Dental implants are a state-of-the-art option that provides a permanent solution for missing teeth. Since 1989, Dr. Finlay has restored hundreds of smiles with dental implants at his Annapolis dental office.
The most important component of Dr. Finlay’s approach is treatment planning. Before any work is done, Dr. Finlay completes a comprehensive exam and uses 2-D and 3-D imaging to design the perfect set of restorations. Replacing teeth is a collaborative process. Dr. Finlay & Associates work closely with a select team of leading oral surgeons throughout Annapolis and Baltimore.
What is a Dental Implant?
A dental implant is a metal post that is used to secure a false tooth (or teeth) at the jawbone. An implant will also act as a missing tooth root. A surgeon will place it in the jaw bone making it very stable. This also reduces the risk of jawbone deterioration, which is a common concern for patients missing teeth. The dental implant system completely replaces an entire missing tooth or set of teeth. One implant will secure a dental crown, while multiple implants will secure a dental bridge or a set of dentures.
Implant vs. Bridge
A traditional dental bridge is not as predictable or long lasting as a dental implant. In some cases, a bridge is less expensive. However, it generally needs more maintenance than a dental implant over the same lifetime. To secure a bridge, your dentist will need to reduce the size of the adjacent teeth and attach the bridge to them. With a dental implant, no healthy remaining teeth are harmed.
The Dental Implant Procedure
Treatment planning is the key to the success of your dental implants. Your dentist will complete a exam to determine if you are a candidate for dental implants.
It is important to be good health and have enough bone structure, among other factors for implants to be successful. Once we determine that you have enough bone structure, we will design a detailed treatment plan that is customized to your needs. Dr. Finlay will coordinate several steps in the process with a trusted team of providers.
The next step is the surgical placement of your dental implants. A local oral surgeon will complete this phase of the process. The dental implants will be left to heal and fuse with your natural bone during a process called osseointegration. They will serve as the stable anchors for the new teeth.
The healing process for implants to fuse with the jaw can take up to 4 months. Once you have healed, you will come back to our office and we will attach an abutment to the implant. A temporary crown may be placed while we wait for your permanent restoration to be created.
A lab technician will make your dental restoration, either a dental crown, dental bridge, or denture. Dr. Finlay will coordinate the entire treatment and restore the dental implant with the final restoration. Patients leave our office with a new aesthetic and functional smile. To learn more about the dental implant procedure, see Dental Implant Process.
Dental Implants Before & After
Caring For Dental Implants
The restored dental implant is an incredibly durable part of your smile. Regular checkups are an important part of your ongoing dental care. At these visits, we will provide ongoing treatment including routine repairs and maintenance for dental implants. Additionally, a strict at home oral care routine is very important to the health of your restoration and implants.
Dental Implant Technology
Dr. Finlay also uses CAD/CAM for more precise treatment. This is a type of computer aided technology that dentists use. It allows him to create custom abutments, fixtures, and dental restorations. These dental materials will help create natural looking replacement teeth using strong, tooth colored materials.
Dental Implants FAQs
Do you have further questions about the dental implant process and how implants can be used to replace missing teeth in an aesthetic and function manner? Continue reading to find answers frequently asked questions in our office.
Are dental implants covered by insurance?
Some dental insurance plans do cover part of the dental implant process. Depending on your insurance plan, they may cover as much as 50 percent of the implant procedure. However, some do not cover anything. Contact your dental insurance provider for specific coverage options. You can also contact us for more information and financing options.
Do dental implants require special care?
No. Dental implants do not require extra maintenance on top of regular tooth brushing and flossing. Not only does a dental implant look and function like a natural tooth, but it also requires minimal adjustments to your existing oral care routine. They do not require dietary restrictions or special care. Care for your implants just as you would your natural teeth. It is important to brush and floss daily, as well as schedule regular visits to our office, however this important for everyone, not just those with implants.
How long does a dental implant last?
Your new dental implants may last a lifetime but should at least last well over 25 years. Dental implants are designed to be a permanent tooth replacement option, therefore, you will not need to replace in the future. With proper oral hygiene and care, dental implants should last a lifetime.
To learn more about our dental implant services, see:
- What is a Dental Implant?
- Dental Implant FAQ
- Benefits of Dental Implants
- Dental Implants vs Dentures
- Multiple Dental Implants