Coral Gables Dental Implants
Dental implants offer a natural-looking and functional solution for missing teeth. Although these implants have been used for almost 50 years, the advancements achieved in the last decade have made dental implants preferable to their traditional counterparts (e.g., dentures, partials and flippers). Dr. William P. Lamas specializes in restoring missing teeth with implants.
What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants replace a missing tooth’s root. These implants are posts that consist of either Zirconium or titanium. Dr. Lamas surgically places this post into the jawbone at his office in Miami, near Coral Gables. When compared to other materials, Zirconium and titanium are unique because they have the ability to integrate with bone; thus, they fundamentally become part of the jawbone itself. This integration process is called osseointegration. Once osseointegration occurs, this implant replaces the missing root.
Once the ‘artificial root’ is in place, if a titanium implant is used an abutment will need to be secured to the top of it. This abutment may consist of Zirconium or titanium and is secured at the gumline. A new prosthetic tooth (e.g., crown) is attached to the abutment. The abutment and prosthetic tooth placement may occur at the time of the initial surgical procedure or several months later, after osseointegration takes place: Surgical plans are created based on each patient’s particular circumstances.
The Benefits of Dental Implants
There are numerous options available for replacing teeth; however, the only option that closely mimics the natural tooth is the implant. Besides allowing an individual to eat whatever foods he or she wants, implants keep the jawbone from deteriorating.
Other Options for Replacing Missing Teeth in Coral Gables
The other options available for replacing lost teeth include flippers, dentures, partials and bridges. These prostheses are made of acrylic and are designed to rest on the surface of the gum. Flippers, partials and dentures are removable, bridges are not.
While a bridge does rest on the gum, it is permanent because it is attached to the individual’s natural teeth. Since these prostheses only sit on the gum’s surface, they cannot stimulate the jawbone the way dental implants and natural teeth do; therefore, the jawbone starts to deteriorate.
The Downfalls of Jawbone Deterioration
Jawbone deterioration makes an individual’s cheeks appear as if they have sunk in, which is an unfortunate characteristic that is frequently seen in those who have missing teeth or who wear acrylic prostheses to replace their missing teeth.
Sadly, once the cheeks hollow, an individual can appear up to a decade older. Since dental implants stimulate the jawbone, deterioration is avoided; therefore, the cheeks do not hollow and the individual maintains his or her more youthful appearance.
Addressing Jawbone Deterioration for Dental Implant Surgery
When the bone in the jaw is not thick enough or it is too soft, bone grafting may be necessary before implant surgery can be performed. By transplanting a small portion of bone in these thin or softer areas, the dental implant will have a solid foundation. This is extremely important because the chewing action exerts enormous pressure on the jawbone; therefore, if this issue is not addressed, the dental implant is unstable and the surgery will most likely fail.
If only minor bone grafting is required, Dr. Lamas can usually perform this procedure at the same time he performs the dental implant surgery. It is the condition of the patient’s jawbone that determines how Dr. William P. Lamas proceeds.
What is a Bone Graft?
A bone graft involves transplanting a piece of the patient’s bone (or an artificial bone that is commercially available) from one part of the body to another. For example, a piece of bone from the hip may be transplanted into the jawbone. Once the transplanted bone is in place, it can take several months for enough new bone to grow to support a dental implant.
Is a Dental Implant Noticeable?
Once the crown is attached, the implant will look just like the rest of the teeth. This is accomplished by choosing a shade of tooth that closely matches the remaining natural teeth. If an individual is receiving a full-arch of dental implants on both the upper and lower arches, he or she may be able to choose the shade of tooth they prefer. Dr. William P. Lamas assists patients with choosing a tooth shade to ensure their implants appear completely natural.
Who is a Good Candidate for a Dental Implant?
While implants are not a feasible option for every patient, the adjustments being made to the procedure and the implants themselves are increasing the number of patients who will be able to benefit from this innovative solution for missing teeth.
At Lamas Dental Specialists in Miami, near Coral Gables, Dr. Lamas restores missing teeth using a variety of revolutionary dental implant procedures. These procedures include the Full-Arch, the TeethXPress®, the All-on-4® methods and the Mini-Dental Implant procedure.
A Complimentary Initial Consultation at Lamas Dental Specialists Near Coral Gables
To determine whether or not you are a good candidate for dental implants, schedule an initial consultation with Dr. William P. Lamas. Please be candid with Dr. Lamas about what you would like to accomplish with dental implant surgery. He will also ask about your medical history (e.g., previous surgeries, ongoing health conditions, medications etc.).
Certain heart conditions and orthopedic implants do require pre-treatment with antibiotics. This pre-treatment helps to prevent the onset of infection after surgery. Also, please tell Dr. Lamas about any allergies you have to drugs, and/or latex.
Please do not hesitate to ask about implants or any other dental procedures offered at Lamas Dental Specialists in Miami, near Coral Gables.
During your consultation, Dr. William P. Lamas will perform a comprehensive dental exam and take X-rays. Once he reviews your X-rays, Dr. Lamas will have a good idea as to which restoration options will provide you with the results you desire.
If you decide to move forward with replacing the teeth you have lost, Dr. Lamas will create you a customized treatment plan. While creating this plan, he considers a variety of factors, including the condition of your jawbone and how many teeth you need replaced.
A Dental Implant Procedure at Lamas Dental Specialists, Near Coral Gables
During your implant procedure with Dr. William Lamas at his office near Coral Gables, you will receive some form of anesthesia.
The anesthesia options available include:
- orally-administered anesthesia;
- twilight sedation;
- nitrous oxide (i.e., laughing gas); and
- general anesthesia.
Whether or not you can eat or drink prior to your dental implant surgery will depend on which anesthesia you are receiving.
Patients having general anesthesia or oral sedation, will need to bring a licensed driver with them to the office on the day of their surgeries. Furthermore, Dr. Lamas requests that patients have someone they trust remain with them until the day after their dental implant surgery.
For the safety of our patients, we do not permit the use of public transportation or ride-sharing services following dental procedures in which sedation is used.
A Traditional Dental Implant Procedure Requiring Bone Grafting is Performed in Stages
Dental implant surgery is typically an outpatient procedure performed in stages; however, advancements in the field of Periodontology have made Same-Day Dental Implant Procedures available to more and more patients. At Lamas Dental Specialists, we frequently perform Same-Day Dental Implant Procedures without the need for bone grafts, which eliminates the additional time necessary for healing between the bone graft placement procedure and insertion of implants.
If the tooth is still present, it is extracted.
Dr. Lamas prepares the jawbone. When necessary, a bone grafting procedure is performed.
If extensive bone grafting is necessary, once the jawbone heals, the patient returns for the second stage of treatment.
Now that the jawbone has healed, Dr. William P. Lamas can place the post. He carefully incises the gum to expose the bone and uses a specially-designed dental drill to create a hole where the post will be placed. The metal or Zirconium post is placed in the jawbone. For some patients, the titanium implant is stable enough to allow the abutment to be attached at this time. Zirconium posts are a single unit; therefore, an abutment is not necessary. A temporary crown is used as the prosthetic tooth until the permanent, custom crown is created.
Once a titanium post is placed, if the abutment was not attached, the healing process (osseointegration) must be completed: This process can take several months.
Now that the integration process between the jawbone and the titanium post is complete, an abutment and permanent crown can be attached.
Dental Implant Procedures Without the Need for Bone Grafting – A Fast Solution for Missing Teeth
At Lamas Dental Specialists, Dr. William P. Lamas performs a variety of dental implant procedures that can be completed in a much shorter time frame than those requiring bone grafting. In fact, some patients can walk in without any teeth and walk out with a new set several hours later. To find out whether or not you are a good candidate for a Same-Day procedure, schedule a consultation with Dr. Lamas at his Miami office, near Coral Gables, today.
Recovering from Dental Implant Surgery in Coral Gables
After implant surgery, you should expect to experience some inflammation, bruising and discomfort. Dr. William Lamas will recommend or prescribe medication for pain. Within 7 to 10 days you should be able to return to your normal diet.
You will care for your dental implants the same way that you do your natural teeth by brushing twice daily with a soft-bristled toothbrush, flossing and keeping up with your bi-annual check-ups, and cleanings. Neglecting to follow these recommendations could lead to infections, eventually resulting in implant failure.
Risks of Dental Implant Surgery
Just like all surgeries, there are risks associated with implant surgery. While problems are rare, when they occur, they are usually minor and can be addressed easily.
Potential risks include:
- implant site infection;
- sinus problems;
- damage to surrounding structures (i.e., blood vessels, teeth, etc.);
- nerve damage leading to numbness, pain and/or tingling in the lips, chin, gums and/or natural teeth.
Why People Choose Lamas Dental Specialists in Miami, Near Coral Gables
Dr. William P. Lamas and each of his staff members remain committed to providing each patient with the highest quality of care available, continually striving to exceed their expectations. Also, Dr. Lamas remains abreast of the most innovative procedures and technological advancements occurring within the field of Periodontology.
Dr. William Lamas is a caring, compassionate periodontist who has been helping individuals throughout South Florida attain the beautiful smiles they desire for more than 25 years. At Lamas Dental Specialists, you will find the dedicated professionals, innovative tools and revolutionary procedures necessary to help you replace your missing or failing teeth. Contact the office today to schedule a free consultation. Our phone number is 305.440.4114 and Lamas Dental Specialists is at 2645 SW 37th Ave, Ste 304, in Miami.