Dental Implants FAQs

How long does it take to get dental implants?

It depends on the patient, the procedures needed, and your overall health. After tooth extractions, bone grafting, and implant placement, there must be plenty of time for healing and osseointegration of the jawbone and the dental implant. Patients should assume it will take between 4 months and a year. Dr. Greenbaum can give you an accurate timeline for your situation.

  • Dental Implant Consultation – 1 day
  • Pre-Implant Surgeries – This may include surgical tooth extraction, bone grafting, or a sinus lift. Recovery takes anywhere from 3 to 9 months.
  • Implant Placement – The surgery may take anywhere from 30 minutes to 3 hours, depending on the complexity and the number of implants.
  • Healing – Once the implants are in place, the jawbone needs 3-6 months or longer for the tooth implant to fuse with the surrounding jawbone.
  • Creation of the dental restoration – The crown or overdenture is usually crafted during the healing so it is done in time for final placement.
  • Completion – Once the jawbone and soft tissues are sufficiently healed, your replacement teeth are permanently attached.

During most of this time, you can go about your normal routine without discomfort or inconvenience.

Are dental implants safe?

Yes. The overwhelming majority of our patients receive dental implants with no complications and are thrilled with the results. Implants are made of titanium, the same biocompatible used for hip and knee replacements.

A middle-aged man and woman smiling with good teeth

How successful is dental implant surgery?

Dental implant placement is an invasive surgery, so there is always a small chance of complications, such as excessive bleeding, but these are rare. The success rate for dental implants is over 95%, making it one of the most reliable surgeries. Our in-office success rate is 98%.

Is dental implant surgery painful?

No. The area is numbed, so you do not feel any pain. You may also be sedated with nitrous oxide to relax you and ensure your comfort.

The first week following surgery, you will have some swelling and pain. Over-the-counter pain medications and ice packs can usually alleviate pain and inflammation.

What can I eat after dental implant surgery?

For the first two days, you are on a liquid diet. Be sure to drink lots of water to stay hydrated and encourage healing. Food options for the first two days after surgery include milkshakes, yogurt, smoothies, pudding, mashed potatoes, refried beans, hummus, cottage cheese, and liquid nutritional supplements such as Boost or Ensure.

On day three, you can add soft foods such as noodles, macaroni and cheese, scrambled eggs, soft bread, bananas, avocado, and soft-cooked vegetables. You can add soft-cooked meats such as shredded chicken, delicate fish, and ground beef when comfortable. By day seven, you can begin adding firmer foods to your diet. Most patients can eat any food they enjoy within two to three weeks.

Is a dental implant expensive?

We are not going to tell you that dental implants are cheap. They cost more upfront than alternatives such as dentures, but you get a superior solution for missing teeth. Fortunately, dental implants are considered restorative dentistry, meaning they are often covered in whole or part by dental insurance.

The cost of dental implant restoration varies depending on the tooth or teeth being replaced, whether bone grafts are needed, and the complexity of the repair. You get an accurate estimate of the cost before your procedure. Please get in touch with our office if you have questions about the specific price for your dental implants. The staff can assist you in determining your dental coverage and help maximize any coverage to reduce your out-of-pocket costs.

Are full-mouth dental implants even more expensive?

If you are missing all or most of your teeth from your upper or lower jawline, full-mouth dental implants are a surprisingly affordable alternative. We can attach a full arch of replacement teeth to between 4 and six implants rather than installing individual implants to replace every tooth. This eliminates unnecessary surgery and keeps the cost down because there are few surgeries and fewer crowns and implant screws used.

How long do dental implants last?

The titanium implants are designed to last 30 years or longer. Most patients keep theirs for a lifetime. Be sure to brush and floss daily and see your dentist regularly to prevent infection.

Can I get a dental implant right after having a tooth extracted?

It depends. In some instances, we can extract the tooth and immediately place the implant. This depends on your overall health and other issues. We can tell you at the time of extraction whether we can immediately place a dental implant.

Will I have to see another dentist? No – Dr. Greenbaum does it all

No. Dr. Greenbaum does everything from the implant surgery to the final restoration. This eliminates the need for referrals to doctors you do not know. Dr. Greenbaum carefully monitors you through every step of the process for safe, exceptional results.

What makes you not a candidate for dental implants?

There are a few issues that may rule you out as a candidate for dental implants, including:

  • Autoimmune disease
  • Uncontrolled diabetes
  • Blood clotting disorder
  • Periodontal disease
  • Smoking or chewing tobacco
  • Excessive alcohol consumption

If I’m not a candidate for dental implants, what are my options?

Other ways to restore your teeth may work for you, including conventional dentures that sit on the jaw ridge, dental bridges attached to adjacent teeth, and partial dental plates. Any of these can restore your appearance and some function, although they are not permanent and need periodic replacing.

What is the best age to get dental implants?

Any adult is the right age for dental implants. Past patients have received dental implants well into their 70s. Recovery is a bit slower at this age, but our patients love the results. Older adults should get dental implants to continue to eat a healthy diet.

The optimal time to get dental implants is as soon as possible after you lose your teeth or have them extracted.

Can I get a dental implant years after extraction?

Yes, but you will most likely need some bone grafting to build up the integrity, strength, and width of the jawbone ridge so it can support the implants.

How long does it take for the body to accept a dental implant?

If your jawbone accepts the implants, it will immediately begin to osseointegrate, fusing to the implant to create a stable foundation for restorations. In rare instances, your body may reject the titanium implant. Rejection can happen immediately after the implants are placed or years later. If you have any of the following symptoms of dental implant rejection, contact our office, and Dr. Greenbaum will do a thorough checkup:

  • Redness or swelling around the base of the implant
  • Hives on the interior of the mouth and gums
  • Itchy, inflamed skin and gum tissue resembling Eczema
  • Painful, puffy gums
  • Tissue death surrounding the implants (dark or black soft tissues)
  • Bone loss
  • Loosening of previously stable implants
  • Pain when chewing that is new

Dental implants are a life-changing investment in our oral health and give you a chance to once again enjoy everything from smiling to eating well. If you have additional questions about tooth implants, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at Bethesda Office Phone Number 301-530-3600 to schedule a consultation.

Missing Teeth? Consider Dental Implants!

We are accepting New Patients and always look forward to helping you with all your dental needs.

For more information about Dental Implants or to schedule a consultation with Dr. Greenbaum,

Call our Bethesda MD office at (301) 530-3600 or

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