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Dental Implants

The process of getting dental implants shouldn’t feel overwhelming. If you live in the Knoxville area and are considering getting dental implants, Dr. Jim Kotsianas is the dentist that can help.

What are dental implants?

Dental implants support artificial teeth and are attached surgically to the jaw bone. Implants replace lost or missing teeth. They act as the root of the tooth to hold a new crown or bridge.

Whether you need a single tooth or multiple, dental implants can be a wonderful solution to restore or improve your smile.

 

The Dental Implant Process

1. Visit Your Dentist

To begin the process, visit your dentist and tell them you are interested in getting dental implants. After a short consultation, your dentist will refer you to an oral surgeon to place the implant.

At Dr. Kotsianas’ office, we go beyond a basic consultation. We start by explaining what it is like to get implants, how long the process will take, recovery time, and everything to expect along the way. We are happy to schedule the appointment with the oral surgeon for you, so it is one less thing on your plate.

If your dentist doesn’t give you all this information, get a second opinion from us.

2. Oral Surgeon First Visit

Your first visit to the oral surgeon will be a consultation. They will begin by performing a CT scan of your mouth and sinus area so they can determine the health of the jaw bone. This will confirm you are a good candidate to wear an implant. They will discuss the procedure, costs, recovery time, and schedule all appointments with you. That is it for your first visit.

With our own list of Knoxville’s preferred oral surgeons and appointments booked through us, you know you are in good hands.

3. The Surgery

Your next visit to the oral surgeon will be to place the dental implant. The implant is secured to the bone so it stays solidly in place. However, the surgery only takes about an hour and IV sedation is optional. Most people choose not to be sedated and have no issues.

If your implant is in a visible location, it is possible to have a temporary tooth placed over the implant. This way you can keep right on smiling.

One week after the implant is placed, you will go back to the oral surgeon for a post-op checkup. This way the surgeon can be sure it is healing well.

It normally takes 3-4 months for the implant to secure into bone.

4. Torque Test

It takes approximately 3-4 months for the implant to secure into the bone. After that time has passed you will make one more trip to the oral surgeon for a torque test.

This test is to check the integration of the implant with the bone. It needs to be tight for the crown to be attached.

If the surgeon is satisfied with the integration, you will head back to the dentist. If they aren’t satisfied, you will give it more time to set and come back for another torque test.

5. Back to the Dentist

Back in our office, you will find the same great people you started the journey with.

Your first appointment back will be to make an impression of your top and bottom teeth. This impression is used to create a crown to fit over the implant. No shots or drilling required.

After the impression, we work together to choose the right shape, size, and color to match the rest of your teeth.

With all this information together, we send the crown off to the lab to be made.

6. Attach Abutment

When your custom made crown returns, you come back into our office to have it attached to the abutment. The abutment is a small post that connects the implant to the crown. Crowns and or bridges are permanently cemented onto the abutments. The best part is you don’t need to be numbed or sedated, which means no downtime from work!

That’s it! Now you can show off your restored smile.

 

We have answers to some commonly asked questions below, but if you have any more, just request an appointment with us!

 

Will insurance cover dental implants?

Dental implants are covered by most insurance providers, but this is determined case by case.

 

Do implants work like normal teeth?

Yes! Dental implants function just like normal teeth after they are placed.

 

Does getting a dental implant hurt?

Every person is different, but generally no. You may experience some soreness after the initial surgery.

On the positive side, getting an implant causes no downtime from work!

 

How long does it take to get dental implants?

Depending on how quickly the implant integrates with the bone, the process normally takes 4-6 months from the first consultation to the final crown placement.

 

How long do implants last?

Long term studies have shown a 98.8% success rate. So dental implants really are an amazing way to restore broken, lost or missing teeth.

 

For more information or to start your process towards a renewed smile, request an appointment with us!

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