“Teeth In A Day” – The Real Truth About Dental Implants

General Dentists are often overlooked when it comes time for people to get costly dental implants. Largely to blame are the so-called Dental Implant Supercenters. Here we outline the major differences between Dental Implant Super Centers and Tradition Implant Treatments provided by General Dentists.

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Dental Implants, SacramentoFirst, dental implants are used as a substitution for tooth roots in areas of the mouth where teeth are missing. The implant is placed in the root to provide a stable foundation for a replacement crown to allow you to bite and chew comfortably and naturally. When teeth are missing, the bone that previously supported those teeth deteriorates. But, the bone can be preserved by replacing missing tooth roots with dental implants. The bone will form a strong bond to the artificial implant and will provide stimulation for the bone.

Implant Supercenters promise what is called “Teeth-in-a-day” or  “All-on-4” where the entire top arch of the mouth is supported by only four implants. An experienced clinician would normally recommend the traditional implant method versus doing an “All-on-4” at a Implant Supercenter because the amount of bone needed to support an entire arch of teeth is substantial if you are only using four implants. Because of the amount of bone needed for an “All-on-4” procedure, patients who have worn dentures for an extended period of time are rarely candidates for it. While traditional treatment for upper arches requires at least four implants, lower dentures can be replaced and supported by as little as two implants.

In addition to long-term denture wearers there are others who are not candidates for these “teeth-in-a-day” procedures. Typically those with significant bone loss will be recommended to go the traditional implant route. Bone grafting is often required for bone loss patients in order to achieve the best esthetic and functional results.

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If you haven’t been wearing dentures for years and do not have significant bone loss then supercenters may still be able to provide you with adequate treatment but the idea that you can receive your teeth in one day is quite a stretch. While the surgical procedures and temporary replacements of the teeth might be done in a single day, the diagnostics and treatment planning for those teeth can take several weeks. In addition, most supercenters do not provide the final replacement teeth for up to 8 months. Not to mention that the fitting for the final prosthesis might be an additional charge.

A common question is whether or not patients must live without teeth during this extended process. The answer is no. Never will you be without teeth. Today’s technologies provide natural-looking removable as well as fixed options during your treatment to ensure the best comfort and confidence for the patient.

“Teeth-in-a-day” are not provided exclusively by Implant supercenters. If you are interested your dentist can tell you if you are a candidate and could provide the same services at a much lower cost to you. And while there is documentation proving the success rates of teeth-in-a-day procedures for the last ten years they do not prove to be higher or more successful than the traditional implant treatments whose documentation proves successful treatments for more than 50 years.

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Q & A with the Dental Hygienist: Eight Ways to a Healthier Smile

Cosmetic Dentist Sacramento

1. What’s the biggest problem that you see with patients who come in terms of oral hygiene?

Most patients do not like to floss and think that it is no big deal.

2. How often should I brush and floss?

In an ideal world you should floss after every meal or snack. But, at least twice a day at morning and at night when that is not possible. The best time to loss is at night if morning is not possible because you do not want to leave remnants of food in between teeth to rot.

3. What are the benefits of flossing regularly?

Healthy gums, helps keep the teeth’s foundation of bone level, no bleeding, fresh breath, good check-ups, less cavities, less money to be spent on treatment because teeth are healthy, improves overall health of the body because the bacteria content that can cause heart problems is significantly decreased, decreased chance of bacteria between teeth being passed from mother to unborn child which leads to low-term newborns.

4. What are the dangers of not flossing on a regular basis?

I just mentioned that bacteria found in plaque can be passed from expectant mothers to their fetus. But there are studies that show a strong link between periodontal disease and heart disease. Not to mention that not flossing can lead to the loss of your teeth which could mean periodontal surgery and that costs money.

5. What is a deep cleaning and why would I have to get one?

A deep cleaning involves scraping the crown and root of the tooth to get rid of built up calculus and debris. Someone would need one if there are deep pockets between the gums and teeth and there is calculus present on the roots of the teeth.

6. What percentage of new patients that you see need a deep cleaning? Is it expensive?

Approximately 30-40% of the new patients that I see a month need a deep cleaning. It is expensive. But, have normal cleanings on a regular basis will eliminate the need for this type of invasive cleaning.

7. Why is flossing painful for patients? Will it always be painful?

Flossing is only painful for patients who have swollen gums, periodontal disease, or who only floss sometimes. Healthy gums do not hurt when flossed unless one is flossing incorrectly. Your hygienist can show you how to floss correctly.

8. Any other tips or products that you have for patients?

For patients who don’t like to floss with the string I highly recommend the Reach Flosser, it has a big handle so you don’t have to stick your hand in your mouth. At $3 a piece it is really affordable. The Air Flosser is a new device that can be used to floss. It costs about $70. Things like waters picks are good at removing plaque but does not replace flossing.

I Hate Flossing! Part II

A former flossing procrastinator turned flossing advocate; why to floss, how to floss, and the dangers of not flossing.

Sacramento DentistDid you know that if you lose five or more teeth to gum disease your odds at having a heart attack increase by 26%? If you are predetermined to have heart disease or diabetes you might want to think twice about flossing. Studies definitely show a strong link between poor oral health and heart disease.

Okay, well, I didn’t know this before. I was one of those “sometimes” flossers. You know what I’m talking about. When the dentist asked me how often I flossed my response was a sheepish “sometimes”. Then, I realized that my paternal grandmother died from heart disease. To add insult to injury, my father received a quadruple bypass at 46 and I lost an uncle to diabetes. Keep in mind that at that time it had been a few years since my last dentist appointment. Like many people it really hurt to floss my teeth and it was uncomfortable. I really didn’t want to do it. Really.

I guess you could say that skies parted one day when I stumbled upon some reading material reminding me that I was predisposed to horrible health issues (my grandmother’s heart disease, my dad’s clogged arteries, my uncle’s diabetes) and that not flossing could come back to haunt me with a vengeance. Now I’m a flossing advocator. And I put down the french fries. Win-win.

Now, working in a dental office provides me with more of an affinity towards taking care of my teeth. And all the compliments I get on my pretty teeth are just icing on the cake.  I promise that I am a modest person. I am! But I constantly receive compliments on my teeth. People comment on how straight they are to how white they are (thanks for braces mom and dad!). It’s those compliments that make me take pride in my teeth.

Think about it, when you work hard for your toned body and people take notice it only makes you work harder, right? My teeth are the same thing to me. That’s why I floss.

Everyone hates to floss. I hate to floss. But at the end of the day I’m healthier for it. You will be, too. Did you know that even the girls in the office hate to floss? That’s two Registered Dental Hygienists, four dental assistants!

Top 5 Reasons We Hate to Floss!

  1. It’s uncomfortable to stick whole hand in mouth
  2. “It’s gross!”
  3. Food flies around
  4. When floss gets stuck in the teeth
  5. Messes up lipstick

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