Tag Archives: Dental Implants

What Are Affordable Options When Teeth Just Start Falling Out?

I don’t know what to do for my Great Aunt. She’s almost 90 years old and the last time we visited her two of her teeth just fell out. I feel like her dental care is being overlooked. I’m willing to help her with it but I don’t know what to do. Are there any affordable options for her?

Benson L. – Colorado

Benson,

It sounds like your aunt has very advanced gum disease. This is going to impact what type of treatments you can do. Normally, a dental bridge would be fine for a couple of missing teeth but with such advanced gum issues it will spell the imminent demise of the teeth the bridge is anchored to.

The top of the line tooth replacement is dental implants, but you asked for something affordable. There are some affordable dental implants, but they work more with things like snap-on dentures. Either way, her gums would need to be healthy.

Your best option in this situation is to get her dentures. Usually they have a huge drawback of losing jawbone, but at your Great Aunt’s age, that will not be a serious issue.

It’s a great thing she has you looking out for her because it doesn’t sound like many people have been. If she’s a candidate for sedation dentistry, this might be a good idea. If she hasn’t been to the dentist in a while, it could be scary for her. Plus, she likely needs a lot of work and this will make it easier for her.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Brad Hylan.

Dentist Insists I Get Dentures. There Must Be Other Options.

I’m barely 30 years old and a dentist is practically insisting I remove all my teeth and get dentures. I went in for a single toothache. I was expecting to have a cavity or something; instead, he told me all my teeth were horrible and I needed to remove them all and get dentures. He pressured me to do it right then and there, but I couldn’t face dentures at my age. I don’t want to look like my grandmother. I only let him remove the one tooth, but I’m supposed to go back next week for the rest of them. I’ve been crying since I got home. There has to be another option.

Amelia – Georgia

Amelia,

This definitely warrants a second opinion. I don’t like the pressure tactics this dentist is using. Sometimes dentures are the only option. But at such a young age as yours, it would be an absolute last resort. The first thing I would do is go to a different dentist to see which teeth can be saved and which can’t. I doubt it’s as bad as your dentist said or you’d have felt more pain than just on one tooth.

Many times a root canal treatment or a dental crown will take care of extensive decay or a tooth infection while helping you retain as much healthy tooth structure as possible. You really only want to remove teeth that can’t be saved.

Your best option for replacing those teeth is to get dental implants. These have the advantage of being anchored to your jawbone. Not only does that give you a stable prosthetic tooth, but it protects you from losing the minerals in your jawbone, which gives the “grandma” look you were worried about.

Find a dentist who is willing to work to save your teeth as his or her top priority. They’re also under an ethical obligation to discuss all your treatment options.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Brad Hylan.

Dentist Refused to Give My Downs Syndrome Daughter Dental Implants

I’m so frustrated right now. My daughter lost a couple of teeth due to decay. I did research to find the best implant dentist in our area. But, when we went to see him, he flat out refused to treat her, due to her “inability to care for her teeth”. She’s 23 years old and, yes, she has Down Syndrome. That doesn’t mean she doesn’t care for her teeth. She’s largely independent and even holds down a job. She still lives with us and I manage her medical needs to make sure she is seen to. I remind her to clean her teeth, and yes, she’s lost a couple, but doesn’t everyone who gets dental implants? I don’t understand how he can be so heartless. I don’t know if I should try to make an appeal to his softer side or if we should just keep searching until we find someone who can do it. Any suggestions on how to proceed are welcomed.

Thank you,

Sheila M. – Mississippi

Dear Sheila,

I’m sorry for the experience you’ve had. Even the “best implant dentists” likely have days where they’re insensitive in how they deal with patients. There are two possibilities here as to why he’s refusing to treat your daughter.

The first is likely the one you are offended by. He may be uncomfortable with your daughter’s Downs Syndrome. It may be he hasn’t had any patients in your daughter’s situation and isn’t familiar with whether or not care for her differs from his other patients.

The second is it has nothing to do with her Downs Syndrome and more to do with her oral health care. If he’s concerned that she doesn’t clean her teeth well enough it would explain his refusal to treat her. This means that if a dental implant is placed, it will quite likely fail, and that’s no small thing. When you consider all that’s involved; the surgeries, the waiting for it to heal, treatment costs, etc., it’s really unwise to perform treatment that’s almost guaranteed to fail.

Here are some options for you. You’re right that other people lose teeth and get dental implants. You mentioned your daughter lost her teeth to decay. It takes a long time to get from decay to the need for an extraction. This makes me wonder if your daughter is getting to the dentist enough. Especially if she’s predisposed to problems with her teeth. Some people are. It’s not a matter of not caring. It’s more the dental genes they were dealt. If you can get her to the dentist more often and show the dentist her hygiene won’t be a problem, he may change his mind.

Another option is to try for a different dentist who is equally skilled at placing dental implants. Call some of the dental implant organizations such as the International Congress of Oral Implantologists or the American Board of Oral Implantology to find out who are the most qualified implant dentists in your area.

If she’s truly not a good candidate for implants, you have other options. You could look into a removable partial denture or a dental bridge. These are very viable solutions for missing teeth.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Brad Hylan.

Where Should I Get All My Teeth Removed?

I’m so tired of dealing with teeth that constantly humiliate me. I’m avoiding social situations. I don’t relish going to the dentists. In fact, my fear has kept me away for years. What I need to do is remove my teeth and just get dentures, so I won’t be embarrassed to smile. I just don’t know whether that’s a dentist or surgeon thing.

Blake F. – Texas

Blake,

Don’t feel too bad about your dental fear. A lot of people share the same fear. Before you jump right to dentures, I’d love to see if your natural teeth can be saved. They’re so much better for you than dentures, which can be a huge hassle in themselves. I realize your dental fear is an issue and I promise I’m not ignoring that. In fact, I’m going to suggest you go to a dentist who does sedation dentistry. This will enable you to have completely pain-free dentistry, even with the current poor state of your teeth.

If your teeth can be saved, fantastic. In case they can’t, I’ll answer your question. A dentist is perfectly able to do your tooth extractions as well as create your dentures. Make sure the dentist you go to is able to do the pre-denture surgery. It’s not complicated. If they do, they’ll be well qualified to do your dentures.

Before you make a final decision, though, I’d like you to look into dental implants as well. Dentures do not replace the roots of your teeth, which means you’ll start losing your jawbone. Eventually, your dentures won’t have any means to stay in your mouth. Implants, on the other hand, place prosthetic roots in your jawbone. That means you’ll have a more stable tooth replacement. In fact, it’s like having natural, healthy teeth in your mouth.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Brad Hylan.

Clear Choice Never Told Me They Could Fail

Clear Choice cost me about $63,000. They spent a lot of time telling me how they’re saving me money because I won’t need bone grafting. I’d only had my teeth out for a few months when I went to see them and I knew I was tired of the dentures. I didn’t want to wait on bone grafting too before I received teeth again. Now, I”m just a year into the procedure and one of the implants had a problem. Instead of fixing that one, they’re telling me the entire unit has to be replaced. They never told me that was even a possibility.

Because I had to start over I decided to see about other dental implant options. I will also admit I was feeling a little salty about them not warning me that losing one implant meant losing all. I didn’t want to give them more money. I’m so glad I did.

Clear Choice originally convinced me I was saving a ton of money by not needing bone grafting. It turns out I didn’t need any bone grafting to begin with. But, now that I’ve done the all-on-4 procedure, I will. I’ve been shafted…twice.

My advice—always check out all your options before making a decision.

Georgia P. – South Carolina

Will Medical Insurance Cover Dental Implants?

I’ve been struggling with periodontal disease and some other issues. I got dentures, but they make me gag. Dental implants are out of my budget. Is there a chance my medical insurance would pay for it because not having teeth is bad for my health?

Tilley L. – Montana

Tilley,

Dental Implants are an excellent procedure for replacing your teeth. But, as you’ve discovered, they are expensive. Unfortunately, medical insurance always has a clause in it that they won’t cover any dental procedures.

There are so many benefits to dental implants, but one I seem to forget to mention you brought up. Gagging. Those with a strong gag reflex find it quite helpful to not have all the additional implements in their mouth that come with dentures. Implants are like having your natural teeth, so there’s nothing to gag on.

However, even with all their benefits, you won’t be a good candidate for implants until you have your gum disease under control. You’ll lose the implants just like you’re losing your teeth. Your best bet is to save up for dental implants while you get your gums healthy. In the meantime, you’ll need to continue with the dentures.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Brad Hylan.

Why I Backed Out of Clear Choice?

One woman’s experience with Clear Choice:

I was considering doing a dental implant procedure. I really wanted the best tooth replacement. However, my dentist indicated this procedure could take months. I saw an advertisement for Clear Choice. It talked about how much faster their procedure was. In fact, they said I could get it all over with in one day. That sounded appealing.

When I called, however, the sales tactic was pretty hard. While they gave me a price compatible with my dentists, they insisted I place a $1000 deposit down to hold that guaranteed price. Then I find out they expect me to remove healthy teeth in order to do their procedure. That worried me. I did some more research and discovered their procedure isn’t the “normal” dental implant procedure. Instead, Clear Choice does some kind of short-cut, which does save time, but will likely cost me in the long run–including some healthy teeth. No thanks.

Glad I did some more research.

Helen – Virginia

I Want to Extract My Tooth. My Dentist Wants to “Save” It

I’m so tired of messing with one of my stupid teeth. First, I was a toothache. My dentist thought it was fine. Then, a few months later, I developed a cavity. We filled the cavity. A few months later, it got a completely different cavity. My dentist wants to do a crown. I’m so tired of this tooth. I want to just take it out, but my dentist thinks it’s better to “save” it. Why is that so important? It’s not like the tooth people see is going to be real anymore.

Phil – Washington

Phil,

I’m going to side with your dentist. Let’s say you extract the tooth. Then what? Are you just going to leave a gap there? Even if the tooth isn’t a front tooth, which would affect your appearance, that gap will cause your other teeth to shift. This will cause bite problems and may even lead to TMJ.

But what if you replace it instead of leaving a gap? Okay, the best replacement is a dental implant. It will require surgery and months of healing. Then a crown. Not to mention the thousands of dollars it costs. If you decide to get a removable partial denture instead, that’s easier–initially. But, it’s removable. You have a tooth that moves, comes out, gets food under it, and is uncomfortable. Fun, huh?

Neither of those options sound better than getting one crown. If you talk to patients who’ve had their teeth extracted, they’d tell you they wish they could have saved the tooth.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Brad Hylan.

Is It Possible to Save a Permanent Tooth that was Knocked Out?

We were at my son’s football game. His best friend lost a tooth during the game. His mother was panicked and not sure what to do. I started thinking I didn’t either. What would you do in that situation? Can a permanent tooth even be saved?

Cary A. – Minnesota

Cary,

Yes, they can be saved in some cases, but the success rate can often depend on how quickly you get to the dentist and how damaged it is. You really want to get to the dentist within thirty minutes. It’s best if you call your dentist ahead of time and let them know the situation, so they can be ready for you when you get there.

If you can’t reach your dentist, there are emergency dentists you can call who’ll get you in right away. It’s important you keep the tooth moist. You can put it in a glass of milk. Make sure you only handle it by the crown of the tooth (the visible part above your gums). Leave the root alone or you could damage the chances of saving the tooth.

If for some reason the tooth can’t be saved, don’t panic. Today we’ve made real advancements in tooth replacements. Dental Implants are like having your own teeth back.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Brad Hylan.

Clear Choice was Pushy and Immovable

I went for a consultation to Clear Choice after several months of trying to get my dentures tolerable. They quoted me $59,000. That’s a lot of money and I could get traditional dental implants for less than that. When I told them that they insisted I wasn’t factoring in bone grafting. That’s true, but only because I don’t need bone grafting. My existing bone structure is fine.

During their sales pitch, it became increasingly clear that dental implants were a better option for me than Clear Choice’s all-on-four procedure. I mentioned that but they weren’t willing to let me off the hook. They kept hammering away at me. I said if they’d consider coming down on the price, we might talk, but they were steadfast about that huge priced tag.

At one point, I just said I needed to go. As I stood up, they implied I was intentionally not caring about my teeth and tried to waste their time. That was it. I’ll never go back.