There is never any shame in asking questions, but sometimes, when you're under pressure, the right questions just don't come to mind. This is often the case when you are in the dentist's office hearing that you need a dental implant. You may not think of these questions until later. Luckily, you'll find the answers below.
Why can't you just get a bridge?
Dental bridges were the standard tooth replacement option for many years, and they are not quite obsolete. However, implants have a few advantages over bridges. They are independent and they don't pull on your other teeth like a bridge. Implants also help keep your jaw bone in good shape since they put pressure on the jaw bone like a natural tooth root. To put it more concisely, you could just get a bridge, but an implant is almost always a better choice.
Will insurance cover your dental implant?
You'll need to call your dental insurance company and ask. Until recently, many dental insurance companies considered dental implants to be cosmetic in nature, and as such, they did not cover the cost of implants. Thankfully, that is changing. Many insurance plans do now cover the cost of implants, but some are still a bit behind the curve in this regard. If your insurance plan doesn't cover the cost of implants, your dentist may offer a payment plan.
Will you be awake when the implant is put into your jaw?
The short answer is yes. But don't worry — it's not nearly as bad as you're picturing. The dentist will typically give you a heavy sedative, so while you'll be awake, you'll be pretty groggy and out of it. You'll also be given a local anesthetic, so you won't feel anything while the dentist is performing the procedure. The whole thing should take less than an hour.
Will people be able to tell you have an implanted tooth?
No! Dental implants are intentionally made to look just like real teeth. Nobody will know you have an implant unless you make a point of telling them. Additionally, you won't even realize you have an implant once your gums are healed. You will brush and eat with the implant like normal.
Hopefully, these are the questions you would have asked your dentist had you thought of them. Now that you know the answers, you can move forward with confidence and have the implants put in place.