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Posts for tag: Dental Implant

By Brenna Hamrick-Stotts, DDS, Inc.
June 29, 2019
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: smoking   Dental Implant  
SmokingCouldShortenYourImplantsLongevity

Although costly in the beginning, dental implants often turn out to be the least expensive tooth replacement option. That's because their enviable record for longevity often outpaces dentures or bridges. Over the long-term you might spend less for implants than these other restorations.

But even with the high success rate of dental implants (greater than 95% survive the ten-year mark), we can't guarantee they won't fail. And if you're a tobacco smoker, the risk of failure might be even higher. One study, for example, found early implant failures were twice the rate for smokers over non-smokers. Although implant failures overall are low, smoking seems to be a factor in those that do.

There are a number of reasons to account for this. For one thing, inhaled smoke can damage salivary glands, reducing the flow of this important fluid. Saliva helps control bacterial growth and neutralize mouth acid, so without it you're more susceptible to tooth decay or periodontal (gum) disease. Either infection could ultimately weaken implant-supporting bone.

The nicotine in tobacco can also restrict oral blood vessels and lower their ability to supply antibodies and nutrients to the teeth and gums. This slows healing, which could have one particular effect on implant durability.

During the intervening weeks between implant placement and crown attachment, the implant's titanium post attracts bone cells that grow and adhere to its surface. The effects of nicotine on healing, especially right after implant surgery, can interfere with this integration process so that the implant doesn't anchor in the bone as well as it should.

If you're a smoker, you can increase your chances of implant success—and have a healthier mouth overall—by quitting smoking beforehand with the help of a cessation program. Or at the least, consider stopping smoking for one week before implant surgery and for two weeks afterward.

And be sure to brush and floss your teeth daily and visit your dentist regularly to keep your teeth and gums as healthy as possible. Stopping smoking and practicing effective oral hygiene could make a big difference in the success or failure of your implant.

If you would like more information on smoking and your dental health, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Dental Implants & Smoking.”

By Brenna Hamrick-Stotts, DDS, Inc
February 06, 2019
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Dental Implant  

Dental implants can replace missing and extracted teeth. Whether you need to replace just one tooth or multiple teeth, dental implants are a durable and long-lasting tooth replacement option. When replacing a single tooth, a dental implant can be topped with a dental crown. When replacing multiple teeth, dental implants can be used to support bridgework or overdentures. A dentist can help determine if dental implants are right for you. Dr. Brenna Hamrick-Stotts is your Redlands, CA dentist for dental implants.

What are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are hypoallergenic metal screws placed below the gum line. They act as artificial tooth roots by anchoring and supporting dental crowns, bridgework, or overdentures. Dental implants are inserted into the jawbone through a minor surgical procedure. Once the gums have healed from the procedure, the implants can be topped with the appropriate type of replacement teeth. At that point, only the artificial teeth will be visible.

There must be enough bone in the jaw area to support the placement of the dental implants. Your Redlands dentist can utilize x-ray technology to determine if you are a good candidate for dental implants. If so, the dentist can help you decide if dental implants are the right tooth replacement option for you.

Benefits of Dental Implants

Dental implants offer several benefits that extend beyond restoration of your smile. Other benefits of dental implants include providing support for facial muscles, which can sag and droop when teeth are missing and affect the shape of the face; improving speech which can be affected when teeth are missing as the gaps alter tongue placement when talking; and redistributing biting and chewing functions evenly across a full set of teeth, which reduces wear and tear on the teeth that had previously been doing all the work.

Dental implants are a durable and long lasting method for replacing teeth that are missing or have been extracted. A dentist can determine if you are a good candidate for dental implants and help you decide if they are the right choice for you. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Hamrick-Stotts, your Redlands, CA dentist, call the office at (909) 793-9711.