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Dental Implants – Milwaukee, WI

The Best Solution for Tooth Replacement

When a tooth is lost, you don’t just lose the visible part in your smile, but also the underlying tooth root, which is responsible for supporting your jawbone. This is why we often recommend dental implants in Milwaukee, WI for our patients, as they are the only option that replaces your tooth’s missing crown and root. Once placed, you can expect optimal function and the best esthetics available in dentistry to date. To schedule your very first consultation, give Sweet Smiles Family Dentistry a call!

Why Choose Sweet Smiles Family Dentistry for Dental Implants?

What Are Dental Implants?

model of how dental implants in Milwaukee work

Dental implants are made up of three parts, but a titanium post that acts as the new tooth root is technically the only portion of the overall replacement that is considered the “implant.” The other components include the restoration (dental crown, bridge, or denture) that fills the gap in your smile and the abutment (metal attachment) that connects it to the implant. The implant is typically made with titanium because of its strength and biocompatible properties, meaning that it can effectively integrate with your mouth’s tissues to create a strong and stable hold. The end result is a reliable, long-lasting solution that can replace any number of missing teeth.

The 4-Step Dental Implant Process

dentist showing a patient a model of a dental implant

The dental implant process can vary slightly from patient to patient. It begins with a consultation, wherein we map out your unique treatment plan. Later, you undergo a minimally invasive surgery, wherein we place the dental implants into your jawbone. After your mouth has had sufficient time to heal, we’ll design a custom crown, bridge, or denture to go on top of your dental implants. The entire process may take several months from beginning to end, but it is a worthwhile journey!

Many dental offices offer dental implants, but they ask patients to go to a specialist just to have the surgical portion of the treatment performed. Instead of traveling between dental offices and speaking to multiple doctors, you can get your dental implants placed and restored entirely at Sweet Smiles Family Dentistry. This makes the process much more convenient and stress-free from start to finish.

Initial Dental Implant Consultation

patient at a dental implant consultation

During your dental implant consultation, we will use imaging technology to get a look beneath your gumline. We will also assess the extent of your tooth loss and the health of your remaining natural teeth. After we have a chance to evaluate the information we gather, we’ll let you know whether you are a candidate for dental implants and what your treatment journey may involve. Feel free to ask questions during your consultation — you are an important part of your dental team!

Dental Implant Surgery

dental implant being placed in the lower jaw

The dental implant surgery usually doesn’t take more than a couple of hours. During it, we create small incisions in the gums and then insert the implants into the jawbone. Then we close the incisions and send you home to begin the healing process.

We make every effort to ensure patient comfort during the implant placement surgery. Local anesthesia, as well as sedation, can help you to stay calm, relaxed, and pain-free while we are working in your mouth.

Dental Implant Osseointegration/Abutment

X-ray of a patient with a dental implant

Once the implants are in your jawbone, a process known as osseointegration will begin. Essentially, this means that your jawbone will actually fuse with the implants, enabling them to serve as the sturdiest base possible for your replacement teeth. Osseointegration usually takes at least three to six months. Following osseointegration, you’ll undergo a second minor surgery, wherein we will attach small connector pieces, called abutments, to the tops of your implants.

Delivery of Dental Implant Restorations

patient with dental implants admiring her new teeth in a mirror

Dental implant restorations are the crowns, bridges, and dentures that replace the visible portions of your lost teeth. When you are ready to receive your restorations, your dentist will carefully design them with the goal of making them as functional and aesthetically pleasing as possible. After we attach them to your implants, you can begin to enjoy all the benefits of your renewed smile!

Benefits of Dental Implants

couple smiling outside

The most notable benefits of dental implants are their durability and longevity. On average, dental implants are designed to last between 30 years and a lifetime, making them more reliable than bridges and dentures. Additionally, dental implants restore your biting force and keep your jawbone strong moving forward. This helps you eat the foods you want and maintain the overall shape of your face. If you want the most comprehensive solution for replacing teeth, dental implants are by far the best option.

Improved Comfort

smiling woman in a gray shirt standing with her arms crossed

Out of all the forms of tooth replacement available, dental implants come the closest to feeling like your natural pearly whites. This is due to a process called osseointegration, which involves the implant posts fully fusing with the jawbone, enabling them to act as replacement roots for your lost teeth. Essentially, the implants become a part of your own anatomy. Not only does this process make implants incredibly stable, but they’ll feel so natural that you might forget you even have implants!

Flawless Appearance

woman with dental implants in Milwaukee grinning from ear to ear

Dental implants don’t just feel natural; they look amazing, too. The titanium posts are hidden beneath your gumline, but they are topped with a personalized restoration. You might receive a dental crown, bridge, or denture, depending on how many teeth you need to replace. This restoration is made of lifelike, tooth-colored materials that resemble your natural smile to a tee. You can smile confidently knowing that onlookers won’t be able to tell the difference between your implants and your natural teeth.

Your pearly whites aren’t the only part of your appearance that can benefit from dental implants. After tooth loss, your jawbone normally starts shrinking because of a lack of stimulation from your teeth’s roots. However, dental implants stimulate the jawbone. This keeps it strong enough to support your facial structures and prevent sagging and wrinkling that age you prematurely. You can stay looking young and vibrant for years to come!

Restored Chewing Power

close-up of a person biting into a red apple

Traditional dentures often present problems while eating, such as slipping or even falling out entirely. You might have a hard time eating steak or other tough foods. Prosthetic teeth secured by dental implants replenish most of the biting and chewing power of your original teeth, allowing you to enjoy a diet of various healthy foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables with ease.

Clear Speech

smiling man sitting at a table

Another drawback of conventional dentures is that if they don’t fit properly, they may slip around and cause you to slur your words or make an embarrassing whistling sound. Over the years, natural changes in your mouth result in dentures not fitting as snugly as they once did, increasing the risk of slippage. Because dental implants hold your teeth firmly in place, such changes won’t occur, letting you speak clearly.

Unparalleled Longevity

couple cooking in their kitchen

Unlike other tooth replacements, dental implants are designed to last more than 30 years. With the right oral hygiene routine and regular dental checkups, your new smile could even last a lifetime!

Who Dental Implants Can Help

woman talking to her dentist

Dental implants are ideal for most adults, including those who have had missing teeth for a long time. It’s also perfect for those who are tired of using a denture that no longer fits properly. Below, you’ll find that dental implants can effectively replace single, multiple, or all teeth in a given arch with relative ease. As long as you have good oral and overall health and enough jawbone tissue, you should be a viable candidate to receive dental implants. During your initial consultation with your dental implant dentist in Milwaukee, we will examine your smile to determine if can freely move forward with dental implant surgery or if you require preliminary treatment. No matter how we proceed, you can expect a beautiful, healthy, and fully functional smile in the end.

Who is a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?

Woman during consultation in Milwaukee

If you are missing any number of teeth, there is a good chance you’ll be eligible to receive dental implants in Milwaukee. Also, if you’re tired of wearing dentures because of their time-consuming maintenance and instability, you will find permanent prosthetics to give you the look and function you desire.

During your consultation with an implant dentist in Milwaukee, you can expect our team to consider the following factors when determining how to proceed:

  • You must have good oral health, which means no signs of gum disease or tooth decay. Otherwise, you’ll need periodontal therapy or tooth extraction (if severe enough).
  • You must be in optimal overall health, as dental implant placement requires minor oral surgery.
  • You must have enough jawbone to support your implants. If you do not, you’ll need either bone grafting or All-On-4 implants.

Tooth loss comes in all types. Fortunately, dental implants are considered to be the gold standard for tooth replacement.

Missing One Tooth

single dental implant with a crown

Even one missing tooth can wreak havoc on your ability to eat, speak, and smile. Although more than 120 million Americans are living with at least one missing tooth, you can take yourself out of that grouping by choosing dental implants. Replacing a single tooth only requires one implant post topped with metal abutment and a customized porcelain crown. We use porcelain for dental implant crowns because it offers long-term durability while still providing optimal esthetics. This is a more conservative alternative to getting a traditional bridge, which requires the removal of nearby tooth enamel to place.

Missing Multiple Teeth

dental bridge on top of two dental implants

To replace multiple teeth at a time, we can attach a bridge to a pair of implants. This bridge is specifically customized to fit with dental implants and requires no removal of existing tooth enamel. Overall, dental implants are strong enough to hold the restoration and last for several decades. But even if your teeth are not consecutively missing, we can place an implant partial that works similar to a puzzle piece.

Missing All Teeth

full denture on top of four dental implants

If you need to replace all of your upper or lower teeth, we can place a series of dental implants throughout your jaw so it can hold an implant denture. Implant dentures are smaller, stronger, and fit more comfortably compared to traditional removable prosthetics. They’ll also strengthen your jawbone by providing continuous stimulation and make it possible for you to eat the foods you love without worrying about your prosthetics slipping or falling out of place.

Alternatively, if you have minimal jawbone and prefer to avoid bone grafting, we may be able to use All-On-4 implants. By using only four dental implant posts, we can strategically place and align them along the arch in your mouth for maximum support. We will then place a custom denture on top of your implant posts to provide a secure, functional, and beautiful new smile.

Learn More About All-on-4

Understanding the Cost of Dental Implants

man talking to his dentist

The total cost of your dental implant treatment will largely depend on your specific needs. When replacing teeth, we have to consider the number and type of missing teeth, the location of the teeth, the volume of your jawbone tissue, and whether or not preparatory treatments are needed beforehand. Regardless, you can expect your dental implants to be more cost-effective than other methods because of their longevity and functionality.

Types of Dental Implants

three dental implants lying on a flat surface

Every patient has a unique smile and thus unique needs when it comes to dental implants. The number of implants required to restore your smile will influence the final cost of treatment.

The types of dental implants include:

  • Single Tooth Implant – A single implant topped with a custom crown.
  • Implant Bridge – A bridge retained by several strategically placed dental implants can replace several consecutive missing teeth.
  • Implant Denture – Just four to six implants can secure a full denture and replace an entire row of teeth.

What Are the Stages of Dental Implant Treatment?

dentist placing a crown on top of a dental implant model

Dental implant treatment typically requires several trips to our office in Milwaukee. Each of the following stages is an important step toward your new smile and contributes to the overall cost of treatment:

  • Initial Consultation – Your dentist will carefully examine your teeth, gums, and mouth to determine if you are a good candidate for dental implants. If you need additional procedures to first improve your oral health or jawbone density, these may lead to a greater final cost.
  • Implant Placement – The implant is surgically inserted into the jawbone beneath the gums.
  • Healing Process – The implants will fuse with the surrounding bone over the course of several months.
  • Abutment Placement – Your dentist may place an abutment on top of your implant, which will help secure a dental prosthesis to the implant.
  • Smile Restoration – Once fully healed, your dentist will secure a new dental crown, bridge, or denture onto your implants, effectively restoring your dental function and appearance.

Are Dental Implants Worth the Investment?

woman showing off her smile

Not only are dental implants among the most popular and effective tooth replacement solutions available today, but they are often the most economical as well! While the initial cost of implants may be higher than other restorative treatments, dental implants can easily last for decades with proper care. By not having to buy new replacement dentures or bridges every few years, you may actually end up saving money in the long term by investing in dental implants.

Does My Dental Insurance Cover Dental Implants?

dental insurance form

Unfortunately, most dental insurance plans do not cover dental implant treatment. However, you may be able to use your insurance benefits to reduce some related costs, such as the cost of a bone graft of gum disease therapy. Worried about paying for dental implants? At Sweet Smiles Family Dentistry, we are proud to partner with CareCredit, a dental financing organization that can break up the cost of your implant treatment into smaller monthly installments that fit comfortably into your budget.

Dental Implant FAQs

woman looking her smile in a mirror

As you can see, dental implants offer countless benefits compared with other methods of replacing lost teeth. However, because they can be quite the investment, it’s important that you’re armed with all the knowledge you can acquire before going through with the procedure. That’s why we’ve answered some of our most frequently asked questions about dental implants below. If you still have a question about implants, feel free to give us a call and ask away!

Why Do I Need a Bone Graft Before Getting Dental Implants?

The amount of jawbone density a patient has is a critical factor in determining whether their dental implants will be successful. If your jawbone is not thick enough to accommodate implants, then you’re significantly more likely to experience implant failure, meaning your implant placement procedure was all for nothing. Unfortunately, jawbone deterioration is common after you’ve lost even one tooth.

The good news is that even if you have a weak jawbone, you can still be a candidate for dental implants. You may just have to undergo a bone graft first. With this procedure, we graft artificial bone material onto your jawbone and let it fuse with your natural bone over the next few months. It may add some time to your overall implant journey, but it’s worth it to create a sturdy foundation for your new smile.

Does Getting Dental Implants Hurt?

Many of our patients go into the procedure expecting it to hurt, but are pleasantly surprised when they only experience minimal discomfort. Our team uses a local anesthetic to numb your mouth before placing implants. If you’ve had a tooth extracted, you can expect around that same level of comfort.

Because getting implants involves a type of oral surgery, you’ll likely feel some soreness and swelling for a few days afterward. As long as you take prescribed pain medication as directed, you should recover just fine.

Can I Return to Work After Getting Dental Implants Placed?

It depends on how complex your surgery is. After relatively small cases, such as receiving a single implant, some of our patients feel well enough to resume their days as normal after their procedure. However, in more complex cases involving multiple implants being placed at once, we typically recommend taking the next two to three days to rest. We can discuss an approximate recovery timeline at your consultation.

I Currently Smoke. Can I Still Get Dental Implants?

Yes, but not without certain risks. Whether you smoke it or chew it, using tobacco slows down the oral healing process, which is crucial to long-term dental implant success. Additionally, tobacco hinders your body’s ability to fight off infections, which may compromise your implants down the road.

In general, we suggest refraining from smoking or chewing tobacco for at least two weeks prior to getting your implants placed, and for several months afterwards so that you don’t disrupt healing. In fact, if you’ve been looking for a reason to quit smoking, getting dental implants would be it. If you need help kicking the habit, our dentists have plenty of resources that can help you.

Maintaining & Caring for Your Dental Implants

man in a blue polo shirt standing outside

One of the most amazing benefits of dental implants is their potential for longevity. When properly maintained, your new teeth can last upwards of 30 years, possibly even for the rest of your life! However, this is only possible with the right dental implant aftercare. On the bright side, caring for dental implants is not that different from caring for the pearly whites you were born with. Keep reading below to learn some easy tips to help your new smile last a lifetime.

Make Oral Hygiene A Priority 

woman putting toothpaste onto an electric toothbrush

Infection of the gums supporting your implant is one of the most common causes of implant failure. Fortunately, preventing this is fairly easy. Brush your implant restoration as you would a natural tooth. Floss around the restoration at least once a day. You might have to use a water flosser to effectively remove food particles and plaque from the area. It also helps to rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash daily. This can clean areas of your mouth that your toothbrush and floss can’t reach.

Protect Your Dental Implants

person holding a blue mouthguard in their hand

If you play sports, or even if you engage in solo activities like cycling or jogging, it’s always best to wear a mouthguard to protect your implants as well as your remaining teeth from injury. While mouthguards are sold for cheap at most sporting goods stores, you’re much better off investing in a custom-made one from our office. Because it will fit you more snugly, it will both feel more comfortable and provide a greater level of protection.

People who grind their teeth at night, a condition known as bruxism, should also protect their teeth. The pressure of nightly clenching and grinding can not only wear down or chip the enamel of your natural teeth, but it can place stress on your implants and damage them. We can create a custom nightguard to provide cushioning between your upper and lower jaws.

Lastly, avoid using your teeth for anything other than biting or chewing. It may be tempting to use your teeth to open stubborn packaging or hold extra grocery bags, but doing so could seriously hurt your oral health.

Schedule Regular Recall Visits

date of a dentist appointment circled on a calendar

We typically recommend that patients with dental implants visit a dentist for checkups at least three or four times a year, especially in the first year after receiving implants. This way, we can make sure everything is going as it should. Also, at these appointments, we can examine your remaining teeth and gums to detect any problem areas and tackle them while treatment is still relatively easy.

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