Complete Your Smile with Dental Implants
Tooth loss can make life difficult, but you can restore your smile to full function and form with dental implants. Implant-supported dental restorations provided by OKC Dental Arts in Oklahoma City, OK, can let you enjoy your full quality of life without concern about gaps in your smile. With 34 years of experience, Dr. Michael Fling has established himself as a leading provider of high-quality dental implant restorations to residents of Oklahoma City and the surrounding communities. Dr. Fling uses continuing education to utilize the most cutting-edge techniques and ensure patients receive the highest quality of implant treatment. If you are struggling with loose or missing teeth or a failing dental appliance, we are here to help!
About Dental Implants
Dental implants are widely considered to be the best solution to replace missing teeth. Made of strong titanium, implants are surgically placed into the jaw during an out-patient procedure. The implants are strong and stable enough to replace lost tooth roots and create a foundation for artificial teeth. You can receive dental implants to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth, or an entire dental arch. A single implant is typically used to support a crown, two or more for a dental bridge, and four or more for an implant-supported denture, also known as a full-arch bridge. Implant-supported dentures can also be secured using the innovative All-on-4® technique.
Dr. Fling will meet with you to discuss your goals and the best treatment option for you. He does not place dental implants, but can manage your case from start to finish. Using advanced computerized technology, he can determine your candidacy for treatment, measuring bone density to ensure there is sufficient volume to support an implant. If you do not have enough bone tissue or room for implants, you may require a preparatory procedure such as a bone graft or sinus lift.
Dr. Fling specializes in creating top-quality restorations for dental implants. Working closely with a trusted oral surgeon, he can design and place custom implant-supported crowns, bridges, and full dentures.
Prior to the placement procedure, Dr. Fling creates wax models and precise surgical guides for your implant surgeon to follow. Once your treatment plan is complete, you will be referred to a trusted oral surgeon. After a minor surgery to place the posts, you will spend the next three to six months healing. Your jaw will fuse around the posts, creating a permanent foundation for your restorations. When you have fully healed, abutment pieces will be attached, which will secure your restoration in place. Dr. Fling can then attach your prosthesis, restoring your full oral form and function.
Benefits of Dental Implants
The implant posts you receive will be extremely strong and durable. With proper care, implants can last for decades, or even the rest of your lifetime. This lasting foundation will provide superior support for restorations, ensuring that they do not slip when speaking or shift when eating. Implants also improve oral health. The implant posts send regenerative signals to your jawbone and work to prevent bone resorption, which otherwise affects the jaw after tooth loss occurs. You can experience significant advantages in terms of your oral health and overall quality of life. Additional advantages of dental implants include:
- Restored ability to bite and chew any foods
- Prevention of adjacent teeth from shifting
- Improved confidence and self-esteem
Dr. Fling will conduct a careful analysis of your oral health and other factors to determine if dental implants are right for you.
Choosing Your Restorations
Today, the highest quality restorations are available to complete your smile. The newest materials, such as zirconia, are more durable than ever before, and provide an extremely lifelike appearance. You can also choose from other materials, including IPS EMax® and porcelain fused to metal. The color and translucence of your restoration can effectively resemble natural tooth enamel, while providing lasting strength.
Dr. Fling specializes in creating top-quality restorations for dental implants. Working closely with a trusted oral surgeon, he can design and place custom implant-supported crowns, bridges, and full dentures. Dr. Fling uses the finest quality materials to provide his patients with the best possible outcome. A former lab technician himself, he is very familiar with the fabrication process. With Dr. Fling's expert care, you can receive customized restorations that provide a flattering contour for your smile and jawline, which also function very similarly to natural teeth.
Candidacy for Dental Implants
While dental implants can be an outstanding way to replace missing teeth, candidates for the procedure must meet certain criteria. Some of the most important candidacy requirements include:
- Being willing to quit smoking: Smoking affects the ability of your body to heal, which is essential to the success of dental implants. If you are a smoker, you must quit several months before surgery. Ideally, you should take measures to cease the habit permanently.
- Having good oral and general health: Your smile must be otherwise healthy in order to receive dental implants. Any gum disease or tooth decay must be resolved before moving ahead with this procedure.
- Having strong and substantial bone tissue to support the dental implant: Your implants need a reliable foundation in order for you to experience maximum benefits. If you have waited to address missing teeth, you have likely experienced some bone atrophy. A bone graft or sinus lift can restore the jaws and create a proper foundation.
Dr. Fling will perform a comprehensive evaluation of your teeth, which will include an oral exam and digital imaging.
Treatment Timeline for Dental Implants
The process for receiving standard dental implants can take six months or longer. While many agree that the outcome is well worth it, it is important to understand that some patience is required. Additionally, it is essential to keep in mind that each procedure is customized, and every patient has a different capacity to heal. The standard treatment timeline for dental implants includes:
- The consultation: Since dental implants are an extensive treatment, a consultation about the process and the end results is essential. Dr. Fling will take the time to explain all aspects of your dental implant procedure and answer any questions you may have. During your consultation, he will also examine your teeth to determine the best course of action for you. Please disclose any medications you are taking, or any medical condition you have such as diabetes. This information is vital in determining if dental implants are right for you. Your consultation will take approximately one hour.
- Bone grafting procedure: Patients lacking jawbone density may require a bone grafting procedure prior to implant placement. This procedure adds tissue to the jaw and creates a strong foundation for the implant posts. Bone grafting typically adds at least three to six months of healing to the total treatment timeline.
- Implant procedure: When the jawbone is ready, the dental implants can be placed. This step is completed by a trusted periodontist or oral surgeon. During this procedure, a small incision is made in the gums, and a pilot hole is created in the jawbone. Next, the implant is carefully placed.
- Healing and recovery: After the placement of the dental implant, it may take up to six months to the device to fuse to the bone tissue. Dr. Fling will provide you with directives and a timeline for your healing. During periodic checkups, Dr. Fling will take x-rays to gauge your progress.
- Placing the restoration: Once the implant has fused to the jaw, Dr. Fling will begin the final stages of the dental implant process. He will attach a small abutment piece onto your dental implant. This device will connect your implant to your restoration. We will take impressions of the abutment and any surrounding teeth. The impressions will be used to create your permanent restoration.
We also coordinate the placement and restoration of All-on-4® implants, a solution that can support a full denture with just four implants. These implants can usually support a full temporary denture immediately after placement.
Restore Your Smile
For implant-supported restorations and complete dental care, Dr. Fling is an excellent choice. With over three decades of experience, he was named as one of the “Top 100 Clinicians in Dental Education” every year, since 2005. He and his compassionate staff continue to provide the experienced, effective treatment you need. Please contact our office today to schedule a consultation appointment. We can provide an in-depth consultation to create a custom treatment plan and provide your personalized cost estimate.
“We treat each patient with the highest level of dental care, skill, and judgment.” Dr. Michael C. Fling
At OKC Dental Arts, our Oklahoma City dentists practice a wide range of preventive, restorative, and cosmetic dental procedures to suit all of you and your family’s oral health care needs. To learn more about our dental treatments in Oklahoma City, call our office at (405) 848-6743. Our practice wants each patient to feel cared for as soon as they come in and our dentists, Dr. Michael C. Fling and Dr. Tracy Blessing, strive to provide each patient with personalized treatment and care. Get the dental results you want with OKC Dental Arts!