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Dental Implants

Say “Goodbye!” To Gaps Forever

husband and wife smiling in grey shirts

When you have teeth missing from your smile, it can be very difficult to be confident and secure in the way you look. Many people consider a smile a first impression, and when you are not secure in that, it can be difficult to live the happy, carefree life you want. Though dentures and partials are one way to tackle the issue of teeth missing, you may want to opt for a more permanent solution that does not require as much maintenance. Dental implants are an amazing way to have a full, beautiful smile while also being as enduring and natural-looking as possible.

Why Choose Dr. William Eick for Dental Implants?

  • Custom-made restorations for every patient
  • Able to reliably replace any number of missing teeth
  • 98% success rate—able to last for 30 years or more

What Are Dental Implants?

A dental implant is a small piece of biocompatible titanium that is placed directly into an empty tooth socket. The titanium post-like implant will act as a new tooth root and will prevent the rest of the teeth in your mouth from shifting to make up for the empty spaces due to the missing teeth. The bone in your jaw as well as your gum tissue will bond with the implant over time, creating a strong, permanent bond. After the right amount of healing time as passed, a crown is added on top of your implant- a crown that exactly resembles a natural tooth. At the end of the procedure, you are left with a beautiful, full smile you can be proud of.

The 4-Step Dental Implant Process

implant dentist in Rocky River holding a model of a dental implant

While the dental implant process takes more time than that of regular dentures or dental bridges, the longevity, reliability, and other benefits that implants provide make them worth waiting for! In total, getting dental implants can take several months to a year or longer, depending on the details of your treatment. Dr. Eick will be happy to walk you through how dental implants work in Rocky River during your consultation, but for now, here’s a simple outline of the four-step dental implant process.

woman at a dental implant consultation

Initial Dental Implant Consultation

To begin rebuilding your smile, you’ll first need to meet with Dr. Eick for a dental implant consultation. This appointment gives you a chance to talk about your smile goals and ask any questions you may have about the treatment. After addressing your concerns, Dr. Eick will review your medical history, conduct a thorough oral exam, and take X-rays to determine whether you’re eligible for dental implants right away. Some patients require certain treatments before their mouths are ready to receive implants, such as periodontal therapy or bone grafting. If that’s the case for you, Dr. Eick will work those procedures into your overall treatment plan.

dentist with a hologram of a dental implant in their hands

Dental Implant Surgery

Dr. Eick works with a network of local oral surgeons and periodontists to perform the surgical step of dental implant treatment. These specialists have literally placed thousands of implants over the course of their careers, so he completely trusts them to give his patients’ new teeth the strongest foundation possible.

When you visit one of these specialists for your surgery, rest assured that you’ll be completely comfortable. Your implant dentist in Rocky River will begin by numbing your mouth. Then, small incisions are made in your gums, allowing them to insert the posts at specific locations in your jawbone. After covering the implants with protective caps, the specialist stiches your gums closed and you can begin the healing process.

illustration of a dental implant in the jawbone

Dental Implant Osseointegration & Abutment

The high success rate of dental implants in Rocky River is due in large part to osseointegration – the process of the jawbone growing around the implant posts until they are essentially one and the same. Osseointegration usually takes somewhere between three and six months.

Once this process is complete, you’ll undergo another brief surgical procedure. The oral surgeon will make incisions in your gum tissue to access the tops of your implants and install abutments onto them. Abutments are the small connector pieces that let our team secure your custom restoration into place.

man admiring his smile in the mirror after getting dental implants

Delivery of Dental Implant Restoration(s)

You should heal from your abutment surgery in just a few short weeks. At that point, you’ll return to our office to have Dr. Eick place your personalized crown, bridge, or denture atop your abutments. After we’ve ensured that your bite feels comfortable, you’ll be free to enjoy your new smile!

Benefits of Dental Implants

Dental implants can be used to anchor a dental crown to completely recreate a tooth or to hold a fixed bridge permanently in place. Both solutions create a natural-looking row of teeth that you are ready and willing to show off at any given moment! Also, with dental implants, you will be able to laugh, eat, and speak normally, as well as with more confidence. One of the benefits of dental implants in Rocky River is the fact that you can regain your confidence that you may have lost. When you feel positive about the way you look, that positivity can spread into many areas of your life, and Dr. Eick wants to make that happen. He will take his time with you, discuss how you envision your new smile looking, and develop a plan around your wants and needs. Either way, you can be like the 3 million other individuals who are already living with and enjoying a healthier, more beautiful, and permanent smile.

A man with a beard smiles after receiving his dental implants

Lifestyle Benefits

  • If you want a smile that will inspire you to embrace a better quality of life, dental implants can make that happen. Unlike individuals with dentures or fixed bridges who admit to feeling self-conscious and embarrassed around others, your permanent prosthetics can give you the confidence you need to enjoy social gatherings again.
  • Dental implants in Rocky River will allow you to eat your favorite foods (even hard ones) and hot beverages. Dentures and fixed bridges can become damaged when eating certain items, and the acrylic used to create the base of a denture can become warped when exposed to hot temperatures. With dental implants, this is no longer a concern.
  • You will enjoy greater bite force and chewing power while eating, unlike denture wearers who must be mindful of how they chew to avoid instability or their prosthetic falling out.
  • By choosing a permanent tooth replacement, you can feel comfortable knowing that your implants are firmly in place because of their surgical placement. There is no need to rely on your natural suction (like with dentures).
An older couple shopping in a market to buy fresh fruits and vegetables

Health Benefits

  • Evidence shows that tooth loss and a person’s lifespan are connected. By choosing to replace your missing teeth, you are lowering your risk for serious health problems and helping to extend your life.
  • Unlike denture wearers and those with fixed bridges who will eventually experience changes to their facial shape, dental implants allow you to maintain a more youthful appearance because of the continuous stimulation to your jawbone. They help to keep it strong and stable, minimizing the chances for deterioration over time.
  • It will be easier to maintain your oral health because you will treat your dental implants just like your regular teeth. Brushing, flossing, and rinsing remain the same, making it an easier and less time-consuming process.
A middle-aged woman working outside in her garden

Long-Term Benefits

  • By choosing to have your dental implants surgically placed by a skilled implant dentist in Rocky River, you are increasing the success rate of your placement to 98%! After 10 years, with proper care and maintenance, the success rate remains 90-95%!
  • While it may seem impossible at first, you will actually save money by choosing dental implants. The reason is that you will not have to spend your hard-earned dollars on having your prosthetics relined or replaced, nor will you need to buy denture adhesives or special cleaning solutions to keep them clean.
  • Unlike dentures and fixed bridges that must be replaced every few years because of regular wear and tear, dental implants are designed to last 30 years or even a lifetime as long as you commit to taking care of them daily.

Indications for Dental Implants

As we touched on above, dental implants are a great option for patients with varying degrees of tooth loss, and Dr. Eick can help you choose from one of the following restorative options based on your needs:

Missing One Tooth

After an implant root has been placed into the jawbone, Dr. Eick can directly attach a dental crown to it using a small connector called an abutment. This tooth will be able to stay firmly in place on its own and won’t require the alteration of the surrounding teeth, helping a patient better preserve their natural smile.

multiple dental implant

Missing Multiple Teeth

If a patient is missing three or more teeth in a row, rather than replacing each one with individual implants, just two implants can be positioned on either side of the gap to hold a bridge in place. Compared to a regular bridge, implant bridges look more natural, have a better fit, and can be trusted to last longer as well.

bottom row implant

Missing All of Your Teeth

Even patients who are missing most of their teeth can benefit from dental implants. Using a few strategically placed posts, we can anchor a denture directly to the jawbone, providing a security and strength a typical removable prosthetic simply can’t match. And, implant-retained dentures have also been shown to restore much more of a patient’s bite force, enabling them to enjoy a wider variety of foods with ease.

Understanding the Cost of Dental Implants

three dental implants

As with any dental treatment, cost is always a factor that is on people’s minds. The price of a dental implant procedure can vary quite a bit from patient to patient based on their particular needs, such as how many teeth they want to be replaced, where they are located in the mouth, and what kind of restoration is going to be used.

While dental implants do tend to cost more than other tooth replacement options, they are actually the most wallet-friendly long-term. Traditional bridges and dentures may cost less, but they usually need to be completely replaced every 7-10 years, compounding their price. Dental implants, on the other hand, can easily last for 30 years or more, making them a onetime expense for most patients. Add this to the fact that dental implants provide superior aesthetics and function, and you can see why they are largely considered a wise investment.

dentists performing dental implant surgery

Preliminary Treatments & Dental Implant Surgery

Not everyone is a candidate for dental implants right away. Some patients may have to undergo certain procedures before their mouths are ready. If you have gum disease, for example, you’ll need periodontal therapy to ensure your gums are healthy enough to support dental implants. Similarly, if your jawbone has become weak after tooth loss, you might need bone grafting to strengthen it. While these treatments give your new teeth a healthy foundation, they do increase your overall costs.

It’s worth mentioning that the dental implant surgery will come with its own cost, as you’ll be visiting a separate specialist. The type of anesthesia or sedation you receive will also impact the price of your treatment.  

the three parts of a dental implant

The Parts of Your Dental Implant

The three parts of your dental implant – the implant post, the abutment, and the restoration – will all incur their own costs. Implant posts and abutments can be made from various materials, each of which comes with unique benefits. Your implant dentist in Rocky River will explain which type they choose for your treatment and its pricing information. 

dental bridge being placed onto two dental implants

Final Dental Implant Restoration

The restoration you receive will depend on how many teeth you’re replacing. It should go without saying that a full implant denture, held by four to six implants, will cost more than a dental bridge supported by two implants, and even less than a single implant with a crown.

dental insurance paperwork

Does My Dental Insurance Cover Dental Implants?

Most dental insurance policies do NOT cover implants themselves, but there may be some exceptions. Often, they will partially cover some other step in the process, such as your restoration. Our practice is happy to file your claims for you and help you achieve all of the benefits you qualify for.

dentist showing a patient information on a tablet

Making Dental Implants Affordable

To help you fit the cost of dental implants in Rocky River into your budget, our practice has partnered with CareCredit – a third-party financing company that offers multiple flexible plans to choose from, many of which have very low or even zero interest!

Dental Implant FAQs

Frequently asked questions about dental implants.

If you’re missing teeth, dental implants are an excellent solution to restore a complete smile. As the next best thing to your real teeth, they provide a variety of advantages over traditional prosthetics; however, it’s normal to have a few concerns before you’re ready to commit to the procedure. We’ll explain everything during your initial consultation to ease any apprehensions. While you wait for your appointment, here are the answers to a few of the most common questions patients ask us about dental implants to feel confident in the decision you’re making for your smile.

Am I too old for dental implants?

If you’ve finished growing, age isn’t considered when determining your candidacy for dental implants. Whether you’re over or under 50 years of age, they might be the solution for you if you have good oral and general health. We’ll perform a thorough consultation to ensure dental implants are the right option to treat your tooth loss.

Can I get dental implants if I have gum disease?

If you’ve lost teeth from gum disease, you won’t be able to rebuild your smile with dental implants until after the infection has been treated. Their long-term success relies on a healthy foundation. As a result, you’ll need to undergo periodontal therapy to rehabilitate your gum health before moving forward with your placement surgery. Although it adds another step to your treatment plan, it’s crucial to the success of your new smile.

Will I need bone grafting?

Many patients who are interested in dental implants will require bone grafting, but it isn’t always necessary. We’ll review a CT scan of your jaw to look for any weakened areas during your consultation. If you find your jaw’s density is compromised, we’ll recommend the additional procedure to thicken your bone. The grafting procedure will ensure your bone will properly fuse to the posts to support them for many years.

Can dental implants fail?

Dental implants offer the most reliable results when treating missing teeth; however, they can fail. Thankfully, the risk of complications is low. In fact, less than 5% of dental implants fail. You can significantly lower your risk by maintaining your oral hygiene at home and visiting your dentist at least twice a year for a cleaning and checkup. If you develop any concerning issues in between your routine visits, don’t hesitate to contact our office. Quick intervention is essential for preventing complete dental implant failure.

Are dental implants painful?

As with any oral surgery, it’s normal to have some discomfort while you heal, which you can manage using an over-the-counter pain reliever. Within a few days, your discomfort will improve as your body heals. You can minimize any pain by eating a soft diet for a few days after your placement surgery. If you experience any pain or tenderness after you’ve recovered, it might indicate an issue, like an infection. It’s best to contact our office right away, so we can pinpoint the cause of your pain to provide the right treatment.