care of your smile just as if you still had all your natural, healthy teeth. Poor gum health and serious damage can leave you spending additional time and money trying to fix a failed implant, so if you want to make the most of your initial investment, you’ll want to make sure you listen closely as our team shares helpful tips for optimal dental implant care in Fort Worth.
Making Oral Hygiene a Priority
If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a million times – oral hygiene is important! Practicing good dental habits at home will put your smile on the right path. How? Brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes eliminates bacteria that is known to build up on your teeth and gums. Flossing at least once a day removes food particles and plaque from between teeth, minimizing your risk for cavities. And rinsing with an antiseptic mouthwash helps to flush out anything brushing and flossing missed. These simple steps make it possible to keep your teeth and gums healthy and strong, which, in turn, is good news for your dental implants in Fort Worth.
Eating a Healthy Diet
Leafy greens, lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, and foods high in calcium and Vitamin C will help to strengthen your tooth enamel and improve your gum health. Because your dental implants allow you to consume more nutrient-rich foods, you can expect to see a difference in more than just your waistline but also your smile. While a cookie or small bag of chips is fine in moderation, you don’t want to make these a normal part of your daily diet, as they will only produce more bad bacteria and leave your teeth and gums vulnerable to decay and disease, which can ultimately lead to dental implant failure.
Breaking Bad Habits
If you are a smoker, it’s best that you quit before you ever receive your dental implants. Because this habit weakens the immune system, your titanium posts may never fully fuse with the bone, causing them to fail. Also, if you eat ice, bite your fingernails, chew on pens or pencils, or use your teeth as tools, you run the risk of severely damaging your natural teeth as well as your dental implants. A break or crack can be an unfortunate reality should you choose to continue practicing your bad habits. When seeing an emergency dentist for help, you’ll likely pay more to treat a problem that could have been avoided in the first place. With dental implants, make sure you swap out your unhealthy habits for ones that don’t affect your oral and overall health.
Protecting Your Dental Implants
Protecting your smile is key if you want to maintain a beautiful, healthy, and younger-looking appearance. A customized mouthguard can be one of your greatest investments after receiving dental implants, especially if you enjoy playing sports. It can also be helpful if you are prone to grinding or clenching your teeth while you sleep (bruxism). These unique devices fit comfortably inside your mouth and minimize the potential damage caused to teeth and gums, which can be an essential method to safeguarding your investment in your smile.
Scheduling Regular Dental Checkups
Your implant dentist in Fort Worth is your greatest ally. Not only will we remain by your side throughout the placement and restorative process, but we’ll continue to monitor and ensure your dental implants are in optimal condition. By checking your teeth and gums every six months, we can identify any potential problems early on and avoid more serious or complex treatments down the road. Not to mention, we will make sure your real and artificial look and feel their best before you leave each appointment, giving you fresher breath and greater confidence after every visit.
Dental Implant Post-Op Instructions
After your dental implant placement surgery, you will have to go through a recovery period — but there is no need to worry. Most patients heal without any complications or serious side effects. Below, we share some practical dental implant post-op instructions in Fort Worth that will promote your comfort as your mouth and body recover from your procedure.
What to Do Directly After Dental Implant Surgery
Blood clots should form at your surgical sites. They are an important part of your body’s healing process, so you should take steps to protect them. Here are some guidelines to that end:
- Do not spit. Instead, swallow excess saliva or use tissues to absorb it.
- Do not use drinking straws. The suction action could dislodge the clots.
- Do not smoke. Smoking interferes with healing and might dislodge your blood clots.
- Do not touch your surgical sites. It may be tempting to touch the places where your dental implants in Fort Worth were inserted, but you should keep your fingers and your tongue away from them.
Common Side Effects
After your surgery, you might experience:
- Intermittent bleeding
- General discomfort
Most side effects go away within a few days to a few weeks. Taking painkillers, using cold compresses, and using gauze to absorb blood can help to keep you comfortable. You should also listen to your body and get plenty of rest. If you experience any severe or prolonged side effects, call your implant dentist in Fort Worth right away.
At first, it would be wise to stick to a no-chew diet, which can include things like yogurt, smoothies, and applesauce. Later, you can move onto a fork-tender diet and eat anything that is easy to cut with the side of a fork. Meatloaf, scrambled eggs, and pasta usually fall into this category. After the soft tissues in your mouth have healed, you may be able to resume eating most foods, but it would be wise to continue to avoid anything hard or crunchy that might irritate your gums.
Health & Oral Hygiene
The day after your surgery, you can brush and floss like normal, but you should be extra gentle around your surgical sites. Rinsing with saltwater a few times each day can manage swelling and inflammation. If you have a prescription mouthwash, be sure to use it as directed. If you choose to use a nonprescription mouthwash, avoid products that contain a high level of alcohol.
What to Do After Your New Teeth Are Attached
Once we place your crown, bridge, or denture on your dental implants, you might experience a little tenderness in your gums. However, there should be no bleeding or downtime. You will be able to use your new teeth right away! If you have any questions or concerns as you are adjusting to your new smile, give us a call.
Dental Implant Failure & Salvage
A failed dental implant in Fort Worth is highly unlikely, but it’s not impossible. Unfortunately, when it comes to oral surgery of any kind, there are potential risks and complications involved. However, when dental implant failure occurs, it’s usually because of an infection or serious trauma. The good news is our team at Harris Parkway Dental Care is here to provide dental implant salvage to save and restore your smile should you be faced with this rare situation.