Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to get a Dental Implant?

Normally, the process for getting a Dental Implant can last anywhere between four to 12 months and requires surgical procedures.

In the initial surgical appointment, a tooth root implant made of titanium is gently placed into the bone socket of the missing tooth. The procedure can be done using either local anesthesia or general anesthesia for patients who are anxious. The recovery from the procedure is often associated with very little discomfort.

As the jawbone heals, it grows around the implant and secures it. Typically this healing process takes anywhere between three to six months, depending on the patient. Meanwhile, if desired, the patient is outfitted with a temporary crown or prosthesis.

Once the Root Implant is firmly bonded to the bone, the second phase begins. Dr Nguyen will uncover the implant and attach small post called an abutment, which will act as an anchor for your new artificial tooth.

The creation and placement of the artificial tooth or crown is performed by Dr. Nguyen; she will take a mold of your bite and send the model to a dental lab, which will fashion the replacement tooth to meet your specifications. The final placement of the new tooth requires only a 1 hour appointment.

In select cases, advances in Dental Implant Technology and procedures have made it possible to extract teeth and place implants with crowns at one visit, greatly simplifying the surgical process.

Here guidelines for 4 common Implant scenarios with timeline:

Scenario 1

Implant Appointments and Time for Extraction, Bone Graft before  Implant Placement

Appointment # 1: 30 minutes-1.0  hour.

Data Collection: Examination, take photos, models, x-rays, CBCT scan.

Appointment # 2: 30 minutes-1.0  hour.

Present Treatment plan, discuss risks, benefits, alternatives, costs, and review x-rays, photos, models, refer to specialists if  you like to have second opinion.

[Appointment #s 1, 2 can be combined with #3 if necessary.]

Appointment #3: 1.5  hour.

  1. Extraction & bone graft are done first, if  there is a lack of bone and primary stability  due to infection or fracture of cortical bone on either lip or tongue side of the socket.

  Wait 3 months, then place implant in appointment #4 of 1 hour.

      1. For the front teeth like canines and incisors, a bonded bridge or a clear template carrying temporary crown or a temporary denture can be placed at time of extraction. Then wait 8-12 months prior to permanent abutment and crown. This allows time for the gum to mature and mold into the right shape for permanent  crown.
      2. For the back teeth like bicuspids and molars, nothing or a temporary denture can be placed at time of extraction and bone graft.

Appointment # 4: 1hour

Place permanent custom abutment, take impression, send to lab

Appointment # 5: 1 hour

Deliver or cement permanent crown.

Scenario 2

Implant Appointments and Time for Implant Placement in Healed bone

Appointment # 1: 30 minutes-1.0  hour.

Data Collection: Examination, take photos,  x-rays, CBCT scan .

Appointment #=2: 30 minutes-1.0  hour.

Present Treatment plan, discuss risks, benefits, alternatives, costs, and review x-rays, photos,  refer to specialists if  you like to have second opinion.

[Appointment #s 1, 2 can be combined with #3 if necessary.]

Appointment #3: 1.5 hours

Place implant (if adequate bone and primary stability allowed) no bone graft needed.

For the back teeth like bicuspids and molars,  a permanent ZrO2 or Titanium abutment placed, take final impression, then a short temporary crown or veneer can be placed for cosmetic reason.

For the front teeth like canines and incisors, a permanent  ZrO2 or Titanium abutment, take final impression, then a short temporary crown or veneer can be placed for cosmetic reason.

Then wait 2-4 months prior to placing  permanent crown.

Appointment # 4: 1hour

Deliver or cement permanent crown.

Scenario 3

Implant Appointments and Time for Multiple Implants Placed in Extracted or Healed bone in Upper or Lower Jaw

Appointment # 1:  1.0 – 1.5 hours.

Data Collection: Examination, take photos,  x-rays, CBCT scan .

Appointment #=2: 30 minutes-1.0  hour.

Present Treatment plan, discuss risks, benefits, alternatives, costs, and review x-rays, photos, refer to specialists if  you like to have second opinion.

[Appointment #s 1, 2 can be combined with #3 if necessary.]

***Important notice – A well fitted, comfortable, and esthetic denture needs to be ready prior to any implant placement.

Appointment #3:   2-4 hours

Place implants (if adequate bone and primary stability allowed) no bone graft needed.

Option #1: Overdenture which is retained by implants (by ball attachment or bar) and removed by you at night to clean and have esthetic lip support.

Option #2: Fixed complete denture retained by 6 to 8 implants using your well fitted denture to attach to new implants and fixed in the mouth when you leave the office.

No one leaves the office without teeth after surgery.

Then wait 2 months prior to placing  permanent  fixed complete denture or overdenture.

Appointment # 4: 2-3 hours

Deliver or cement permanent  fixed complete denture or overdenture.

Scenario 4

Implant Appointments and Time for Extraction, Immediate Implant Placement with Strong Stability & Bone Graft

Appointment # 1: 30 minutes-1.0  hour.

Data Collection: Examination, take photos, models, x-rays, CBCT scan .

Appointment # 2: 30 minutes-1.0  hour.

Present Treatment plan, discuss risks, benefits, alternatives, costs, and review       x-rays, photos, models, refer to specialists if  you like to have second opinion.

[Appointment #s 1, 2 can be combined with #3 if necessary.]

Appointment #3:  1.5 – 2 hours.

Extraction, immediate placement of implant (if adequate bone and primary stability allowed) and bone graft   

    1. For the back teeth like bicuspids and molars, nothing or a temporary denture can be placed at time of extraction. Then wait 4 months prior to placing abutment and permanent crown.
    2. For the front teeth like canines and incisors, a  temporary veneer or crown on a temporary or permanent abutment or a temporary denture can be placed at time of extraction. Then wait 8-12 months prior to abutment and permanent crown. This allows time for the gum to mature and mold into the right shape for permanent crown.

Appointment # 4: 1hour

Place permanent custom abutment, take impression, send to lab

Appointment # 5: 1 hour

Deliver or cement permanent crown.

Is the surgery to place a dental implant painful?

No, it is usually done under local anesthesia in your dentist’s office, in just the same way as a filling. Once the anesthesia takes effect, you shouldn’t feel anything.

What can I expect after the anaesthesia wears off?

Generally there are no open wounds with implant surgery so healing is quite quick and un-eventful. You can expect some minor discomfort, but that can generally be managed with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication such as ibuprofen or similar medication in prescription strength.

What about eating after implant surgery?

It’s generally important to avoid exposing any recent surgical site in the mouth to food if possible. A good rule of thumb is to eat soft, nutritious foods and keep well hydrated. Your dentist will recommend a diet and instructions on how to care for your new implants during healing.

How long does healing and construction of the replacement teeth (implant crowns) take?

The entire process usually takes about two to nine months, depending on your treatment plan. There are two main phases: First the implants have to heal by fusing to the bone, and then the tooth replacement restorations have to be fabricated and attached.

How long do dental implants last?

Once a dental implant has fused to the bone successfully and it is functional, it should last many years if cared for properly. Many implants have now been in place for more than 40 years.

Can my body reject a dental implant, and if so what then?

Rejection of dental implants because of an allergy to titanium is extraordinarily rare, but it may happen. Occasionally an implant also doesn’t “take” or fuse to the bone the first time, either because it develops a capsule of fibrous tissue around it instead of fusing to the bone, or it gets infected. In either case it is simply removed and the site is allowed to heal. Then your surgeon can place another implant, which will integrate with the bone normally.

Are dental implants expensive?

Expense is always relative. For example, dental implants may be a little more expensive than fixed bridgework to place initially, but since they last so much longer, over time they are much more cost-effective.

Are dental implants covered by insurance?

Like most elective procedures, dental implants are not covered by most dental insurance plans if there is a cheaper alternative. As they become more commonplace, however, some plans are covering them. Your dentist may offer payment plan options to ensure you get the best treatment available to replace missing teeth, regardless of your insurance coverage.

How do you become a Dentist?

A dentist is a specialist who works to diagnose, treat, and prevent oral health problems. Your dentist has completed at least eight to ten years of schooling, and receives either a DDS (Doctor of Dental Surgery) degree, or a DMD (Doctor of Dental Medicine) degree. If your doctor is a pediatric dentist, this means that he or she specializes in caring for children from infancy through their teen years. A pediatric dentist has received the proper education and training needed to work with young kids. Other specialties include:

  • Endodontics (root canals)
  • Oral and maxillofacial surgery (including pathology, radiology, and surgery)
  • Orthodontics (braces)
  • Periodontics (gum disease)
  • Prosthodontics

Why is visiting the Dentist so important?

Your teeth may feel fine, but it’s still important to see the dentist regularly because problems can exist without you knowing. Visiting the dentist regularly will not only help keep your teeth and mouth healthy, but will also help keep the rest of your body healthy. Dental care is important because it:

  • Helps prevent tooth decay
  • Protects against periodontal (gum) disease, which can lead to tooth and bone loss
  • Prevents bad breath – brushing, flossing, and seeing the dentist regularly will help reduce the amount of bacteria in your mouth that causes bad breath
  • Gives you a more attractive smile and increases your self-confidence
  • Helps keep teeth looking bright by preventing them from becoming stained by food, drinks, and tobacco
  • Strengthens your teeth so that you can enjoy healthy, beautiful smiles for the rest of your life!

How often should I see the dentist?

Children, teens, and adults should all see the dentist for a regular checkup at least once every six months. Patients who are at a greater risk for oral cancer or gum disease may be required to see the dentist more than just twice a year. Your doctor will help determine how often you should visit the dentist for regular checkups.

What should I look for when choosing the right dentist for me?

Choosing a dentist who “clicks” with you and your family is important, and you may wish to consider several dentists before making your final decision. During your first visit, you should be able to determine whether the dentist is right for you. During your appointment, consider the following:

  • Is the appointment schedule convenient?
  • Is the office easy to get to and close by?
  • Does the office appear to be clean and orderly?
  • Does the sterilization area looks clean and organized?
  • Was your medical and dental history recorded and placed in a permanent file?
  • Does the dentist explain techniques for good oral health?
  • Is information about cost presented to you before treatment is scheduled?
  • Is your dentist a member of the respected organization such as AGD (Academy of General Dentistry), ADA (American Dental Association),  CDA (California Dental Association), AAID (American Academy of Implant Dentistry)?
  • How often do the dentist and his or her staff go on training to provide you with the most up-to-date knowledge and techniques and materials?
  • Does the dentist respond to patient’s concern in a timely manner?

How can I take care of my teeth between dental checkups?

  • ALWAYS remember to brush your teeth right after you eat or at least two times a day, and floss at least once at night or before going to bed!
  • Make sure to use toothpaste that is as fine and having a flour like consistency, without any grainy texture, that contains fluoride. This will help prevent cavities.
  • Avoid foods with a lot of sugar (sugar increases the amount of bacteria that grows in your mouth causing more plaque and possibly cavities) and avoid tobacco (this can stain your teeth, cause gum disease, and eventually lead to oral cancer).
  • Don’t be afraid to brush your tongue! By brushing your tongue, you will remove food particles and reduce the amount of plaque-causing bacteria. Tongue brushing also helps keep your breath fresh.
  • Be sure to schedule your routine checkup. It is recommended that you visit the dentist every six months.

At what age should I start taking my child to see the dentist?

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends that children first see a dentist as early as six months of age and no later than one year of age. During this time, your child’s baby teeth will be coming in and your dentist can examine the health of your child’s first few teeth. After the first visit, be sure to schedule regular checkups every six months.

How often should I brush my teeth?

According to your dentist and the American Dental Association, you should floss then brush your teeth at least two times a day, right after your meals is best. Flossing before going to bed is best. Brushing keeps your teeth, gums, and mouth clean and healthy by removing bacteria-causing plaque. It is also recommended that you use a soft-bristled toothbrush and toothpaste that contains fluoride when you brush your teeth. You should spend at least a minute on the top teeth and a minute on the bottom teeth, and remember to brush your tongue; it will help keep your breath smelling fresh!

When should I change my toothbrush?

Your toothbrush will eventually wear out, especially if you are brushing your teeth twice a day for two to three minutes each time. Your dentist recommends that adults and children change their toothbrush every three months. If you are using an electric toothbrush, be sure to read the directions because you may not need to change toothbrush heads as frequently. Patients with gum disease are encouraged to change their toothbrush every four to six weeks to keep any bacteria from spreading. After brushing, rinse your toothbrush with hot water to kill germs and keep the bristles clean. If you’ve been sick, be sure to change your toothbrush as soon as possible.

If I have braces, do I still need dental checkups every three to six months?

Yes! In fact, it’s even more important that patients receiving orthodontic treatment visit their dentist regularly. With braces, food may be caught in places that your toothbrush can’t reach. This causes bacteria to build up and can lead to cavities, gingivitis, and gum disease. Your dentist will work closely with your orthodontist to make sure that your teeth stay clean and healthy while wearing braces.

How do I schedule my next checkup?

Simply call our practice! Or fill this appointment form. Our front desk staff will be happy to help schedule your next dental checkup at your convenience. If you are a new patient, please let us know and we will provide you with all the information you need for your first dental visit.

FAQ didn’t solve your problem?

Contact Us at hello@implantforme.com or call us at (650) 838-0260.