It’s a misconception that you can just walk into any dentist’s office and get dental implants. It doesn’t work like a WalMart or Target.
It is important to understand that dental implants are a significantly different treatment process than traditional crown and bridge, root canal therapy and fillings. The important difference stems from the fact that dental implants require both surgical and restorative expertise and often require extensive training beyond that of the traditional dental school programs.
Because there are no restrictions or specific qualifications for a licensed Dentist to place or restore dental implants, there are many variations in experience, ability, training and materials. Because of this it is often difficult to determine the expertise of any particular clinician. Below is a list of signs a patient should consider prior to trusting their dental professional with the placement and restoration of their dental implants.
Top 5 Signs That You’ve Found a Dental Implant Specialist You Can Trust
#1 Accreditations, Awards, Accolades (and More)
You wouldn’t turn to a general practitioner for advanced spine surgery, so why would you choose a general dentist for your dental implants? Gaining the qualifications necessary to perform a procedure as intimate and complicated as dental implant surgery requires years of training and specialized education. This is why we recommend beginning your search with a certified prosthodontist.
By definition, prosthodontics is the branch of dentistry concerned with the design, manufacture, and fitting of artificial replacements for teeth and other parts of the mouth. Periodontics is the brand of dentistry concerned with the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease, and in the placement of dental implants. Now of course, a clinic that offers dental implant services will have a prosthodontist and periodontist on staff, but that in itself is not enough. To gain complete peace of mind that you’ve come to the right place, you want to see accreditations that speak to the quality of work you’re about to receive.
- Is the team quarterbacked by a Board Certified Specialist in Prosthodontics?
- Do they count a Board Certified Specialist in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery amongst them?
- Is there a list of accreditations, awards, accolades, and qualifications directly related to dental implants?
These can include a Prosthodontics Specialty Diploma, a Doctorate in Medical Dentistry Degree, and a Masters of Sciences in Craniofacial Science from a prestigious university. The prosthodontist may even be a part of a faculty at their alma mater, extending beyond their practice to teach restorative and prosthetic dentistry to the next generation.
Lastly, you will want to make sure that the prosthodontist is a member of key organizations. In Ventura County, California (where you are), those may include the UCLA, the California Dental Association, Dental Specialists Society of California.
We know we’re hitting you with a lot of information here, but in the end, a practice that is led by a prosthodontist that has a deep “resume” (so to speak) and even deeper team is one you can trust. That’s step one in your selection process. Let’s keep reading.
#2 How Important Is Experience?
Besides training, the second most important aspect in optimally placing dental implants is experience. An experienced dental implant surgeon should place numerous implants every month, and the only way to achieve this repetition is to devote much of your practice to this procedure. Prosthodontists are residency trained specialists in implant surgery and have a tremendous amount of experience placing implants. Because Prosthodontists have devoted a large portion of their time to the placement, maintenance and repair of dental implants, they have a unique insight when it comes to evaluating your specific conditions and providing the best guidance and care for your individual needs. Remember, when an implant fails it not only takes the tooth but the supporting bone as well. A poorly placed implant not only sets you back to the beginning but may result in the need for extensive reconstruction and costly additional surgeries.
#3 What About A Warranty?
After you have your brand-new smile, it is important to protect your investment.
For example, you will want to be prepared in the rare case an implant shows any sign of irritation. While an experienced prosthodontist will provide the utmost care for your smile, it is better to be covered by a warranty than not. This is why a dental practice that backs its’ work with a warranty is often more credible than one that does not.
#4 A History of Referrals
One thing that many people don’t think to look for, when considering dental implant specialist options, is whether or not other local practitioners refer their own patients to a given clinic for specialized implant needs. Think about it, when the local health community deems a specialist to be the “go to” solution in the dental implant field, you know you’ve come to the right resource. If a clinic you’re considering is candid about accepting referrals from doctors/dentists, you can check yet another qualifier off of the list.
#5 Rave Reviews from Real People Near You
The best reviews are always by word of mouth. There are online sources for reviews where some information can be found. Although the online reviews are not always credible, they may give you an idea of what to expect.
Pretty much every clinic website out there has a “Testimonials” page, but this feedback has been filtered to feature the good news. What practice would post negative feedback on their own website? Instead, you need to look to non-bias review resources, including Google Reviews, Yelp, and other social sources such as Facebook that won’t allow a business to filter out real consumer (patient) feedback.
Don’t let just anyone try their hand at improving your smile. While implant dentistry that is done correctly is safe, effective, and long lasting, when performed incorrectly, can lead to disaster and major expenses. Be bold about interviewing your dentist. Some dentists offer a free cosmetic/implant consultation so that you can meet and discuss your expectations. Once you find a dentist that meets most of your criteria, proceed with an exam and listen to his or her treatment plan. Discuss financing and scheduling. Make sure you feel comfortable and confident in the dentist’s office. A beautiful, strong, comfortable smile that’s built to last can improve your self-confidence and open doors of opportunities you never knew existed.
Schedule Your Own Private Consultation with Dr. J
Anacapa Dental Art Institute is proud of their dedicated service to Ventura County. Lead by world-renowned top cosmetic prosthodontist Dr. Jivraj and his expert staff, Anacapa has the expertise and facility to handle whatever your cosmetic dental situation may be. Whether it’s a tooth whitening or a full mouth reconstruction, expect nothing but some of the best dental care Ventura County has available.
Call today for a private consultation. Renew your smile, renew your life.
About Your Oxnard, CA Cosmetic Dentist:
We look forward to providing families with exceptional care and advanced treatment options. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Jivraj contact our Oxnard, CA, dental office today by calling 805-988-3317. Our office at 2821 N Ventura Road, Oxnard, CA 93036 welcomes patients in and around Oxnard, CA, including Santa Barbara, Woodland Hills, Ventura, and the surrounding Southern California communities.
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Anacapa Dental Art Institute
We’re proud to help everyone achieve the smile of their dreams. We’re located in Oxnard and serve the surrounding communities including Santa Barbara, Ventura, Camarillo, Thousand Oaks, Woodland Hills, Simi Valley, Calabasas, Port Hueneme, Malibu, and Westlake Village.