Tooth loss can come with many painful consequences, including difficulty eating and unwanted changes to your facial appearance and profile. However, dental implant surgery can replace lost teeth, restoring function with very attractive results. Dental implant surgery does have a few prerequisites, however. A consultation with an experienced and qualified oral and maxillofacial surgeon, like Dr. John P. Freeman, is necessary for getting safe and outstanding results. During this phase of treatment, Dr. Freeman can help ensure that you have enough jaw bone mass to proceed with dental implants, for example.

Dental implants are durable and long-lasting threaded posts that act as tooth roots. They are securely embedded into your jaw bone and allow for the application of artificial teeth later, which can attractively complete your look and restore natural function. Dental implants provide many advantages when compared to alternative dental restoration procedures, especially where tooth loss has been significant. The surgery is also extremely versatile, which gives Dr. Freeman the ability to restore a variety of issues effectively with carefully tailored results.

Do I need dental implants?

Tooth loss can be repaired in many ways and among the most effective remedies are dental implants. Dental implants are titanium or zirconia threaded roots which securely adhere to your jaw bone, much like the roots of your natural teeth, making them a highly durable and long-lasting approach to tooth restoration that also enhances the health of your jaw bone. Because these devices are so similar to your natural teeth, they can allow you to avoid many of the problems posed by alternative solutions, such as noise, slippage or additional bone damage. Dental implants are not the right choice for every patient but, for the right patient, they can be an ideal way to restore healthy teeth and jaw bone and maintain a natural and attractive appearance. If you have ever been told you are not a candidate for implants, call the office of Dr. John Freeman.

Consider a consultation to explore dental implants if you have any of the following concerns:

  • You are missing one or more teeth
  • You don’t want or can’t have dentures
  • Your teeth problems are affecting your speech
  • You are interested in immediate implant placement with extraction
  • You are interested in teeth in a day or all on four
  • You are interested in graftless implant techniques that utilize Zygoma implants

The Importance of the Dental Implant Consultation

Dental implant surgery is complex and, to have a successful surgery, you need to have a full and complete evaluation that takes your entire dental structure into consideration. You will enjoy safe, comprehensive and long-lasting results only when you consult with and have treatment performed by a highly-experienced and qualified oral and maxillofacial surgeon, like Dr. John P. Freeman.

What will happen during my dental implant procedure?

For some patients, all of the surgical procedures can be done in one phase and you may be ready for your crown in as little as three months. For others, additional surgical procedures may be needed, extending treatment time. The steps involved often include:

  • Removal of any unhealthy teeth
  • Preparation of the jawbone through bone grafting, if necessary
  • Placement of your dental implants
  • Recovery and bone growth
  • Placement of your abutments (crown posts)
  • Placement of your new teeth

Depending on which steps your procedure requires, the complete dental implant process can take several months to complete. However, each stage ensures the success of the following one and a steady progression towards your goals.

Do I need to have bone grafts first?

If you have substantial jaw bone loss where you plan to have implants, you may need to have bone grafts first and wait for enough bone to grow to sustain your new teeth. Bone grafts will add to your bone mass and also help new bone to grow, giving you the stable foundation you need for your implants to be secure and last. Your implants will also promote new bone growth, extending your results. Bone growth is gradual, so you may have to wait before continuing your treatment, however. Dr. Freeman will outline all your bone graft options during your consultation.

Placement of Your Implants

Dr. Freeman must open the gums or gingiva to place your dental implant. With the gum open, he will then drill into the jaw bone and place the dental implant post securely, ensuring the integrity of the entire structure later. You will receive your new teeth immediately, in some cases. However, in other cases, you may elect to have a removal appliance placed if the teeth being replaced are in a visible area.

Osseointegration — the fusion of your bone with your implant

Gradually your jaw bone will grow around and fuse with your new implant, which will make your new teeth highly secure later. This process usually takes 3 months to complete, depending on your initial bone health.

Placement of Your Abutments

Once Dr. Freeman has verified that osseointegration is complete, you will now be ready to have a custom abutment and crown fabricated by your general dentist. Your abutment attaches to the implant previously placed and provides a stable base to which your crown can be secured. In some cases, Dr. Freeman will need to open the gum again to expose the implant for crown and abutment fabrication. After your gums have had time to heal — usually about two weeks — you can proceed to having your new teeth.

Recovering from Your Dental Implant Surgery

Most dental implant surgeries can be done in one stage but, for others, additional surgeries may be necessary. However, most patients find that recovering from each stage of surgery is quite tolerable, with pain and swelling easily managed with medication.

You will have appropriate pain medications and antibiotics prescribed at each stage of treatment. Also, be prepared to eat soft foods temporarily to aid your comfort.

During recovery, patients can expect

  • Mild swelling of the cheek and gums
  • Some bruising of the cheek and gums
  • Tenderness surrounding the implant area
  • Minor but temporary bleeding

The Outstanding Results Dental Implants Offer

Dental implants offer high-quality, extremely natural results that function almost identically to your original teeth. However, like your original teeth, you will need to maintain good oral hygiene to protect and extend your results. Brushing and flossing are critical to maintaining the health of your gums and adjacent teeth and well-cared for teeth also ensure your jaw bone remains in optimal health. Regular dentist visits will further protect your teeth, gums and jaw, address new problems as they arise and prevent future problems from occurring. Avoiding unnecessary strain on your implants — such as crunching ice — can also safeguard your new and original teeth. Your implants can easily last for years if you adopt a sensibly dental hygiene routine and take everyday precautions.

Dental implants performed by qualified and experienced oral and maxillofacial surgeon Dr. John P. Freeman can give you outstanding results!

Tooth loss can be devastating but it doesn’t have to be. Dental implants can give you a safe, long-lasting and satisfying way to restore lost teeth, making eating a joy again and giving you a smile you’ll be happy to see every day in the mirror. Oral and maxillofacial surgeon Dr. John P. Freeman focuses on safe, high-quality results in less time with less surgery. Some patients can have their final set of teeth in three months.

Your results begin with an in-person consultation with Dr. John P. Freeman, who will carefully assess your needs and prepare problem areas for comprehensive treatment. The sooner you have your consultation, the sooner you can have teeth that look, feel and function much like your original teeth — perhaps even better.

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Call 281-599-9445 today to schedule your in-person consultation with Dr. John P. Freeman and take a step closer to the comfort and smile you deserve!

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