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DENTAL IMPLANTS AND BRIDGES

For patients with missing teeth, one of the best ways to replace it is by placing dental implants. The implant process can be broken down into two major steps. The first is the surgical placement of the implant into the bone. Once the implant fuses into the bone, we are ready to start the process of placing the implant crown. It takes about 4 months for the implant to fuse with the bone and for the dental implant to be ready to have the crown applied. 

If a patient is not a good candidate for implants, another option to replacing teeth are dental bridges.

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  1. Schedule a comprehensive examination by Dr. Moran and the oral surgeon Dr. Moran works closely with to ensure an implant can be placed in the extraction site. We need to see the bone level in that site, the health of your gums, and if there are any cavities present in other teeth. It is important to treat active decay before placing a dental implant.

  2. Once we determine an implant can be placed, we'll schedule you for the implant surgery. If there is not enough bone to place the implant, then you may be a better candidate for a dental bridge

  3. The surgeon will place the implant in the empty site. You won’t feel any pain during the process due to the local anesthesia. Post operative soreness can be present for a few days.

  4. It takes roughly four months for the implant to integrate and heal with the bone. 

  5. After four months, you will return to Dr. Moran to take an impression of the implant, gums and teeth around so we can fabricate the implant crown. This is an important step as we ensure that the implant crown made will look like your teeth, has a shape that allows for easy cleaning and care, and works functionally with your bite.

  6. After three weeks, the implant crown will come back from the lab and you'll come in for your final appointment. We first ensure that the crown fits well, has good contacts with the adjacent teeth, has a good bite, and has good esthetics. Once ensuring this, we are ready to permanently cement the implant crown. The implant crown can either be screwed into the implant or be cemented on to the implant abutment. 

The Step by Step of the  Implant Process

If a dental implant is placed properly and the crown is well made, care for your implant is fairly straightforward.

In order to care for your dental implants, we advise our San Francisco patients to brush and floss their teeth throughout the day like they normally would. Additionally, it is important to schedule regular dental exams and cleanings to ensure the implant is being cared for properly and the rest of your teeth are healthy. This step is important because while implants cannot become infected themselves, the teeth and gums around them can. The infection can spread and put your dental implant at risk. 

Care for Dental Implants

When you are missing a tooth, sometimes placing an implant is not an option for you. This could be due to lack of bone in the site to support an implant, systemic issues that may affect implant healing, or you may just not want an implant. Another option to replace a tooth is placing a dental bridge. A bridge uses the two adjacent teeth of the missing site as the support to hold the bridge. To ensure a long lasting bridge, you have to ensure that you clean the bridge well using a floss threader and water pik to prevent plaque build up.

Dental Bridges

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Here is a before and after photo of

replacing the patient's teeth with a longer dental bridge. The patient did not want implants due to surgery phobia and she also did not have enough bone to support any implants in the front.

Book your first appointment with Dr. Moran in San Francisco!

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Examples of some of Dr. Moran's Anterior Implant Cases

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