Dental implants are an excellent option for those seeking to replace one or more missing teeth. In the past, dentures have been the only available remedy for missing teeth, but implants provide permanent, comfortable, natural-looking dental prosthetics that are relatively easy to care for, and that contribute to the health of your jawbone. In the Columbus, Ohio area, family and cosmetic dentist Dr. Michael Firouzian can help you decide if dental implants are right for you. Please call (614) 848-5001 today to schedule an appointment at Firouzian Dentistry.

What are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are a durable and attractive option for replacing missing teeth. A dental implant consists of a titanium “root” that is implanted into your jaw bone and a dental crown that serves as a functional false tooth.

Why Implants Are Better Than Dentures

Dental implants are often the preferred option for replacing missing teeth because they offer a number of benefits over other alternative treatments. Dental implants:

  • Appear and function more like your natural teeth
  • Last longer than dentures or bridges
  • Allow you to eat and speak normally
  • Will not slip or make embarrassing clicking sounds like dentures
  • Require no modification to your adjacent teeth
  • Can be cleaned the same way as your normal teeth
  • Are more comfortable than dental bridges or dentures
  • Can help prevent adjacent teeth from shifting to fill empty space

Because dental implants are permanently attached to your jawbone, they function just like your natural teeth. You don’t have to worry about them slipping out of place when you’re eating, talking, or laughing.

And because they function just like natural teeth, you can keep eating all your favorite foods. You won’t have to give up foods like steak or corn on the cob. And you won’t have to learn a new way to eat: you can bite and chew normally with your dental implants.

With proper care, implants can last many years. They are often described as permanent because long-term studies show that most dental implants last longer than the studies, which are 10, 15, 20, even 30 years long! The first person to receive dental implants had them for over 40 years before he died. The second person to receive dental implants has had them for about 50 years, and they’re still functioning!

Caring for implants is relatively simple since implants require the same basic care as your natural teeth. Normal brushing, flossing, and regular visits to your dentist will ensure your implants remain attractive and natural-looking for years to come. Proper care will also ensure the health of your gums, which also contributes to the overall look, comfort, and well-being of your implants.

The Latest Developments in Dental Implants

There are many dentists in Columbus offering dental implants. It can be hard to choose the right one for you. We recommend looking at reviews and checking the results achieved for patients in the Smile Gallery. But you should also consider the education and training of the dentists. Dr. Firouzian has received focused training on dental implants, and he is a member of the American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID). This membership allows him access to some of the most recent and exciting discoveries in the field of implant dentistry.

How Dental Implants Work

A dental implant is a small titanium screw that simulates the root of a missing tooth. Topping the titanium root is a restoration such as a dental crown that has the appearance of a natural tooth and restores functionality to your bite.

Although dental implants are a durable and aesthetically-pleasing option for replacing missing teeth, they are not for everyone. A consultation with skilled dental implant dentist of Columbus, Ohio cosmetic dentist Dr. Michael Firouzian can determine if dental implants are the best solution for you. Dr. Firouzian may prescribe a specialized x-ray that will also confirm the health of your bone and determine treatment success.

Most adults who are in good general health and have sufficient jaw bone structure are viable candidates for dental implants.

Am I a Candidate for Dental Implants?

Most teenagers and adults are good candidates for dental implants. The main prerequisite is that you have sufficient jaw bone mass to properly fuse with the implant. If you do not, you can undergo a bone grafting procedure. Ideal dental implant candidates are missing one or more teeth, are in good overall health, and do not have any health conditions that may hinder bone healing.

Implant Surgery Pre-Op

There are several things that will need to be done in preparation for your dental implant surgery. Some of these things will be done during your initial visits to the Columbus, Ohio office of Dr. Michael Firouzian. These preparations include:

  • I-Cat or 3-dimensional imagery, X-rays, and hands-on evaluations of your jaw to ensure proper bone density
  • Bone grafting if your jawbone lacks sufficient density to support an implant
  • A thorough evaluation of your medical history
  • A thorough examination of your teeth and gums
  • A detailed explanation of what you can expect during and after your implant placement

These things will be handled by implant dentist Dr. Firouzian and the experienced staff at Firouzian Dentistry. During these initial appointments, we will also be happy to answer any questions about dental implants that you may have.

How You Can Prepare For Implant Surgery

In addition to the preparations made at our office, you will have certain responsibilities prior to dental implant placement. Taking time to carefully follow these instructions will help ensure a smooth procedure and comfortable recovery.

What you will need to do prior to implant surgery includes:

  • Quit smoking at least a month prior to surgery
  • Avoid alcohol consumption in the week prior to surgery
  • Do not eat or drink for at least six hours prior to surgery
  • Wear comfortable clothes to your procedure
  • Arrange a ride home, if the patient has been on sedation
  • Arrange for assistance from a responsible adult for the first few hours following your surgery

Taking these steps and following all of Dr. Firouzian’s post-surgical advice will help ensure your implant placement is successful and comfortable. Dr. Firouzian will discuss all of these preparations with you prior to your implant placement.

Dental Implant Procedure

The implant process typically involves two phases spread over roughly three to six months.

The first step is the placing of your titanium implant root. First, you will be adequately numbed. This may involve local anesthesia involving our new, more comfortable Anutra buffered anesthesia. Some people or procedures may require general anesthesia. The implant is then inserted into the jawbone. Once the implant is placed, it will be capped as your bone begins to fuse around the titanium root.

Osseointegration

Following placement, the implant will undergo a process known as osseointegration. This is the process in which your jawbone accepts your dental implant as a natural tooth root. While this part of the process can take up to six months, it is vital to ensure your implant provides a permanent solution. During this healing time, a temporary crown will be placed atop the implant.

Dental Crown Placement

Once your jawbone has accepted your implant, you will return to our office for the restorative procedure. This will include the placement of a dental crown that has been shaped, colored, and sized to precisely match your adjacent teeth. After it has been placed, your dental crown will act in the same manner as your natural teeth, providing you with renewed strength, and increased aesthetic appeal. The crown will not only match your existing natural teeth, but it will restore strength and function to your bite.

Variations on the Dental Implant Procedure

Every patient is different, so although the procedure described above is accurate for most patients, some may require a different procedure. If you’re replacing more than one lost tooth, we will likely place multiple dental implants in the same procedure. Instead of an individual crown, you will receive a dental bridge that replaces all the lost teeth and is secured by two or more implants.

If you’ve suffered significant jawbone loss as a result of gum disease or atrophy, a bone graft may be necessary before your dental implant can be placed.

In other cases, your dental implant may be secure enough when it is first placed that you can get a temporary dental crown placed the same day. It all depends on your individual situation.

Dental Implant Cost

We understand that many people are concerned about the cost of dental implants and want to get an estimate for dental implants online. However, we cannot offer online estimates for dental implants because the procedure is highly customized.

We design each dental implant procedure to precisely fit a patient’s anatomy for the best:

  • Function
  • Durability
  • Appearance

Every aspect of the procedure–including the selection of the implant or implants, the number of implants, the timing of implantation, the type of restorations, and more–is individual.

Any estimate we gave without performing an exam would be inaccurate to the point that it might be considered deceptive. We would never want to deceive an actual or potential patient so we only give estimates for dental implant cost after performing a comprehensive exam.

When considering dental implants, it’s important to consider not just cost, but also value. Dental implants may be more expensive than dentures, but they provide a much higher quality of life. And implants have the potential to last for much longer than dentures. This makes dental implants a good value for the money. It also means that investing in quality dental implants is usually a better value than trying to buy low-cost dental implants today. The investment usually pays off in terms of better appearance and function, as well as improved durability for all parts of the implant.

What is the Standard Recovery Time for One Implant?

The protocols and regimen Dr. Firouzian employs offer the fastest recovery time for patients following anything from single implant restorations to a full arch. Much of recovery has to do with the stress of the actual surgery and the health of the patient.  We take every consideration into account from the beginning to the end and this absolutely helps patients lessen the recovery time needed to go through these procedures. 

Many patients experience only minor discomfort after the implant root is placed and are able to return to work within a day or two. The process for osseointegration itself may take up to six months. Discomfort during the recovery period can typically be controlled with over-the-counter painkillers.

What is the Standard Recovery Time For a Full Arch?

Full arch surgery sometimes requires more recovery time than single implants. Especially if it’s on the upper arch where it’s difficult to apply a direct cold compress. However, again, the holistic approaches Dr. Mike utilizes and the recovery regimen he implements for the patient makes the best impact for recovery possibilities for all patients who need this important surgery. Ultimately, even if it takes a week to two weeks to have tissue inflammation calm down after a very serious full arch extraction and implant placement surgery, the benefit of reliably chewing into your tough steak and raw vegetables makes the process completely worth it for long term health.

What Do Patients Say Their Pain Levels After Surgery Are?

In every implant placement procedure, much of our efforts on behalf of the patient is in the planning of their case so there are no surprises. Patients may be more concerned with the cost because that is what they have worked to plan for.  However, when you visit Dr. Firouzian for your implant surgery, after signing the medical release, he outlines your treatment from start to finish to plan for the most painless procedure possible. Most patients leave pleasantly surprised with the ease of the procedure. Oftentimes when Dr. Mike calls patients that night to see how their recovery is going they remark that they have had zero pain whatsoever and all is well.  

What Post-Treatment Care Do You Recommend?

We implement the same routines for patients in recovery including antibiotics and pain medication. In addition, we implement holistic oral rinses that help reduce dependency on pain medication due to their anti-inflammatory quality. Patients can also apply cold compresses.

Learn More About Dental Implants in Columbus

If you would like more information about dental implants in Columbus, OH such as how they can restore your natural smile, please call (614) 848-5001 or contact Dr. Michael Firouzian at Firouzian Dentistry. We would be happy to schedule an appointment or a consultation to discuss your options to replace missing teeth.