Risky Business

Immediate Dental Implants

It's Not for Everyone

“Same Day Dental Implants”, “Teeth in an Hour”, “Teeth in a Moment”, “Teeth Yesterday”; people will tell you anything to get you in the door! Don’t be misled or confused by claims and advertisements suggesting dental implants only take one day or hour of your time, because they don’t.

Implant dentistry is one of the greatest dental advancements of our time. By surgically placing a titanium post (the implant) into the jaw, patients are able to replace missing teeth. The new titanium post mimics the root of a tooth and once stable, an abutment and crown is added for superior dental function. This eliminates the need for bridgework, partial and full dentures or living without missing teeth.

When doctors advertise their dental implant procedures as “Teeth in a Day™”, “One Hour Implants”, “Same Day Dental Implants”, they are eluding to the immediate or front load implant procedures. These advertisements are confusing because: 1) multiple appointments are always needed for any implant case: 2) they count on the fact that people are probably ignorant with dental terminology. The one day or one hour hook refers to the surgery only and may or may not include a permanent tooth.

With newer technology spearheaded by companies such as Noble Biocare®, patients can amazingly leave the implant surgery with a provisional (temporary) or permanent crown placed. This allows the patient to leave the surgery esthetically confident and comfortable. Unfortunately, to qualify for the immediate load implant procedure a patient must have good bone quality and no history of infection at the implant placement site among other qualifiers. This currently eliminates most candidates right off the bat.

Although traditional implant procedures can’t offer same day restorations or crowns, they do help a broader spectrum of people wanting a permanent, low-maintenance, esthetic, functional solution to missing teeth. Depending on the person and which arch of the jaw is being worked on, the process can take two to six months, multiple minor surgeries, and can involve some sort of temporary bridgework or removable appliance (flipper or stayplate). While a bit more inconvenient, totally worth it knowing eventually the smile will be superiorly restored.

It’s amazing how far dental technology has come and I’m proud to support this technology that will and is helping millions. I’m just concerned with claims that take semantic liberties to get people in their office. Once in the door and not a candidate for “Teeth Yesterday”, they can offer traditional implant treatment which you can get through a dentist or doctor you have already have a relationship with. Why not herald these procedures as “Implants in Less Time”; I guess it’s not as catchy.

Do-it-Yourself Dental Aligners

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I have many patients who are currently correcting their misaligned teeth or are interested in correcting their misaligned teeth. They want straighter teeth for aesthetics mostly, but when teeth are straight, they are easier to keep clean and help optimize facial structure and chewing habits. As a hygienist I completely support orthodontic work for all […]

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It’s not unusual for dental patients to need treatment beyond the scope of practice offered by a general dentist. A general dentist does many things but are not typically specialized in oral surgery, periodontics or endodontics (root canals). When a  patient needs specialized care, dental offices usually refer the patient to another office for their dental disease. Lately, […]

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