Since 2002, Dr. Chicvak has been a Fellow of the International Congress of Oral Implantology (FICOI) which means he has extensive training and knowledge of dental implants. He has performed over 500 of dental implant surgeries.
A dental implant is a titanium root placed in the bone. Implants can be done for a single tooth, multiple teeth or can be used to serve as strong anchors for dentures (aka - overdentures) and different types of dental bridges. Dental implants have been around for over 40 years with changes in technique and materials continuously improving.
How it works
The implant process is a multi-step course of treatment. Like building a house, the first step is designing it (treatment plan and planning for the final look of the smile). The second step is to lay a solid foundation (the implant). The final step includes the building of the house and adding all the finishes and design elements (the crown itself-shape, size and color). Of course, there are other small steps sprinkled in between.
The complete treatment can take approximately 4-12 months from start to finish depending on your situation. Variables include, the need for an extraction(s), bone graft, healing times and how extensive the final restoration is.
We strive to educate you completely about the process so we can manage your expectations. After a thorough evaluation and discussion with you, we will map out a treatment plan presentation that estimates the recommended treatment and procedures, estimated number of visits and a cost estimate.
|1||Once the area for the implant is clear and healthy, we start the implant process with a special xray called a cone beam scan, to evaluate the quality of your bone as well as the height, width and correct size of the dental implant. |
|2||Place the implant. You will be given comprehensive instructions on how to prepare for the implant placement including any prescriptions that may be necessary. The procedure for placing an implant takes about 1 hour and almost everyone is comfortable with over the counter medication for post-surgery pain management. |
|3||Three months later, we confirm the area has healed properly and ensure integration of the implant to your bone. If this is a success, we can begin to make the prosthesis.|
|4||Craft the custom prosthesis. Whether crown, bridge or denture, the final step is to finish off your smile.|
The benefit of Dr. Chicvak performing the entire procedure is he can treat you from start to finish. While another surgeon/specialist can perform the implant procedure itself, a general dentist is required to place the prosthesis on the implant. With the knowledge of the process from start to completion, Dr. Chicvak can better plan for the final restoration and the procedures throughout treatment. Like a house, he’s the architect, builder and the designer that puts on the finishing touches.
The result – a beautiful smile that feels and looks great!
The Good And The Potentially Not-So-Good Of Dental Implants
As with anything, there are risks and benefits. Benefits include:
- Natural look and feel: You treat a dental implant just like your natural teeth – brush and floss as usual. They also help you keep your natural face shape and smile and enable you to continue all your normal daily behaviors like eating, talking and laughing without worrying ‘teeth’ might slip.
- Durability: Properly cared for implants can last for decades.
- Protect bone and healthy teeth: With a dental implant, there is no need to grind down healthy teeth to support a prosthesis and they are the only tooth replacement option that helps stimulate bone growth and prevent bone loss.
Potential risks: Any surgery comes with potential risk - infection, swelling and other problems. With a dental implant, it can also fail. In short, it just may not work. The implant may not attach properly to the bone and/or can become loose over time. Research indicates this only happens about 2-3% of the time. We feel the benefits outweigh the risks and if you’re a candidate for an implant, we feel this is the gold standard of a tooth replacement options.
When a tooth is removed and the space is left empty, the bone will shrink and can lead to facial changes and premature aging. When the bone shrinks, it can make future dental work much more complicated and sometimes impossible. So, what we do is rebuild the bone at the time of extraction…bone grafting. This is a necessary step if you are planning for a dental implant and can also be required for bridges and dentures if the area is in the front of the mouth. Ultimately, as with anything we do, every patient’s situation is unique, and we will customize all our treatment to your individual need.
For more information, contact us or request an appointment today!