Frequently Asked Questions

Select a procedure from the list below to view FAQs.

All-On-4 “Teeth in a Day”

Snap-In Implant Dentures

Single Tooth Implants and Bridges

Dentures

All-On-4 “Teeth in a Day”

Snap-In Implant Dentures

Single Tooth Implants and Bridges

Dentures

All-On-4

“Teeth in a Day”

Can I eat with my new teeth immediately?

Yes! However, although your implants and teeth are securely in place immediately, we do request that you keep up a soft foods diet during the four month healing timeframe. So what do we mean? A good general rule is that you can eat anything that can be can cut with a plastic fork. We ask this because you are investing into something that could last you decades, even the rest of your life, and maintaining a soft food diet during the healing period will allow the best possible integration of your implants into the bone and help establish a great outcome long-term.

How long has this procedure been around?

This transformative procedure was created by Portuguese dentist Paolo Malo in the 1990s. Since that time, this procedure has safely been performed on hundreds of thousands of patients and has been improved upon to what you see today.

How do I take care of my dental implants?

Taking care of your new teeth is very easy, however consistency is key. Similar to how we’re supposed to routinely floss and brush natural teeth, you need do this with the new teeth and implants. A few minutes a day is all you will need to keep your implants and mouth healthy. Regularly brushing your bridges with a soft tooth brush and cleaning beneath them with a water flosser (WaterPik is a well-known and popular brand) a few times a day is all it takes.

Cigarette smoking can increase the risk of implant complications, so we do not recommend smoking with dental implants. Patients with diabetes should also be made aware of an increased risk for problems with dental implants. Controlling your diabetes is paramount for the long-term success of your implants.

Other than that, regularly follow through with your doctor consistently during the year for quick evaluations of your new implant teeth.

What do the new implant teeth feel like?

Your new implant teeth will bring a new sensation and will take several days or sometimes a few weeks to become accustomed to.

Is there a lot of pain involved in this procedure?

Although you can expect moderate pain, it is similar to the pain common with standard teeth extractions. We use a combination of medications to help control the pain and keep you as comfortable as we can.

Will there be pain after this procedure?

While experiences will vary some, most patients can expect some soreness and possibly swelling afterwards. Many patients come in the next day for their follow-up exam reporting minimal pain. All patients are prescribed medication for pain to help reduce any discomfort. Also, if you are a candidate for it, the doctor will give you a steroid injection which will: help reduce swelling and pain for the first days of recovery.

What recovery time can I expect with All-on-4 dental implants?

Experiences will vary from person to person, but, generally speaking, the recovery period is faster and easier with this procedure than other full arch or full mouth replacement alternatives. This is mostly due to the bridges being attached directly to the bone via the implants. Conventional dentures and implant dentures both require recovery periods during which time the dentures are able to move and lead to sore spots. Generally, pain should subside mostly within 1-2 weeks, with full healing commonly after 6 months.

What is the difference between your practice vs. a general dental practice offering a wide scope of dental services?

We limit our practice to dental prosthetics and implants. Dental implants, and especially "teeth-in-a-day," are our passion, and our team is continually working to ensure our patients get the best possible results. Many offices will refer you to multiple providers, use outside labs, and have confusing pricing. They will take several months or even years to complete the procedure all the while charging you up to double our price. Your dental surgeon will perform the entire procedure from surgery to final teeth. We provide an in-house dental lab and experienced lab technician, along with affordable and transparent pricing. By offering all these services at one location, we are able to deliver a premium service at an affordable price.

What is the difference between Tacoma Dentures and Implants and corporate implant centers?

Tacoma Dentures and Implants has the same advantages of the national implant offices by focusing our practice on dental implants and prosthetics. Our office has an on-site dental prosthetic lab, very competitive pricing, and offer teeth the same day. However, we are privately owned, and every single patient will be seen by our doctor. We focus on the happiness of our patients instead of shareholders, sales quotas, and cost cutting. With corporate dental implant centers, there is no guarantee that you'll be seen by the same dentist that has the great online reviews or whom you were recommended to see. Our doctor oversees your procedure from beginning to end and our team will do everything we can to make sure you are thrilled with your new teeth and take care of you like family.

How does this compare to snap in dentures or mini dental implants?

Mini dental implants are not related to what we do at Columbus Dentures and Implants for our All-On-4 "teeth-in-a-day " procedure. Please proceed cautiously at any office recommending mini dental implants as a permanent restoration solution. They have a very high failure and complication rate.

Snap-in implant dentures, on the other hand, can be a great option for some patients. Our office also provides this option and have an entire page dedicated to snap-in dentures if you want to learn more. These can be a more economical alternative to All-On-4 "teeth-in-a-day" dental implants.

How often should I have my new teeth professionally cleaned?

Plan to (visit us every six months to have your implants checked and cleaned. Doing this will help ensure the longevity of your new teeth and implants.

Can dental implants fail?

Although titanium dental implants do have a 95+% success rate, yes, they can still fail. Some of the things that may cause them to fail:

  • Failure to bond to the bone
  • Tobacco use
  • Diabetes

If an implant fails during the first year, our dentist will replace it for free.

Why am I salivating (drooling) so much?

Excess saliva is perfectly normal when you first have an implant placed in your mouth. Your body senses it as foreign material and is working to “flush” it out. The increased salivation should subside within 2-3 days.

Can I be put under for my procedure?

Our office does not currently put patients to sleep, we do, however, provide both oral & IV conscious sedatives. Click here to learn more about your options. The medicine will help to relax you and typically makes it so you won't remember your procedure. For this, the doctor writes you a prescription, and you can pick it up at your pharmacy of choice. NOTE: You MUST have a driver to and from for your procedure, because of the sedation medication. You MUST NOT operate a motor vehicle or any machinery after taking your medication.

Are All-On-4 bridges always attached to the implants the day of the procedure?

In most cases these will be attached immediately. In certain cases, mostly dependent on the quality of your bone and volume, we would be unable to install your bridge(s) the same day and you'll need to wear an interim healing denture while your implants fuse to the bone. Your doctor will review this thoroughly at your examination.

How long can I expect to bleed after surgery?

Significant bleeding will stop before you leave the clinic, however, you can expect to have some slight bleeding (oozing) for a few days after your procedure. In addition, you will most likely see increased salivation when we first put your temporary teeth in. When this increased saliva mixes with a small amount of blood, it can look like a lot of blood. If heavy bleeding continues, please call our office.

Will I automatically know how to use my prosthetic teeth immediately?

Just like you would need practice in order to get used to functioning with a prosthetic leg, it will need some patience and practice to become accustomed with your prosthetic teeth. With that being said, since these are rigidly attached to your jaw, All-On-4 dental implants will be the easiest to get used to of all the full-arch replacement options.

Will I know how to talk with my new teeth right away?

Again, this will take some time, but with a little practice and patience, your tongue and mouth will adjust quickly. "S’s" will be the toughest to pronounce. Practicing saying words like "stupendous" and "Mississippi" will help you get accustomed to your prosthetic teeth. In a few cases, patients may have a slight lisp long-term with All-On-4 upper teeth.

How long after my procedure do I need to wait to use a Waterpik or water flosser?

Patients should expect to wait six weeks after the procedure before you begin cleaning with your water flosser.

Am I too young for this procedure?

No, this is not only for senior citizens. It’s actually very common for people in their 40s, 30s, and even 20s to need their teeth replaced. Replacing bad teeth can be very beneficial to your overall health, and having the ability to speak, smile, and laugh confidently with teeth you can be of can benefit your psychological health.

What items should I have ready ahead of the procedure?

  • Ice packs

  • Wash cloths you wouldn't mind throwing away

     

  • Comfortable clothes you wouldn't mind throwing away

     

  • Soft foods (see list above)

What will my replacement teeth be made of?

The final bridge is made from zirconia. Zirconia is much stronger and more resistant to staining and wear than conventional acrylic All-On-4 implants which other offices provide. If you choose another provider, make sure you know what kind of material they will be using. If you do decide on acrylic denture teeth with a titanium bar at a different office, you can expect to see staining around your teeth and to replace them every five to ten years. Also, make sure you understand how much you are going to pay for the operation, temporary teeth, and final new teeth. Many offices will charge you a surgery/temporary fee only for you to find out you owe an extra five to fifteen thousand dollars for your final teeth.

How much can I expect to pay for the All-On-4, "Teeth in a Day" procedure?

The total cost for a single arch (upper or lower) is $19,900. For both arches, the total cost will be $39,000. These prices include the removal of any remaining teeth, placing your implants, same day fixed temporary teeth, and your fixed permanent zirconia teeth. Other providers may charge an operation fee, temporary fee, and then surprise you afterward with another fee for your permanent teeth. Our pricing is fully transparent, and we will never surprise you with any additional fees.

How can I get fixed teeth in only one day? I thought the implants needed to heal first?

What is unique about this procedure, and what lets us attach teeth your implants immediately, is that all of the implants will be rigidly splinted together by the new teeth (the implant bridge). Splinting them together prevents the micro-movement of the dental implants that can lead to early failure. Basically, your implants and dental bridge all support each other.

Your dental implants are made of titanium, the same metal used in artificial hip and knee joints, so your jawbone will naturally grow around and attach to them over time.

What if a different provider has said that I am not a candidate for this or do not have enough bone for dental implants?

The majority of patients who have been told they aren't candidates for dental implants are actually great candidates for the All-On-4 procedure. The combination of utilizing angled implants and using the front of the jaw where the bone is denser lets us perform the procedure for many patients who thought implants were not an option. Our team can usually perform this procedure without the need for expensive grafting that delays treatment by months or years. Please come see us for a free consultation to see if you are a candidate.

Can the extractions, implants, and fixed teeth really be completed in the same day?

Yes! Completing all steps in the same day is our preferred way of performing this procedure to support an ideal final result. With the leading dental implants and materials available today, there is usually no reason for you to wait months or even years to complete the process like patients experienced in the past.

Is your doctor a specialist such as a peridontist, oral surgeon, or prosthodontist?

No, our doctor is a general dentist who limits their practice to prosthetics and dental implantology. This area of expertise is their passion, and they have more experience placing dental implants than most specialists and other general dentists. In limited select cases, they will collaborate with other dental specialists to ensure that their patients receive the best possible treatment for their specific situation.

How do you provide the All-On-4, "Teeth in a Day" dental implant procedure for far less than other offices in the area?

Because of the high number of these procedures we perform and limiting our practice to these procedures, we have advantages that other practices do not have. We have our in-house lab and lab technician along with a single dentist that performs the entire procedure. These efficiencies allows us to offer these procedures for our patients at the most competitive pricing available. Not only do we have the lowest prices, we also use the best quality dental implants and materials.

Are payment plans available?

Yes. Our practice offers a variety of payment plans including third party financing. We work with our patients in any way possible to get them smiling again.

Click here for financing options.

Do you offer guarantees or warranties?

If a dental implant fails to integrate we will replace it at no cost. Our office warranties the final dental bridge for 5 years. To keep this warranty, patients must return to the office every 6 months for maintenance and hygiene of their bridges and implants. This warranty does not apply to patients that continue to use nicotine products or have uncontrolled diabetes or develop other uncontrolled systemic conditions which compromise their implants.

How long will the procedure take?

Usually the surgery is about 1 hour per arch. Then, the lab portion of making your teeth takes another 2 hours. If we start in the morning, for a single upper or lower arch, patients are usually done by lunch time. If we are replacing both top and bottom teeth, we usually finish closer to 2:30 to 3:30 in the afternoon. Most of this time is waiting for your teeth to be created in our lab and trying them in to ensure your smile is exactly how you want it. It is a long day, but will definitely be worth it in the end!

What if I don’t like my new teeth?

Our team does everything possible to ensure you're thrilled with your new teeth. The teeth you get the day of surgery are only a temporary/transitional set. When we fabricate your final teeth, you will have full control of the design and appearance of your smile.

What about out of town dentists in Florida, Las Vegas, etc. offering same day final teeth?

While this is a good service for many patients, in the rare case of complications or broken teeth, it is very difficult to deal with if you traveled thousands of miles away or out of the country. Most local practices will not be willing to repair another practice's work. A major advantage of having a temporary set of fixed teeth on the day of your surgery is that you get to test them out and see what you like and don't like. For the final zirconia or nano-ceramic teeth, we can offer try-ins to ensure that your teeth look exactly the way you want them to look. While it’s great to get your final teeth immediately, it can come with some significant drawbacks which cannot be ignored.

Do All-On-4 teeth rock (side to side, front to back)?

No, they are firmly attached to your dental implants, which are firmly anchored to your jaw. If your All-On-4 teeth begin moving for any reason, call us so we can bring you in for an exam.

Why do you call this procedure "teeth in a day" when I won’t receive my final teeth until 4-6 months after the procedure?

This is referred to as "teeth in a day" because you will receive a set of implant-supported working prosthetic temporary teeth in one day. As there can often significant changes in your mouth during the healing and implant integration phase, it is best to begin with a transitional set of teeth. This helps ensure the best long-term outcome with your final teeth.

Can my temporary teeth be damaged?

Yes, your temporary teeth are made of acrylic and can crack, chip, and sometimes break. This can be quite common. The great thing about the acrylic temporary is that it can easily be repaired. If you have any issues with the temporary, just give us a call and we’ll get it repaired right away.

Can my permanent teeth be damaged?

While it is possible for zirconia and nano-ceramic to be damaged, it’s very rare. Zirconia and nano-ceramic are among the strongest and most durable materials available in dentistry.

I already have a dental implant (or implants), can they be used for All-On-4?

Unfortunately, not. As your current dental implants will not be the proper position required by this procedure, and since bone reduction will need to be performed, we cannot use your existing implants and they will most likely need to be removed.

Are my All-On-4 bridges removable?

No, you cannot remove these yourself. Only the dentist is able to remove them. They are secured to your implants.

Can food get under my All-On-4 bridge(s)?

Yes, any prosthetic in the mouth will get some amount of food under it. You can rinse with water to get food out from under your bridge(s), and cleaning every day with a water flosser will be part of your long-term hygiene regimen.

How much time should I take off work for recovery after surgery?

Of all full arch replacement options, All-On-4 often has the shortest time required to recover. Generally 4-7 days is enough. That being said, since there is always the chance of bruising and swelling, and you’ll need to get used to speaking and eating with your new teeth, the more time you can take off, the better.

How many implants are needed?

An upper implant denture will require at least 4 dental implants. A lower implant denture will need at least 2 dental implants. The more dental implants you have, the more stable your denture will usually be. This is especially true for the lower denture. Three or four implants in the lower is typically much better than 2.

How much do implant dentures cost?

For pricing information on snap-in implant dentures click here!

I have had dentures for quite a while, can I still get implants?

In many cases, yes! We’ll just need to see you for a free exam, during which we will perform a 3D CBCT scan of your mouth to see if you have enough bone for dental implants.

Will I get to use my implants (snap my dentures on to them) the same day of the procedure?

Unfortunately no, we need to allow time for the implants to integrate with the bone. This is what makes the implants truly secure and will help ensure you enjoy many years, or decades, of use out of them. We usually wait between four and six months before attaching to your implants.

Will there be pain after the procedure?

While experiences will be different, you should expect some discomfort and possibly swelling after your procedure. Many patients come in the following day for their post op appointment, reporting minimal discomfort. You will receive a pain medication prescription to help alleviate any tenderness.

Can general anesthesia be used during my procedure?

Our practice does not currently put patients to sleep, however, we do offer both oral & IV conscious sedation. To learn more about these options click here. The medication will help to relax you and often makes it so you don’t even remember the procedure. For this, we will write a prescription, which you can pick it up at your local pharmacy. NOTE: A driver is REQUIRED for your procedure, someone who can drive you once you have taken your oral sedation pill(s). You MUST NOT operate a motor vehicle or any machinery after taking your medication.

Are implant dentures really secure?

Yes! They are much more secure than dentures alone, and we are able to increase the retention with even stronger inserts if you prefer.

Can I remove the palate (roof of mouth) of the denture?

It depends. Ideally, we would need to spread out the dental implants in order to remove a portion of the palate in a snap-in denture. With our All-On-4 procedure, we can guarantee the ability to remove the palate, however that's not always an option with snap-in dentures.

When we are able to remove the palate, this increases the sense of taste for many patients, and also increases hot and cold sensitivity, creating a more natural experience. For those patients with a severe gag reflex, removing the palate of the denture can also help provide relief.

When will I be able to have the palate (center part covering the roof of the mouth) removed from my denture?

If you are a candidate for a palate-less denture, it will be removed from the denture. This is after healing and osseointegration are complete and we are ready to attach to your implants, usually 4-6 months after placement of your implants.

How frequently will my implant inserts require changing?

Usually 1 to 2 times per year. This often depends on how many implants you have, the strength of your bite, how often you take your dentures in and out, and many other factors.

WARNING: PLEASE DO NOT BITE YOUR DENTURES INTO PLACE ON YOUR IMPLANTS! This will wear down your inserts much faster. Only place your implant dentures in by hand.

What is alveoloplasty? Why is it important?

Alveoplasty is a procedure where the doctor contours your jawbone. This procedure is important because it can significantly improve the fit and comfort of your dentures.

What are tori? Must they be removed?

Tori are bony knots that can develop in the mouth of some patients. They are not harmful, however, they might prevent your denture(s) from fitting comfortably, so your doctor will often recommend having them removed.

Why am I salivating (drooling) so much?

This is completely normal when you first have the prosthesis (denture) placed in your mouth. Your body senses it as a foreign object and attempts to “flush” it out. The increased salivation should stop within two to three days.

How long will I bleed after the procedure?

Significant bleeding will have stopped before you leave our office, however, expect to have some slight bleeding (oozing) for 1-3 days after the procedure. Also, you might notice increased salivation when we first put your denture(s) in. When this increased saliva mixes with a small amount blood, it can look like a lot of blood. If heavy bleeding does not stop, please call our office.

An old home remedy which still works really well to encourage clotting and reduce bleeding is the use of tea bags. Just get a standard tea bag, get it damp, squeeze out the excess water, place it on the extraction site (or sites), and the bags will help you clot. Multiple tea bags can be used if needed. Replace the tea bags if they get saturated with blood. The process can be repeated as many times as you need.

Do you offer this procedure with zirconia (non-metal) implants?

We do not currently offer this type of implant. While titanium implants have been around for decades with a long track record of success, zirconia implants are very new to the market, so we do not know what their success will be long-term. We want the most successful, most predictable long-term results for our patients, and for these reasons, we do not offer zirconia implants at this time.

Will food get lodged beneath my implant denture(s)?

Yes, any prosthetic in the mouth will get some amount of food beneath it. The great thing about implant dentures is how easy they are to clean. Simply remove them; clean the denture(s), your gums, and implants; and snap them back in.

How long should I take off work to recover after the procedure?

Every patient is different. Some return to work the next day, others wait up to two weeks. Since there is always the chance of swelling and bruising, and you will need to get used to eating and speaking with your new teeth; the more time you can take off, the better.

What is a soft liner?

A soft liner is a cushion we place inside your denture to help it fit and feel better as your mouth heals and changes shape following extractions.

Am I too young for this procedure?

No, this is not just an option for seniors. It’s actually very common for people in their 40s, 30s, even 20s to need teeth replacement. Replacing bad teeth can be extremely beneficial for your overall physical health. Also, having teeth which allow you to confidently smile, laugh, and converse can be very beneficial for your emotional health. Again, needing to replace teeth early in life is not rare.

What items should I have ready for after my procedure?

  • Ice packs
  • Wash cloths you don’t mind throwing away
  • Comfortable clothes you don’t mind throwing away
  • Soft foods such as:
          - soups
          - yogurt
          - cottage cheese
          - smoothies
          - protein shakes
          - eggs
          - mashed potatoes (gravy optional)

Once I have my prosthetic teeth attached, will I know how to use them right away?

Just as you would need practice in order to get used to functioning with a prosthetic leg, it will require some patience and practice to get used to your new replacement teeth. That being said, since they are attached using implants, your dentures will be quite a bit easier to get used to than traditional dentures.

Will I know how to talk with my new teeth right away?

Again, this will take a little time, but with some patience and practice, your mouth and tongue will quickly adjust. S’s will be the toughest to pronounce. Practicing words like “Mississippi” and “sixty six” can help you get used to the new teeth. Sometimes, patients may have a slight long-term lisp with implant dentures.

Will my dentures still rock?

Some patients may experience very slight rocking with their implant dentures. For patients with two lower implants, these will need to be placed in the front of your mouth making it possible for some rocking to happen. A dab of adhesive at the back on each side of the lower denture will usually take care of this.

I can’t stand having the roof of my mouth covered. What are my options?

In this case, your best bet would be the All-On-4 procedure. Not all snap-in dentures can have the palate removed.

Can I remove implant dentures?

Yes. Having removable implant dentures makes cleaning them very easy. Just take them out; clean the denture(s), the gums, and implants; then snap them back in place.

Can implants fail?

While titanium dental implants do have a 95+% success rate, yes, they can still fail. Some of the things that can cause them to fail:

  • failure to integrate into the bone
  • smoking
  • diabetes

If an implant fails within the first year, your dentist will replace it at no charge to you.

What is involved with maintaining implant dentures?

  • Snaps | From time to time you’ll need to change out the snap rings in the implant dentures. These wear and lose retention over time as you take your teeth in and out. They’re quick and affordable to have replaced.
  • Cleanings | Just like with natural teeth, you’ll need to have the implants cleaned periodically. All buildup on your implants will be removed and your dentures will be cleaned.
  • Periodic re-fittings | Your mouth will still change over time, so your dentures may need to be re-fitted to ensure their best performance and make certain that unnecessary stress isn’t being applied to your implants.
  • Home maintenance | This takes just a few minutes a day. Take your dentures out 1-2 times each day and brush them with a denture brush or very soft bristled toothbrush. Also, don’t forget to clean the implants. Scrub these with a very soft dental brush also.

Single Tooth

Implants & Bridges

Will I need an implant for each of my missing teeth?

It depends. As each case is unique, our doctor will need to see you for an exam to determine the best course of treatment for you.

Can I get a temporary crown or bridge on my implant the same day it’s placed?

At this time, we do not place temporary bridges or crowns on implants that have just been placed. This is because we want as little force being placed on the implants as possible while we wait for them to fuse with your jawbone.

How much do dental implants cost?

Am I a candidate for dental implants?

Most patients are good candidates for dental implants, even those who've been told they were not in the past. Call our office to schedule your consultation and let's see what we can do to help.

What kind of after care will I need to perform with my dental implant(s)?

Take care of them like natural teeth:

  • Brush and floss twice a day.
  • Get cleanings regularly at intervals recommended by your dentist.

What do implant teeth look like?

In the mouth, they look almost exactly like a natural tooth. The implant body (the screw) will not be visible in your mouth. It is under the gums in the bone.

Will it function and feel like a natural tooth?

Yes! It will feel different from a natural tooth but will function the same.

How long should I take off work to recover after my procedure?

Most patients are able to return to work either the same day or the next day. Certain cases may require more time off from work.

What is the process for getting a dental implant?

Our process is very straight forward. Your implant is placed into your jawbone and is left alone to fuse for 4-6 months. After this, we take impressions and have your tooth fabricated. If bone grafting is required, this may increase treatment time.

Is my implant removable?

No, once your implant is completed, you will not be able to remove it.

Can I be put to sleep for my procedure?

We do not currently put patients to sleep, we do, however, offer both IV and oral conscious sedation. Click here to learn more about your options. The medicine will help to relax you and typically makes it so you don’t remember the procedure. For this, we write you a prescription, and you can fill it at your local pharmacy. NOTE: You MUST have someone driving you both ways for this procedure, because of the sedation medication. You MUST NOT operate a motor vehicle or any machinery after taking your medication.

How long can I expect to bleed after the procedure?

Most of the bleeding will have stopped before you leave the clinic, however, expect to have a bit of bleeding (oozing) for one to three days after the procedure. Additionally, you will most likely notice increased salivation when we first put your denture(s) in. When this increased saliva mixes with a small amount blood, it can look like a lot of blood. If heavy bleeding continues, please call the office.

An old home remedy which still works really well to encourage clotting and reduce bleeding is the use of tea bags. Just get a regular tea bag, dampen it, squeeze out the extra water, place it on the extraction site (or sites), and the tea will help you heal. Multiple tea bags can be used if needed. Replace the tea bags if they become saturated with blood. The process can be repeated as many times as you need.

Will there be a lot of pain after the surgery?

Though your experience may vary some, most patients can expect some discomfort and possible swelling afterwards. Many patients come in the following day for their follow-up appointment reporting very little discomfort. All patients are prescribed pain medication to help reduce any discomfort.

Is this procedure offered with zirconia (non-metal) implants?

We do not currently provide this type of implant. While titanium implants have been used for decades with a long track record of success, zirconia implants are very new to the market, so we can't be certain what their success will be long-term. We want the most successful, and predictable long-term results for our patients, and for these reasons, we do not use zirconia implants at this time.

Can implants fail?

While titanium dental implants do have a 95+% rate of success, yes, they can still fail. Some of the things that may cause them to fail:

  • Failure to bond to the bone
  • Smoking
  • Diabetes

If an implant fails during the first year, our dentist will replace it at no cost to you.

What are immediate dentures?

As the name implies, immediate dentures are those that are placed immediately after your natural teeth are taken out. These dentures help control swelling and bleeding by acting like bandages over the extraction sites.

What is the process of getting immediate dentures?

The complete process typically takes 6 months, but may take longer for some patients.

  • Impressions will be taken before your procedure with your natural teeth still present. From these impressions, your dentures are fabricated.
  • Procedure – your teeth are extracted and your new teeth are placed.
  • Series of soft liners (soft re-fittings) over 6 month healing period.
  • Final re-fit (processed hard reline) at end of 6 month healing period.

What is it like getting used to immediate dentures?

This experience is different for each patient, but it does require patience and practice. Your mouth will be going through significant changes over the 6 month healing phase. Remember, this will get easier with time and we will be here for you through the entire process.

Some dentures look so fake. Will mine look that way?

Absolutely not. One of the common fears patients have is that their dentures won't look natural and people will know they're dentures. Our highly skilled lab team will make certain you don't end up with "horse teeth" or "chiclets," simply beautiful, natural-looking teeth. No one will know.

How do dentures fit?

Denture fit mostly depends on the anatomy of the person wearing them. Full upper dentures tend to fit rather well, acting like a suction cup against the roof of the mouth. Full bottom dentures tend to feel loose and have an inclination to "float" in your mouth since your tongue and cheeks are constantly working to dislodge them. It is for this reason that we strongly recommend dental implants with lower dentures.

How do I chew with my new dentures?

Cut your food into small pieces, chew small bites, and chew with food on both sides of your mouth to even out your bite.

I can’t taste as much with my dentures. Is this normal?

Yes, the palate of the full top denture covers the taste buds on the roof of the mouth reducing your taste sensitivity.

The lower denture is difficult to function with. Is this common?

Yes, bottom dentures are more difficult to function with than top dentures. The tongue and cheeks moving will push and pull on your bottom denture and dislodge it. Speak with the doctor to see if you’re a candidate for lower implants. They can help tremendously with lower denture fit and function.

My dentures feel like they’re becoming loose?

This is normal with immediate dentures. Your gums and jaws will shrink down after extractions. This leaves space between the gums and dentures. We place soft liners in your dentures to fill in this extra space. This should help your dentures fit and feel better as you heal.

What are denture adjustments and how often are they needed?

New dentures will have certain spots that rub slightly and create sore spots. During the denture adjustment, we will target the spot(s) on your denture that are irritating you, decrease the amount of pressure apply to the gums, and smooth them thoroughly. This is completely normal with all new dentures and one or more adjustments should be expected.

Will I be charged for denture adjustments?

We provide denture adjustments at no charge for the first 6 months after delivery of your final teeth or permanent hard reline. After this time, there is a small fee to adjust your dentures.

How do I take care of my dentures?

  • Clean your dentures daily with antibacterial hand soap and either a denture brush or a very soft bristled tooth brush
  • Store them in water when not wearing them

What should I use to clean the dentures?

  • Either antibacterial hand soap or denture cleaner and either a denture brush or a very soft bristled tooth brush. Scrub them at least once a day
  • Soak them in a denture cleanser (optional)
  • Ultrasonic cleaner

Should I remove my dentures when I sleep?

Yes, we do recommend removing your dentures before sleeping and also whenever possible throughout the day. This gives your gums time to "relax" and get natural, cleansing saliva flow to them. Also, if you naturally grind your teeth, taking your dentures out will help you increase their functional life significantly.

Should I boil the dentures to clean them?

No! Do not boil the dentures to clean them. The heat can warp your dentures. If this happens, you will have to replace them.

Can my dentures get damaged?

Yes, the dentures are made from acrylic teeth and an acrylic base. While these materials are quite strong, they can become damaged. Be careful not to drop them, especially onto hard surfaces such as porcelain sinks, tile floors, etc.

One of the most common ways dentures are damaged beyond repair is when a dog (or sometimes cat) gets ahold of them. Animals and pets enjoy chewing on dentures and can often damage them irreparably very quickly. Be extra careful to put them up where your pet can’t reach them.

If the dentures get damaged, are they repairable?

Yes, in most cases they can. One of the great features of acrylic dentures is the affordability and ease of repair compared to other materials. And in many cases, repairs are be completed the same day.

Can I expect pain after the procedure?

While experiences will vary some, you should expect mild soreness and some swelling after your procedure. Many patients return the following day for their follow-up examination reporting very little soreness. You will be prescribed medication for pain to help reduce any discomfort.

Why am I salivating (drooling) so much?

Excess saliva is perfectly normal when you first have an implant placed in your mouth. Your body senses it as foreign material and is trying to “flush” it out. The increased salivation should decrease within a few days.

Can I be put under for my procedure?

We do not currently put patients to sleep, however, we do provide both oral & IV conscious sedation. Click here to learn more about your options. This medication will provide relaxation and typically makes it so you won't remember the procedure. For this, we write you a prescription, and you can fill it at your local pharmacy. NOTE: You MUST have a driver both ways for your procedure, due to the sedation medication. You MUST NOT operate a motor vehicle or any machinery after taking your medication.

What are full dentures?

Full dentures are dentures that replace all of your natural teeth in either the upper arch, lower arch, or both.

What are partial dentures?

Partial dentures are dentures that replace some of your missing teeth in an arch. They typically attach to the surrounding, natural teeth for stability and support.

What are the advantages of dentures?

  • Enhanced confidence | Great looks and a new smile.
  • Looks | Dentures provide great looks and are easily customized for each individual.
  • Facial support | Dentures help to fill back out areas of the face that have sunken in following tooth loss.
  • Improved nutrition | Better chewing ability leads to better digestion and better nutrition.
  • Affordability | Dentures are the most cost-effective way to replace a full arch (upper or lower) or an entire mouth of teeth.
  • Improved quality of life

What are the differences in your denture levels?

Our dentures offer better wear resistance, enhanced stain resistance, and longer warranties as you go up in levels.

Will I know how to eat with my new teeth right away?

Just as you would need practice in order to get used to walking with a prosthetic leg, it will require some practice and patience to get used to the prosthetic teeth. Practice and patience are the keys to improving with your new dentures as fast as you can.

Will I know how to talk with my prosthetic teeth right away?

Again, this will take a little time, but with some practice and patience, your tongue and mouth will adjust quickly. "S’s" will be the toughest to pronounce. Practicing words like "sarcastic" and "stupendous" can help you get used to your new teeth. In a few cases, patients may have a slight lisp long-term with dentures.

Can food get beneath my dentures(s)?

Yes, any prosthetic in your mouth will get some amount of food under it. The convenient thing about dentures is how easy it is to clean them. Just remove them; clean your gums and the denture(s); and put them back in.

How much time should I take off work for recovery after any extractions?

Usually 4-7 days is enough time to recover. That being said, since there is always a chance of swelling and bruising, and you’ll need to become accustomed to speaking and eating with your dentures, the longer you can take off, the better.

What are soft liners?

A soft liner is a cushion which is placed inside your denture through the healing process. It fills in the spaces that are created as you heal helping your dentures to feel and fit better.

I feel like I’m too young for dentures?

No, this is not only for senior citizens. It’s actually very common for people in their 40s, 30s, even 20s to need to replace their teeth. Replacing bad teeth can be quite beneficial to your overall health, and being able to smile, laugh, and converse confidently with teeth you can be of can benefit your emotional health.

What items should I have ready for after my procedure?

  • ice packs
  • wash cloths you don’t mind throwing away
  • comfortable clothes you don’t mind throwing away
  • soft foods such as:
  • soups
  • yogurt
  • cottage cheese
  • smoothies
  • protein shakes
  • eggs
  • mashed potatoes (gravy optional)

Can I have the palate (middle portion which covers roof of the mouth) removed from my denture?

Most of the palate of the denture needs to stay. Removing this also removes a great deal of security and nearly all of your natural suction. A portion of the palate may be removed for patients who have denture implants.

What are tori? Do they need to be removed?

Tori are bony knots that develop in the mouth of many patients. They are not harmful, however, they can prevent your denture(s) from fitting comfortably, so your doctor will often recommend having them removed.

How long can I expect to bleed after the procedure?

Substantial bleeding will stop before you leave the clinic, however, expect to have slight bleeding (oozing) for a few days after your procedure. Additionally, you will most likely have increased salivation when we first place your temporary teeth. When this increased saliva mixes with a little blood, it can look like a lot of blood. If you experience heavy bleeding, please call the office.

An old home remedy that still works quite well to help clotting and reduce bleeding is to use tea bags. Get a standard tea bag, get it damp, squeeze out the excess water, place it on the extraction site (or sites), and the bags will help you clot. Multiple tea bags can be used if needed. Replace the tea bags if they get saturated with blood. This process can be repeated as many times as you need.

My dentures make my gums sore, can this be improved?

There are multiple reasons that can lead to sore gums: high pressure spots, movement of the denture(s), and just plain old wearing of the dentures.

  • High pressure spots | these are normal with new dentures and typically just require simple adjustments
  • Denture movement | this can rub sores on the gums over time. Securing the dentures with implants can greatly reduce this issue.
  • Wearing dentures | dentures are foreign objects in your body. They can be a wonderful substitution for missing teeth, but they can still aggravate your mouth after a long day. Consider scheduling time to remove your dentures and give your gums a chance to "rest."

 

Will my dentures wobble?

Yes, it is possible. Dental implants often give the stability needed with dentures alone. Click here for more info.

Denture adhesive can also be useful for some patients.

I can’t stand having the roof of my mouth covered. What options do I have?

Dental implants often provide the stability you need. Click here for more info.

Can I remove immediate dentures?

Yes, they are removable. They come in and out of the mouth and are kept secure either through natural suction for the upper or denture adhesive. Not all patients will have natural suction with their top denture for a number of reasons (palatal torus, flat palate, bone loss, etc.)

1530 S Union Ave, Suite 7-8, Tacoma, WA 98405

Hours

Monday
8am - 4:30pm
Tuesday
8am - 4:30pm
Wednesday
8am - 4:30pm
Thursday
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Closed
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