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2117 Custer Dr. Fort Collins, CO 80525
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2117 Custer Dr. Fort Collins, CO 80525

Dental Implants

Saying Goodbye to Missing Teeth

An older woman smiling while in the dentist chair

Are you wanting to laugh again? Do you miss smiling in pictures? Missing teeth can cause you to miss out on some of the finer parts of life but fortunately, it doesn’t have to stay that way. With dental implants in Fort Collins, Dr. Shiloh Lindsey can restore your teeth to their former beauty, giving you a longer-lasting, fully functional smile. If you’re ready to say goodbye to the gaps and hello to a new way of life, contact us today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Lindsey.

The 4-Step Dental Implant Process

dental implant being placed in the upper arch

Because dental implants rebuild your teeth from the roots up, the treatment process is more complex and takes longer than that of dentures or dental bridges. It might be several months to a year or more until your new smile is complete. Although dental implants are a significant time investment, the end result is more than worth it!

To ensure your treatment is successful, Dr. Lindsey partners with the best local specialists for the surgical portions of the dental implant process. While the exact details of how dental implants work in Fort Collins might vary from patient to patient, here is a basic breakdown of the process: 

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Initial Dental Implant Consultation

woman at a dental implant consultation

The first step in the dental implant process is having a consultation with Dr. Lindsey. This appointment gives her an opportunity to thoroughly examine your mouth and determine your eligibility for dental implant treatment. Based on her findings, she can begin formulating a treatment plan and outline what you can expect as the process goes on. You’ll have a chance to ask any questions you may have; our team is happy to answer them!

Some patients might need to undergo certain preparatory treatments, like bone grafting or gum disease therapy, before their mouth is ready to support dental implants. If that’s the case, Dr. Lindsey will incorporate those procedures into your overall treatment plan.

Dental Implant Surgery

dentists performing dental implant surgery

Once you’re ready, Dr. Lindsey will refer you to a trusted implant dentist in Fort Collins for the dental implant placement surgery. The idea of oral surgery might seem daunting, but rest assured that you’ll remain comfortable throughout the procedure. Your mouth will be numbed and you’ll most likely be under the effects of sedation.

The oral surgeon will make incisions in your gums to access your jawbone. Next, they’ll insert the implants at precise angles and locations throughout your jaw. The incisions are closed, and you can then begin the healing process.

Dental Implant Osseointegration & Abutment

single dental implant post integrating with the lower jawbone

Soon after your surgery is complete, osseointegration begins. This biological process of the implants merging with your jawbone is what makes dental implants in Fort Collins so successful. Osseointegration usually takes between three and six months, but once it’s finished, your replacement teeth will have a reliable, lasting foundation.

After osseointegration, you might need to undergo a second, smaller surgery to receive your abutments. Abutments are small metal attachments that allow your restoration to be secured onto your implants. Some patients are able to get their abutments on the same day as their implant placement surgery, but some have to wait until their jaw has healed.

Delivery of Dental Implant Restoration(s)

crown and abutment being placed on a dental implant post

Depending on how many teeth you’re replacing, we can attach a custom-made dental crown, bridge, or denture on top of your implants to complete your smile. These restorations are carefully crafted to mimic the exact size, shape, and color of your original pearly whites to ensure seamless results. We work with a trusted dental lab in the area, and once we receive your replacement teeth, all that’s left to do is place them atop your implants!

Benefits of Dental Implants

A younger man smiling at himself in the mirror at the dentist’s office

Dental implants in Fort Collins are considered one of the most superior methods of tooth replacement. Offering a wide array of advantages that cannot be achieved with traditional options (i.e., fixed bridge, partial or full dentures), it is hard for patients to pass up this type of treatment. Not only do they provide a solution that can last for decades, but they also work to improve your oral health.

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Day-to-Day Benefits

close-up of a woman smiling with a dental implant crown

A recent survey revealed that about one-third of denture wearers felt limited by their prosthetics. If you can relate, it may be time to discuss your other options with an implant dentist in Fort Collins. Some of the ways that dental implants can improve your everyday life include:

  • The freedom to eat most foods – Dental implants are fully stabilized in your jawbone, granting you the power to chew as easily as you did before tooth loss.
  • A confident smile – Your restorations (the crowns, bridges, or dentures that are installed atop your implants) are designed to precisely mimic your natural teeth. No one who looks at your smile will even be able to tell that you have implants!
  • Clear speech – Traditional dentures are notorious for coming loose and slipping around when you’re trying to talk, creating speech impediments like whistling, clicking, or lisping. In contrast, you can trust that your implant-supported teeth will remain firmly in place.

Health Benefits

elderly couple buying fresh produce

The benefits of dental implants in Fort Collins go far beyond making your day-to-day life easier. They also provide such health advantages as:

  • Strengthening your jawbone – After teeth are lost, the jawbone loses the stimulation it once received from the teeth’s roots. As a result, the bone begins to deteriorate. Eventually, it can worsen to the point that it’s unable to support your remaining teeth, leading to additional tooth loss as well as a sagging facial appearance. Because dental implants stimulate the jawbone like real teeth, they keep the bone strong in a way that other tooth replacements cannot.
  • Preserving your natural teeth – Placing a conventional dental bridge requires the adjacent teeth to be filed down, increasing the risk of sensitivity and cavities in those teeth. Dental implants can support themselves, so none of your healthy tooth structure has to be removed.
  • Improving your overall health – Tooth loss has been associated with higher risks of medical conditions like heart disease and diabetes. Since dental implants function like real teeth, it stands to reasons that they would prevent such risks.

Long-Term Benefits

elderly couple brushing their teeth

In the long run, dental implants are the superior tooth replacement method because they offer:  

  • Potential to last a lifetime – Dental implants fuse with the surrounding bone and tissue, creating a bone that can last for decades, if not the rest of your life.
  • Cost-effective solution – While dental implants cost more initially, you’ll save money over time by not having to buy a replacement as you would with dentures and bridges, which break down every five to 10 years.
  • Easy maintenance – For the most part, all you have to do to make sure your implants last as long as possible is brush and floss them like regular teeth and visit us for checkups at least twice a year.

Indications for Dental Implants

A person’s mouth with a single tooth implant

Whether you’ve lost one, multiple, or all your teeth, dental implants can be a viable and effective solution to restore your smile.

Missing Single Tooth

Using a single titanium implant post, your dentist in Fort Collins can bring life back to your smile. A single tooth implant consists of the post (implant), an abutment, which attaches to the implant and connects to the restoration, and a custom-made dental crown.

Missing Multiple Teeth

Unlike a fixed bridge that requires altering your natural teeth and uses them as anchors for the prosthetic, an implant bridge leaves your regular teeth alone and instead, uses two dental implants to close the gap and hold the customized dental bridge in place.

Missing All Teeth

An implant-retained denture makes it possible should you lose all your teeth along an arch. Placing between 4 and 6 implant posts along the jawbone, the customized denture will be snapped into place once you are finished healing, which can take anywhere from 3-6 months.

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Start-to-Finish Dental Implant Treatment

A dentist holds a mold with teeth and a dental implant to show a patient

Dr. Lindsey wants to ensure your dental implant placement is a success, which is why she works closely with only the best oral surgeons in the area. Once you complete your consultation with Dr. Lindsey, she will get you set up with a professional who will surgically place your implants. Once you are fully healed, you will return to see Dr. Lindsey, and she will place your custom restoration.

Understanding the Cost of Dental Implants

A person using a calculator while a model of a tooth sits on a desk

The cost of dental implants in Ft. Collins varies from patient to patient and depends on a range of factors. While replacing one tooth may cost a few thousand dollars, full-mouth reconstruction typically goes for tens of thousands of dollars. Those numbers may seem high at first, but it’s important to think about long-term value. Dental implants may last a lifetime, and they offer outstanding benefits that alternative treatments simply cannot deliver. In fact, they last so long that, over the span of a few decades, they may actually be cheaper than some forms of non-implant tooth replacement. They are an investment that offers outstanding returns!

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Preliminary Treatments & Dental Implant Surgery

Happy dental patient undergoing preliminary dental implant treatment

It’s common for patients to require one or more preparatory treatments, such as gum disease therapy, tooth extractions, or a bone graft, before they can receive dental implants in Ft. Collins Each of these services comes with its own distinct price.

The implant placement surgery has a separate cost, which depends largely on how many implants are being placed. Since Dr. Lindsey is able to perform comprehensive implant treatment in-house, we can help you understand all the costs associated with your treatment. You will not have to worry about dealing with the pricing policies of an outside practice.

The Parts of Your Dental Implant

Implant, abutment, and crown isolated against white background

There are quite a few different types of dental implant treatments. Some require just one or two implants, whereas others need four or more implants. Also, keep in mind that there are various implant brands and manufacturers. The specific type of implants used in your procedure will have a bearing on your treatment’s overall cost.

Final Dental Implant Restoration

Close-up of man’s smile with natural-looking dental implant restorations

Implant restorations come at a range of price points. A single crown that replaces one lost tooth may have a relatively low cost. Logically, a multi-unit bridge costs more. If you require full-arch replacement, there may be more than one type of implant denture that you are eligible for. If more than one type of implant restoration may work for you, Dr. Lindsey will help you consider all the pros and cons of your options before you decide how to move forward.

Does My Dental Insurance Cover Dental Implants?

Dental benefits claim form with pen and glasses

Many dental insurance policies do cover dental implants. However, some are behind the times and do not yet provide coverage for them. Our experienced team will help you navigate your benefits. Even if your insurance doesn’t cover the implants themselves, it might cover other parts of your dental implant treatment, such as your final restoration or any necessary preliminary procedures.

Making Dental Implants Affordable

Senior woman happy she could afford dental implants

As your caring implant dentist in Ft. Collins, Dr. Lindsey wants you to be able to afford your new smile. That is why, in addition to helping you with insurance, our practice is please to accept financing through CareCredit. CareCredit is a third-party lender that offers low-interest and no-interest payment plans for dental and medical treatments. If you would like to find out if you qualify for it, we can help you submit your application.

Dental Implant FAQs

Dentist showing patient model of dental implant

Learning the benefits, indications, and cost of dental implants in Ft. Collins is a great first step in determining whether or not they are the right tooth replacement option for you. With that being said, it’s completely natural to still have a few questions on your mind before scheduling an initial consultation. That’s why we have responded to some of the most frequently asked questions below! If you can’t find the answer you are looking for or would prefer to speak directly with our team, don’t hesitate to give us a call.

How Long Do Dental Implants Last? 

One of the amazing benefits of dental implants is that they last several times longer than traditional bridges and dentures. In fact, with proper care, they can last 30+ years! Ultimately, the lifespan of yours largely depends on your oral hygiene routine. To keep them in pristine condition for years to come, you must brush, floss, and rinse with mouthwash daily. Biannual dental checkups and professional cleanings with our dental team are also crucial in their success. And, lastly, make sure to avoid poor oral habits, like using your teeth as a tool or chewing on hard and sticky foods.

What Can Cause Dental Implants to Fail?

Although dental implants boast an impressive 95% success rate, it is possible for them to become loose, fall out, or otherwise fail. Typically, this occurs for one of two reasons: peri-implantitis and failed osseointegration. Peri-implantitis develops as a result of poor oral hygiene, damaging the bone and gums that support the dental implant. Failed osseointegration, on the other hand, is when the dental implant and the jawbone don’t properly fuse together. Other common causes include chronic teeth grinding, tobacco use, and certain medications. To minimize your risk of experiencing any complications, our implant dentist in Ft. Collins will complete an extensive exam before your procedure and provide guidelines for minimizing your risk of implant failure afterward.

Will People Be Able to Tell That I Have Dental Implants?

Fortunately, modern dental implants don’t just feel natural, they look natural as well. Since each tooth-replacement is custom-made to match the size, shape, and shade of the missing tooth, the end-result is extremely lifelike. So much so that when your restoration is in place, even your closest loved ones will have a hard time differentiating them from your natural teeth. Plus, they replace your entire tooth’s structure, from root to crown, ensuring no uncomfortable movement while you talk, laugh, or chew.

Is There Anything I Shouldn’t Eat with Dental Implants?

Since dental implants are crafted from sturdy titanium, strong porcelain, and other high-quality materials, they are incredibly durable, allowing you to enjoy all your favorite foods with ease. With that being said, it is best to stick to soft foods, like yogurt and soup, following your surgery. Once you’ve fully recovered, you can begin to work your way back up to your usual diet. Just make sure to avoid sticky candy, hard nuts, and other foods that can damage or dislodge your restoration.