Summerwood Aesthetic Dentistry
Julie A. Spaniel DDS

Dental Implantsin Portland

Dental Implants Portland

Considered by many dentists to be the most long-lasting solution to missing teeth, dental implants offer a second chance at a healthy, functional and beautiful smile. Crafted using strong and durable materials and with a patient’s unique specifications in mind, dental implants enable patients to chew and speak normally, and smile confidently again.

Dental implants consist of a titanium post surgically inserted into the jaw for optimal stability and an artificial tooth or teeth placed on top of the post. Successful placement and restoration of dental implants requires the training and skill of an expert team. Dr. Julie Spaniel is a restorative dentist who has years of experience designing and placing strong and lifelike dental restorations. She regularly collaborates with oral surgeons that place implants to make the entire dental implant process as smooth and successful as possible.

Find out if dental implants can restore your oral health and smile by scheduling a consultation with Summerwood Aesthetic Dentistry.

Dental Implant Benefits

Dental implants offer a number of advantages for tooth replacement. The placement of the titanium post allows the artificial tooth to remain in place, allowing you to eat, chew and speak comfortably. Dental implants also stimulate the jaw bone, preserving a natural facial appearance. Filling in gaps left by missing teeth prevents the surrounding teeth from drifting. Implants also lower the risk of decay and other dental issues associated with missing teeth. Dental implants are fabricated using natural-looking materials, ensuring a beautiful and seamless smile.

Dental implants can be used to support one, several or a full arch of teeth. Dr. Spaniel can discuss your options with you in detail upon evaluating your oral health, dental needs and goals.

Dental Implant Placement Process

Placing and restoring dental implants is split up into three stages. The first stage is performed by an oral surgeon who surgically inserts the implant post or posts into the jawbone. During the second stage, the jawbone is left to heal and fuse together with the implant post. This stage, called osseointegration, takes approximately three to six months to complete and is crucial to ensure a stable foundation for the artificial tooth or teeth that will be placed on top of the post.

Once the post and jawbone have fused together properly, the third restorative phase occurs. During implant restoration, Dr. Spaniel will cover the top of the implant post with a connector piece (or abutment) and place the artificial tooth on top. The artificial tooth is crafted to resemble the surrounding teeth in color, shape and size. The dentist will check your bite to ensure a perfect fit. Any last-minute adjustments to the restoration will be made before it is buffed and polished for a seamless and beautiful look.

Implant Dentistry Portland

Dental implants can last for many years, but good oral hygiene is crucial. In fact, not brushing and flossing properly is a leading cause of implant failure. Bad lifestyle habits such as smoking can also lead to complications with dental implants. Routine checkups with Dr. Spaniel are important so she can make sure your implants are functioning properly.

Dental Implant Recovery

You may notice discomfort for about one week after the post is implanted into your jawbone. You may apply an icepack to your face to calm the swelling. Dr. Spaniel will prescribe medication to help relieve any lingering pain. You should amend your diet during the initial days to focus on soft, mild-temperature foods that do not aggravate your healing gums.

Dental Implant Costs

Because Dr. Spaniel offers different types of implants, costs can vary. You will receive a quote following a consultation so that you know what to expect. Many dental insurance plans cover at least some of the cost of a dental implant; check your policy to determine what you are entitled to.  

Why Do Adult Teeth Fall Out?

You may lose an adult tooth for one of several reasons, which include:

Dental Implant Recovery
  • Infection: A tooth that has decayed past the point of being improved with a root canal may no longer be able to survive on its own in your mouth.
  • Gum Disease: In later stages of periodontitis, your gums can recede, weakening the bones that keep your teeth in place. Without protection, teeth can fall out.
  • Injury: An accident or forceful blow to the head can cause teeth to break beyond repair. Teeth that can no longer function need to be extracted and replaced.
  • Malnutrition: Teeth thrive on minerals like calcium, potassium, vitamin C, and vitamin D. Insufficient vitamins and minerals in your diet may leave your teeth more susceptible to decay and becoming loose.

Bone Grafting

Before Dr. Spaniel can insert an implant, you must have enough jawbone tissue in the area where the tooth is being added to support the prosthetic. Unfortunately, without tooth roots to stimulate the bone, the jawbone weakens over time. Hence, if you leave a vacant space in your smile for too long, your bone may erode.

Bone grafting can address this problem by transplanting donor bone so that your mouth can support an implant. Over the course of multiple months, this donor bone should fuse with your existing bone. Only once the fusion has finished will Dr. Spaniel begin the implant process. Bone grafting may also be necessary for patients who have gum disease, an injury, or a deformity.

Dental Implant FAQs

Are dental implants permanent?

dental implants permanent

Dental implants that are taken care of can last a couple of decades before replacement is warranted. By brushing and flossing, you may be able to keep your implant for the rest of your life (depending on your age). The prosthetic tooth is more likely to need replacement than the titanium post.

How many implants can I have in my mouth?

There is no limit — theoretically, you could replace every tooth with a dental implant as long as your jawbone is sturdy enough to hold the implants. However, many people who need to replace many teeth find the cost prohibitively expensive. If you want the benefits of implants at a lower cost, you may be a better candidate for implant-supported dentures or a dental bridge.

Will my friends be able to see that my tooth is fake?

Dr. Spaniel helps you to select a tooth that matches your other teeth in size, shape, and color. The point is for the implant to look like a natural tooth and blend in seamlessly with the rest of your smile. Once your implant has healed, your tooth should feel like such a normal part of your body that even you will forget that the tooth is a prosthetic.

Restore Your Smile with Dental Implants

To learn more about the placement and restoration of dental implants, please contact Summerwood Aesthetic Dentistry and request a consultation with Dr. Spaniel.