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Are you looking for the key to achieving the perfect smile? Look no further than dental implants! At Sweet Water Dentistry, we are dedicated to helping you achieve and maintain optimal oral health. Our wide range of services, including dental implants, are designed to give you the beautiful smile you’ve always dreamed of. Whether you’re an adult or a child, we are here to provide you with the highest level of care. We take pride in developing long-lasting relationships with our patients and strive to create a welcoming and relaxing environment. Join our dental family today and let us help you on your journey to the perfect smile!

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Understanding Dental Implants

What are dental implants?

Dental implants are artificial tooth roots made of titanium that are surgically placed into the jawbone to support a replacement tooth or bridge. They provide a strong foundation for natural-looking and functioning teeth.

How dental implants work?

Dental implants work by integrating with the jawbone through a process called osseointegration. The titanium implant, once placed in the jawbone, fuses with the bone over time, creating a stable and durable support for the artificial tooth. This allows the implant to function just like a natural tooth, providing the ability to bite and chew with ease.

Different types of dental implants

There are several types of dental implants, including endosteal implants, subperiosteal implants, and zygomatic implants. Endosteal implants are the most common type and are directly placed into the jawbone. Subperiosteal implants are placed on or above the jawbone but beneath the gums, and they are used for patients with insufficient bone height. Zygomatic implants are used when there is not enough bone in the upper jaw and are anchored to the cheekbone for support.

Why Choose Dental Implants

Natural look and comfortable fit

Dental implants are designed to look and feel like natural teeth. They are custom-made to match the color, shape, and size of your existing teeth, ensuring a seamless blend and a natural-looking smile. Additionally, unlike dentures, implants do not slip or move, providing a comfortable fit that allows you to speak and eat without worry.

Long lasting solution

Dental implants are a long-term solution to tooth loss. With proper care and maintenance, they can last a lifetime, making them a cost-effective option in the long run. Unlike bridges or dentures, which may need to be replaced or adjusted over time, implants offer a durable and permanent solution for missing teeth.

High success rate

Dental implants have a high success rate, with studies showing a success rate of over 95%. This is due to the fact that they are securely integrated into the jawbone, providing stability and longevity. With proper oral hygiene and regular dental check-ups, the success of dental implants can be maintained for years to come.

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Prevents bone loss

When a tooth is lost, the surrounding bone may begin to deteriorate over time. This can lead to changes in facial appearance and further tooth loss. Dental implants stimulate the jawbone, just like natural tooth roots, preventing bone loss and preserving facial structure. This makes dental implants not just a cosmetic solution but also an important aspect of maintaining overall oral health.

The Perfect Smile Starts With Dental Implants!

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Dental Implants Versus Traditional Methods

Comparison with dentures

Dentures are removable appliances that replace missing teeth. While dentures can provide a temporary solution, they can be uncomfortable and may require messy adhesives to stay in place. Dental implants, on the other hand, are permanently fixed into the jawbone, providing a stable and hassle-free solution without the need for adhesives. The natural look and feel of dental implants also surpass that of dentures, offering a more confident smile.

Comparison with bridges

Bridges are another traditional method used to replace missing teeth. However, they rely on adjacent teeth for support, which may require those healthy teeth to be modified and capped with crowns. Dental implants, on the other hand, do not rely on adjacent teeth for support and stand independently, preserving the integrity of your natural teeth. Additionally, bridges may only last 10-15 years, while dental implants can last a lifetime with proper care.

Comparison with crowns

Crowns are used to restore damaged or decayed teeth. While crowns can improve the appearance and functionality of individual teeth, they do not address the issue of missing teeth. Dental implants provide a comprehensive solution for tooth loss, replacing both the root and the crown, resulting in a more natural and permanent solution.

The Dental Implant Procedure

Consultation and planning

The dental implant procedure begins with a thorough consultation and planning phase. During this step, your dentist will evaluate your oral health, bone structure, and overall suitability for dental implants. They will take into account factors such as your medical history, any medications you are taking, and any existing oral health issues. X-rays, 3D scans, and impressions may be taken to assist in the planning process.

Implant placement

Once the planning phase is complete, the actual implant placement procedure can begin. The dentist will carefully make an incision in the gum tissue to expose the jawbone. A small hole is then drilled into the bone, and the implant is carefully inserted. The gum tissue is sutured back together, leaving the implant underneath the gums to fuse with the bone through osseointegration.

Recovery and healing process

After implant placement, a period of healing is required to allow the implant to integrate with the jawbone. This can take several weeks to several months, depending on the individual case. During this time, it is important to follow post-operative instructions provided by your dentist, which may include guidelines for oral hygiene, diet, and pain management.

Attaching artificial tooth

Once the implant has fully integrated with the jawbone and the healing process is complete, an abutment is placed on top of the implant. This serves as a connector between the implant and the artificial tooth. Finally, a custom-made artificial tooth, also known as a dental crown, is attached to the abutment, completing the dental implant restoration. The crown is designed to match the color, shape, and size of your existing teeth, ensuring a natural and seamless result.

The Perfect Smile Starts With Dental Implants!

Dental Implants and Oral Health

Proper cleaning of dental implants

Proper oral hygiene is essential for maintaining the health and longevity of dental implants. It is important to brush and floss regularly, just like with natural teeth, to remove plaque and bacteria. Additionally, using an antimicrobial mouthwash can help prevent infection around the implant site. Your dentist will provide specific instructions on how to care for your dental implants to ensure optimal oral health.

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Regular dental check-ups

Regular dental check-ups are crucial for monitoring the health of your dental implants and overall oral health. During these visits, your dentist will thoroughly examine your implants, assess the gum tissue, and take X-rays to check for any signs of complications or issues. Regular check-ups allow early detection and treatment of any potential problems, ensuring the long-term success of your dental implants.

Preventing gum disease around the implants

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, can be a risk factor for dental implants. It is important to maintain good oral hygiene practices and visit your dentist regularly to prevent gum disease and its potential impact on the stability of your dental implants. Your dentist may recommend professional cleanings and specialized oral hygiene techniques to keep your gums healthy and protect the long-term success of your dental implants.

Who Is A Candidate For Dental Implants?

Necessary dental and physical health

To be a candidate for dental implants, it is important to have generally good dental and physical health. Certain oral health conditions, such as gum disease or untreated tooth decay, may need to be addressed before undergoing the implant procedure. Additionally, underlying medical conditions, such as diabetes or autoimmune disorders, may affect the healing process and the suitability for dental implants.

Adequate bone structure

One of the key factors for successful implant placement is having adequate bone structure in the jaw. The implant needs a solid foundation to fuse with, so if there is significant bone loss, a bone grafting procedure may be necessary to build up the bone before implant placement. Your dentist will assess the quality and quantity of your jawbone through imaging techniques to determine if additional procedures are required.

Non-smokers or willing to quit

Smoking can significantly affect the success of dental implants. It can impair the healing process, increase the risk of infection, and compromise the stability of the implant. Therefore, it is ideal for candidates to be non-smokers or willing to quit smoking before and after the implant procedure to maximize the chances of a successful outcome.

Willingness to maintain good oral hygiene

Proper oral hygiene is crucial for the long-term success of dental implants. Candidates for dental implants should be committed to maintaining good oral hygiene practices, including regular brushing, flossing, and professional cleanings. They should also be willing to follow any additional instructions provided by their dentist to ensure the health and longevity of their dental implants.

Potential Risks and Complications with Dental Implants


Infection is a potential risk following dental implant surgery. Proper oral hygiene and following post-operative care instructions can greatly reduce the risk of infection. If an infection does occur, it can usually be treated with antibiotics. In rare cases, the implant may need to be removed temporarily until the infection is resolved.

Neurological damage

During the implant placement procedure, there is a small risk of damage to nearby nerves or blood vessels. This can result in temporary or permanent numbness, tingling, or altered sensation in the lips, tongue, or chin. Your dentist will carefully plan the implant placement to minimize the risk of complications and take all necessary precautions to ensure your safety during the procedure.

Implant failure

While dental implant failure is rare, it can occur. Factors that can contribute to implant failure include poor oral hygiene, smoking, underlying medical conditions, and inadequate bone structure. However, with proper planning, good oral hygiene practices, and regular check-ups, the risk of implant failure can be minimized.

Mitigation of risks

To mitigate the risks associated with dental implants, it is important to choose a skilled and experienced dentist who specializes in implant dentistry. They will carefully evaluate your specific case, take into account all relevant factors, and create a comprehensive treatment plan tailored to your needs. Following their instructions, maintaining good oral hygiene, and attending regular check-ups will help maximize the success and minimize the risks associated with dental implants.

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Cost Factors for Dental Implants

Assessment and consultation fee

The cost of dental implants can vary depending on several factors. Typically, the process starts with an assessment and consultation fee, which covers the initial examination, X-rays, and treatment planning. This fee allows your dentist to evaluate your case and determine the best treatment approach for your specific needs.

Cost of the dental implant

The cost of the dental implant itself is another factor to consider. This includes the titanium implant, the abutment, and the crown. The type and quality of the implant materials, as well as the complexity of the case, can influence the cost. Your dentist will discuss the options available and provide a breakdown of the costs involved.

Surgical procedure costs

The surgical procedure to place the dental implant is a significant component of the overall cost. This includes the time and expertise of the dentist, the use of anesthesia, and any necessary sedation. The complexity of the case, the number of implants needed, and any additional procedures required, such as bone grafting, can impact the surgical costs.

Additional procedures if required

In some cases, additional procedures may be necessary to prepare the mouth for dental implants. This may include extractions, bone grafting, or gum tissue grafting. These procedures can contribute to the overall cost of the treatment. Your dentist will assess your specific needs and discuss any additional procedures required and their associated costs.

Insurance and Finance Options for Dental Implants

Insurance coverage

Insurance coverage for dental implants varies depending on the insurance provider and the specific policy. Some dental insurance plans may cover a portion of the cost of dental implants, while others may not offer coverage at all. It is important to check with your insurance provider and understand the extent of your coverage before undergoing the implant procedure.

Payment plans

Many dental offices offer flexible payment plans to help make dental implants more affordable. These payment plans allow you to spread out the cost of the treatment over time, making it easier to budget for the expense. Your dental office will provide information about their available payment plans and help you choose the option that suits your financial situation.

Healthcare credit cards

Healthcare credit cards, such as CareCredit, are an alternative financing option for dental implants. These credit cards can be used specifically for medical and dental expenses and often offer promotional financing options, such as interest-free periods. Healthcare credit cards can provide a flexible and convenient way to manage the cost of dental implants.

In-office financing options

Some dental offices may offer in-house financing options, allowing you to finance your dental implant treatment directly through the dental practice. These financing options can provide more flexibility and convenience, as they are tailored to the specific needs of the dental office and their patients. Your dental office can provide more information about their in-office financing options.

Sweet Water Dentistry – Your Partner for Dental Implants

About Sweet Water Dentistry

Sweet Water Dentistry is a dental practice located in Fairhope, AL, dedicated to providing exceptional dental care to patients of all ages. Their team of skilled professionals is committed to helping patients achieve and maintain optimal oral health. With a focus on personalized care and patient comfort, Sweet Water Dentistry strives to create a welcoming and relaxing environment for their patients.

Dr. Phillip N. Greer and his team

Dr. Phillip N. Greer is the leading dentist at Sweet Water Dentistry. With a passion for dentistry and a commitment to ongoing education and training, Dr. Greer stays at the forefront of the latest advancements in dental implants and other dental procedures. Alongside his team of experienced dental professionals, Dr. Greer provides comprehensive dental care in a compassionate and friendly manner.

Mission statement

The mission of Sweet Water Dentistry is to serve the community wholeheartedly by providing excellent dentistry in a relaxing environment down by the bay. Their team demonstrates love, peace, patience, kindness, and gentleness to all their patients. They strive to be the most welcoming and relaxing dental practice in the Gulf Coast region, offering excellent dental services and a passion to serve the community.

Contact information

To schedule a consultation or learn more about dental implants and the services offered at Sweet Water Dentistry, you can contact them using the following information:

Sweet Water Dentistry
5915 Sweetwater Cir
Fairhope, AL 36532
(251) 210-2773

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