Dental Implants in Melbourne, FL

Based on recent data, Florida adults ages 60 and older had an average of 15 out of 32 natural teeth. If you have experienced tooth loss and are struggling with chewing or speaking, we can help. At Designing Smiles, we use dental implants to replace your missing teeth. With over three decades of experience, Victor Apel, DMD, is your trusted implant dentist in Melbourne, Florida.

What Are Dental Implants?

A dental implant is a metal device that is implanted into the jawbone. A crown or other prosthetic is placed atop the implant to fully replace the missing tooth from the crown to the root. As a result, dental implants restore your bite function and unify your smile.

We can use dental implants to:

  • Replace one tooth with a crown
  • Replace several teeth with a bridge
  • Replace all your teeth on the top arch, bottom arch, or both arches with semi-removable or non-removable dentures
  • Secure your existing dentures

Who Is a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?

Issues like decay, trauma or injury, bruxism (teeth grinding), or another condition like gum disease can lead to tooth loss. In fact, periodontal (gum) disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. Once the gum disease is treated and under control, we can use dental implants to replace the missing teeth.

Essentially, a good candidate for dental implants is anyone with a healthy jaw and gums who wants to restore their smile.

However, some factors may make you ineligible for dental implants. Implants are generally not used for children under 18 as their jawbones are still growing. Additional factors that may impact your eligibility for dental implants include:

  • Smoking
  • Radiation or chemotherapy
  • Substantial decay or poor oral hygiene
  • Bone disease
  • Vascular disease
  • Diabetes
  • Teeth grinding
  • Certain medications
  • Overall health

In some cases—like when an individual has gum disease or diabetes—once the condition is consistently under control, we can move forward with dental implants. At your free consultation, we will review your medical history to determine if dental implants are right for you, including whether any treatments are necessary before implants can be placed.

Traditional Implants

 in Melbourne, FL Designing Smiles Dr. Victor Apel

A traditional dental implant looks like a metal screw with a separate piece called an abutment that connects the prosthetic to the screw. The diameter of the implant is typically between 5 to 7 millimeters (about a quarter inch). Due to the large size, many people require a bone grafting procedure to build up the volume and density of the jawbone before the implant can be placed. If you have a weak or narrow jawbone, a bone graft will be necessary to accommodate a conventional implant. Bone grafting surgery involves transplanting tissue from elsewhere in the body or from a tissue bank. Sometimes, synthetic tissue can be used.

For individuals requiring a bone graft, a healing period of 6-8 months is required before the implant placement procedure. Once the jawbone has healed, a conventional implant can be inserted within the bone. Unfortunately, conventional implants must fully integrate with the jawbone over a period of at least 6 months. The implant is likely to fail if the prosthetic were mounted before this time.

For this reason and others, mini dental implants provide a more effective solution for many individuals.

Mini Implants

If you have lost teeth, you are likely looking for an efficient and reliable replacement option. Dr. Apel used traditional implants for over 20 years, but with advancements in implant dentistry, he now encourages patients to opt for mini dental implants due to their many benefits. As a Mini Dental Implant Centers of America member, Dr. Apel specializes in placing mini dental implants.

Mini implants are much smaller than their traditional counterparts, measuring less than 3 mm in diameter. As a result, mini dental implants are suitable for individuals with narrow jawbones. If the tooth is already missing, no bone grafting is typically needed. If you need a tooth extracted, we can often place a mini implant the same day—something that is difficult with conventional implants.

The structure of a mini implant is also more streamlined in its design. Rather than having multiple components like a conventional implant, a mini implant is a single piece. This and the implant’s size allow for a more straightforward, minimally invasive placement procedure. Compared to bulky conventional implants, patients experience greater comfort with mini implants both during and after their procedure.

Another benefit of mini implants is the reduced recovery time. You won’t need to take several days off of work as your implants heal. Patients can recover in as little as 24-48 hours on average.

Owing to the condensed treatment timeline, less invasive surgery, and shortened healing time required, mini dental implants are one-third to one-half the cost of traditional implants. This makes mini implants an affordable treatment option for replacing missing teeth.

Why Should You Replace Missing Teeth with Dental Implants?

Dental implants are a tried-and-true remedy for replacing missing teeth. The benefits extend beyond revamping your smile:

  • Greater self-confidence: Perceptions of our smile can impact your self-esteem, especially if you have encountered tooth loss. When this happens, you are more likely to refrain from laughing or smiling and even avoid social activities. Filling the gaps in your smile can restore your self-confidence, allowing you to feel more like you.
  • Improved chewing function: Whether you are missing one tooth or many, it can be challenging to chew. Dental implants improve your bite force by mimicking the strength of your natural teeth. You’ll be able to maintain a healthy diet and eat all your favorite foods with dental implants.
  • Fluent speech: Pronouncing words correctly requires your teeth, lips, and tongue to function together properly. Losing teeth—especially those in front—makes it harder to pronounce words that never used to give you difficulty. Dental implants help you articulate so you can speak confidently.
  • Better bone health: The roots of your teeth are essential for maintaining your jawbone’s health. Unfortunately, when you lose even one tooth, your bone begins to recede because it isn’t getting the needed stimulation. Acting as a prosthetic root, a dental implant prevents bone loss to preserve your jawbone.
  • Long-term results: The titanium used in a dental implant is very durable; with proper care, it won’t ever need to be replaced. Also, because dental implants fuse to the jawbone over time, they offer remarkable stability, ensuring a confident smile for years and years.

Financing for Dental Implants in Melbourne, FL Designing Smiles Dr. Victor Apel

While mini dental implants offer a more affordable solution than traditional implants, some patients still worry about the cost of their treatment. At Designing Smiles, our priority is providing affordable, reliable dental care.

For patients with dental insurance, we will help you get the most out of your benefits by coordinating with your insurance company to get you the maximum reimbursement possible. Your coverage depends on your unique plan, but we can file a predetermination estimate so you know the out-of-pocket costs before you receive your treatment.

We also offer financing for all credit types, including 0% interest payment options. By partnering with multiple third-party lending programs, we can leverage the best rates possible to make your monthly payment manageable.

Choose Dental Implants for a Lifetime of Confidence

Chewing your favorite foods, eating a healthy diet, and speaking with confidence are all possible with dental implants. These durable and long-lasting prosthetic tooth roots are a reliable solution for replacing missing teeth. Whether you have lost one tooth or many, we can help. With revolutionary mini dental implants, you can look forward to significant benefits without compromising quality.

Contact us today to schedule your free dental implant consultation. Let us help you feel like you again.