dental-implant What is the cost of a dental implant? Why is there such a variation in fees for dental implants? Are the advertisements I see for $499 dental implants too good to be true? When trying to figure out what the appropriate fee for a dental implant should be one should know exactly what the procedure entails. Here are the dental implant facts:

  • There are about three parts that make up an implant restored tooth. The implant, which is surgically placed into the jaw and acts as the root. The post, which screws into the implant to connect the implant to the crown. Then finally the crown, which is cemented or screwed onto the post.
  • To have an implant placed and completed start to finish can take between 3-6 months. However with each person the timeline may vary. Time can be added to this treatment if the area needs to have bone grafting. Bone grafting helps regenerate missing bone in areas where there is not enough space for an implant. This can add about 3-6 months to your overall procedure timeline as the grafting is normally done before the implant surgery.
Knowing the parts necessary in placing and restoring a dental implant can give us an idea as to why there is such a difference in price.  At Frangella Dental the fee for surgical placement and restoration of a dental implant is priced as a service and NOT as a commodity. The parts that make up the implant are generally a universal cost to the practitioner with the exception of the type of crown used and if you need a custom post rather than a stock post. These fees can be dependent upon which dental lab is used as well. That being said, a dental implant is just a tool or material that a practitioner uses for this type of procedure.  And, all practitioners are not created equal. So when asking yourself is this deal too good to be true, ask your practitioner these  questions and you’ll know. 1. Have you had any training in implantology? And if so how long was your program? 2. What is your success rate? is it above 90% 3. How long have you been placing implants? 4. And lastly, Does this fee include treatment planning, possible bone grafting as well as the restoration of the implant? These few questions should help you make an educated decision about your treatment and most likely allow you to feel more confident with your practitioner. It never hurts to be an educated consumer and remember,  you should always feel comfortable discussing your treatment with your dentist.  ]]>

If you’ve been following the news recently you may have seen articles about legislation trying to pass laws allowing increased use of Dental PhysicianTherapists in under-served populations. There has been a lot of controversy about this subject because of exactly what a dental therapist is and their role in dental care in the United States. Currently dental therapists are allowed to practice in Alaska and Minnesota. However, there has been discussion about other states such as  Connecticut, Oregon, New Hampshire and California allowing dental therapists to practice. Dental therapists are defined by the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry as ” a licensed oral health professional who practices as part of the dental team to provide educational, clinical and therapeutic patient services. Dental therapists provide basic preventive and restorative treatment to children and adults, and extractions of primary (baby) teeth under the supervision of a dentist. Dental therapists work primarily in settings that serve low-income and under served patients, or in a dental health shortage area.” Individuals participating in dental therapy programs have  training that is significantly shorter than general dentists. A dental therapist must complete at least one year of undergraduate college course work before they can participate in a 2 1/2 year program to teach them the basic skills of local anesthesia, preventative dentistry (such as cleanings and dental sealants), uncomplicated extractions, radiology as well as diagnosis and treatment of cavities. As opposed to general dentists who, in most circumstances, must complete four years of undergraduate college, four years of dental school and in New York state a year of residency. So what exactly is all the commotion about allowing dental therapists to practice in under served areas? There has been a question about how to address the growing need for care, especially with children, however due to therapists limited training the American Dental Association has brought up concerns that they are not equipped to provide the level of care necessary to complete many of the procedures they are being licensed to perform. And, since many are not reversible such as extractions and fillings, there should be better training of these professionals. Other organizations have made the argument that patients that have medicaid or are in areas with a poor dentist to patient ratio are unable to receive appropriate dental care due to cost of dentistry and many general dentists not accepting these patients into their practices. So the conundrum is how do we provide appropriate care for this needful population  in a safe and ethical way.  Are dental therapists the solution to this problem or the creation of an even bigger problem?]]>

  • A dental crown may also be referred to as a “cap” but they are the same exact thing.
  • Crowns are often used to replace missing tooth structure in an otherwise structurally unstable tooth. This can be due to the tooth having lost tooth structure from either being fractured, having had a large cavity or a very large filling, or from the tooth having had a root canal.
  • Crowns can also be used in place of veneers to create a more esthetic smile or for a radical smile makeover in a person where veneers are not recommended.
  • Most crowns are fabricated at a dental laboratory and are made using various materials such as: porcelain fused to metal, porcelain fused to zirconia or solid zirconia, porcelain or metal. Because the dental lab manufactures the crowns most often the crown procedure is not completed in a single day.
  • A bridge is an extension of a crown, where multiple crowns are fused or linked together to replace a missing tooth or teeth.
  • The crown procedure is normally as follows: the area is anesthetized initially, and then the tooth, or in the case of a bridge the teeth surrounding the space, will be adjusted for retention of the prosthesis. The tooth or teeth are shaped into a cylindrical shape and and then an impression or mold is taken of the prepared area. The mold is then sent to a dental lab and a bridge or a crown is fabricated. The lab will return the restoration in about 1 1/2 – 2 weeks. The restoration will then be tried in and cemented.
  • The dental crown is a common and important tool used in dentistry to help retain your natural teeth. You should maintain an open dialogue with your dentist about treatment and your personal treatment plan in order to attain the best dental care possible.  ]]>