Smile Confidently with Dental Implants
For patients struggling with tooth loss, Dr. Rick H. Heard in Victoria, TX, offers dental implants as an innovative alternative to traditional restorations. Using advanced technology, he can embed implant posts directly into the jawbone, creating a solid foundation for custom dental crowns, bridges, or dentures. Dental implants not only help to repair dental form and function, but they also promote oral health by preserving the natural structure of the jaw. As a member of the Academy of Osseointegration and The McGuire Institute™, Dr. Heard is an implant dentist and expert in the field of periodontology. He provides the highest standard of care and education during each dental implants treatment.
What Are Dental Implants?
A dental implant is a small titanium post designed to replace tooth roots at the site of a missing tooth. Dental implants are embedded in the jawbone and fuse with your natural tissue to become a permanent part of your smile. These posts provide a secure, stable foundation for a variety of restorations, including dental crowns, bridges, and dentures.
Are You a Candidate?
To qualify for dental implants, you should be in good oral and overall health. In addition, you must have sufficient jawbone strength to support implant posts. If you have suffered jawbone atrophy at the site of a missing tooth, you may require a preliminary bone graft or sinus lift. As conditions such as gum disease can compromise the success of your procedure, we must also resolve any pre-existing dental concerns with appropriate care before you can proceed with treatment.
The Dental Implants Process
The first step in your treatment involves an initial consultation, during which Dr. Heard can perform a thorough examination of your smile and review your medical history. He may also request x-rays or advanced 3-D images using our dental cone beam computed tomography (CT) scanner to examine the underlying jawbone structure and establish candidacy. He can then design a customized implant placement strategy and treatment plan suited to your needs.
To ensure your comfort, we can administer anesthesia before your procedure. At our practice, we offer intravenous (IV) sedation for its unparalleled reliability and effectiveness. To ensure your safety throughout treatment, a board-certified anesthesiologist from South Texas Anesthesia Group, Dr. Derrick Garrett or Dr. Steve Janecek, can monitor your vitals and adjust the level of sedation.
At our practice, we offer intravenous (IV) sedation for its unparalleled reliability and effectiveness.
Using your 3-D scans as a guide, Dr. Heard can make a small incision in the gums at the site of a missing tooth. He can then create space for your dental implants, before embedding the posts in your jaw. Finally, he can close the incision with sutures.
After undergoing a three to six month healing period, you can return to our office to receive abutments, which are small devices that connect your implant to your restoration. For the right candidates, we can use advanced CEREC technology to design your abutments in-house. Once your abutments are secure, you can return to your primary dentist for restoration placement.
Unlike traditional solutions for missing teeth, dental implants can promote jawbone regrowth after tooth loss and are cared for in the same way as your natural teeth. As a result, these posts can not only improve the aesthetics and function of your smile, but your overall oral health. In addition, implants can:
- Provide increased security and stability for restorations, so they do not slip out of place
- Help to maintain facial shape and structure
- Preserve alignment of teeth
- Offer a more cost effective solution in the long run
- Preserve jawbone strength and density
- Support a variety of restorations
- Improve your ability to chew comfortably and speak clearly
Though dental implants may initially be more expensive than traditional restorations, this solution is an investment into the longterm health and aesthetics of your smile. Not only can implant posts dramatically improve your quality of life, but they can also help you to avoid more costly restorative procedures in the future.
Repair Your Smile
Whether you have sustained minimal or extensive tooth loss, dental implants can restore your smile, so you can chew, speak, and smile with confidence. To find out if dental implants are right for you, contact us online or call us today at (361) 573-1014 and schedule your consultation with Dr. Heard.
“After multiple years of avoiding a dental issue, I visited Dr. Heard. In a short period of time, I went from what I thought was a hopeless dental problem, to a complete solution. I now have a full understanding of my procedure, the timeline, and even exact costs.” Satisfied Patient