Dental Implants in Woodland Hills & Manhattan Beach
The compassionate teams in our Woodland Hills and Manhattan Beach, CA dental offices understand your frustration.
When you lose a tooth, we know how difficult it can make day-to-day life. Simple things we take for granted—eating, speaking, and smiling—suddenly become more challenging with missing teeth.
Dental implants can restore your smile, protect your oral health, and improve your quality of life.
At Modern American Dentistry, we believe in providing exceptional dentistry, and we take special care when placing and restoring dental implants for our patients. Correct placement and proper restoration can give you an implant that provides many years of reliable service.
We use the latest technology combined with the skills and expertise of Dr. Joel Gould and Dr. Gabe Adorjan to deliver outstanding results for our patients.
If you’re considering dental implants in Woodland Hills, CA or Manhattan Beach, CA, contact us at (818) 319-4046 or (310) 640-0967 respectively. A team member at either location will schedule your consultation with Dr. Joel Gould or Dr. Gabe Adorjan.
- What are dental implants?
- What are the oral health benefits of dental implants?
- Are dental implants the best option for everyone?
- I have lost several teeth. Are dental implants still for me?
- Do dental implants hurt?
- How long will my dental implant last?
What are dental implants?
Dental implants are titanium cylinders that support a dental crown or other restoration. They are designed to complete your smile and your chewing surface.
Because titanium is a biocompatible metal, it will integrate with your bone, creating a stable foundation for your single crown, and they can even support a fixed dental bridge or dentures.
The process begins with a comprehensive evaluation to make sure you’re a good candidate for dental implants. If you are, the next step is post placement followed by several months of healing. During this period the titanium bonds with your jawbone to create a solid root foundation for your natural looking tooth restoration.
Dental implants can replace one tooth or multiple missing teeth. Because they mimic your natural teeth, they offer stability and provide a number of oral health benefits.
What are the oral health benefits of dental implants?
When you lose a tooth, your supporting bone structure may begin to deteriorate through a process called resorption.
Teeth and bone have a dependent relationship—bone supports your tooth, and your tooth stimulates your bone. When that relationship is disrupted by tooth loss, your bone recedes because it is no longer needed. This can put your remaining teeth in jeopardy. They may tilt and shift as their foundation disappears.
Dental implants help to protect that relationship by preserving bone and preventing resorption. Since they fill the gap in your smile, dental implants keep your remaining teeth from shifting and preserve your bite.
Are dental implants the best option for everyone?
There are two main factors that come into play when our top Woodland Hills and Manhattan Beach dentists are determining whether you’re a good candidate for dental implants.
If you have an impaired immune system or impaired wound healing, this can lower our chances of a successful outcome. A successful outcome is an integrated implant with healed bone around it. Some systemic conditions such as diabetes can delay wound healing.
When placing a dental implant, we need to have enough bone volume for the implant to fit. We need to have enough height and enough width.
Implants come in various sizes and the larger the tooth the wider the implant needs to be. New research and evidence is showing that implant height is not as important as implant width so the use of shorter implants has allowed us to place more implants without the need for grafting.
When looking at bone height, there are different vital structures that we have to take into consideration depending on if we are working on the upper arch or the lower arch.
In the upper arch we have the maxillary sinus to deal with. This is a large air-filled space right behind your cheekbones.
After an upper tooth has been missing for a long time, the sinus tends to pneumatize (it gets larger). A simple analogy is to think of the sinus as a tent and the tooth as the tent pole. When you take out the tent pole the tent (sinus) falls.
If we don't have enough height on upper teeth to place an implant, a procedure called a sinus lift is necessary. This involves placing bone graft material below the sinus membrane.
In the lower arch, we have the inferior alveolar nerve to deal with. This is a large nerve that runs inside your jaw bone and provides innervation to all of your lower teeth and gums. The nerve cannot be moved, so if we do not have enough height to place an implant, bone grafting is needed to add height.
When looking at bone width, grafting is almost always needed if we have insufficient space. Bone grafting is used to bulk the area out and make it wider so that an implant of sufficient width can fit.
Grafting means promoting bone growth in your jaw by stimulating it with bone brought from another source.
Generally, the rule of thumb is that you want the implant to be at least half the width of the tooth. If you have a molar that is 10mm wide, we would like to place an implant that is at least 5mm in width.
I have lost several teeth. Are dental implants still for me?
If you have multiple missing teeth, dental implants can provide added stability to your dental bridge or denture. By using dental implants to support your dentistry, you can enjoy added confidence and the health benefits that they provide.
- Implant-supported bridges – We can combine dental implants with a dental bridge, allowing us to replace more teeth without the need for a partial denture.
- Implant-supported dentures – A few strategically placed dental implants can allow your dentures to lock into place, keeping your dentures from shifting when you speak or eat.
Do dental implants hurt?
When discussing dental implants with patients, one of the first questions that we are often asked is, “Will it hurt?”
Dental implant placement is usually a painless procedure. At the time of surgery, the surgical site is numbed thoroughly. There is never pain during the procedure since it is managed with proper anesthesia.
As far as post-operative pain, if there is any discomfort, it usually arises from the manipulation of soft tissue. Depending on the quality and quantity of bone present, we can sometimes place the implant in a flapless fashion.
That means that the hole for the implant is made directly through the gum without having to make a large incision. When an implant is placed flaplessly, most patients experience little discomfort or pain after the procedure
If we have to lay a flap to visualize the bone, there will be slightly more discomfort than during a flapless procedure, but all of our patients are able to manage the slight discomfort with over-the-counter pain medication.
There is rarely the need for prescription strength pain relief with dental implant placement in our Woodland Hills, CA or Manhattan Beach, CA dental office.
If you've been thinking about replacing missing teeth with implants don't let the fear of pain influence your decision.
We will work hard to make the procedure as minimally invasive as possible. The proper use of anesthetic before and pain medication after will ensure that your experience is painless.
How long will my dental implant last?
This is a question that commonly comes up when patients are trying to decide between a dental bridge or a dental implant. While a bridge will never last forever, dental implants can actually last a lifetime. There is one caveat though.
Since the dental implant and abutment are both made out of titanium, there is nothing that can decay or get a cavity. Implants are typically about 95-98 percent successful. However, there is one major difference between an implant and a natural tooth.
In a natural tooth, the gum is physically attached to the tooth with collagen fibers. This is very similar to how your nails are attached to your fingers. In the presence of health, these collagen fibers offer resistance to bugs and bacteria penetrating to deeper layers below. They help protect the tooth and bone from bugs. Regular brushing, flossing, and visits to the dentist for cleanings keep this area healthy.
In an implant, the collagen fibers in the gum cannot attach to the implant. The gums simply sit around the titanium abutment. This makes the implant and bone below more vulnerable to neglect than a natural tooth.
Typically, once a patient has an implant, we recommend cleanings every 3-4 months due to increased susceptibility of the implant to bacterial invasion.
While dental implants are very successful, it is critical to maintain good oral hygiene for implant survival.