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Dental Implants

Joseph S Kim, DDS -  - General Dentist

Joseph S Kim, DDS

General Dentist & Family Dentist located in Seabright, Santa Cruz, CA & Mission District, San Francisco, CA

If you’re missing one or more permanent teeth, it’s important to meet with a qualified dentist. Over time, missing teeth may increase your risk of tooth decay, gum recession, and bone loss. Joseph S. Kim, DDS, with offices within Santa Cruz, Mission District in San Francisco, and Fremont, California, regularly restore his patients’ smiles using dental implants. To learn more about this state-of-the-art treatment option, make an appointment by calling the office nearest you or clicking the online booking tool today.

Dental Implants Q & A

What are dental implants?

Dental implants are a type of restoration used to replace missing permanent teeth. Unlike traditional prosthetics that rely on your other teeth for support, Dr. Kim surgically places dental implants into the sockets of your missing teeth.

After placing an implant, you return home for a period of three to four months to heal. Over time, your bone grows around the implant, fusing it to your jawbone. Once your mouth heals, you return to the office of Joseph S. Kim, DDS, and receive a restoration that sits on top of your implant. Depending on your individual needs, this might be a crown, bridge, or denture supported by implants.

Nothing can replace the strength and durability of your natural, permanent teeth, but dental implants come pretty close. In fact, with proper care and good dental hygiene, dental implants can last a lifetime. 

What are the advantages of dental implants?

Dental implants provide a number of benefits. In addition to restoring the shape and aesthetic appearance of your smile, dental implants: 

  • Boost your self-esteem
  • Make eating easier
  • Make speaking easier
  • Are more comfortable than dentures

Dental implants also improve your oral health. Dr. Kim doesn’t have to reshape them or remove any enamel on adjacent teeth, as is common with bridges, to prepare your implant. As a result, you’re less likely to experience cavities, damage to your tooth enamel, or gum disease. 

What is the process of receiving dental implants?

Receiving dental implants usually takes a period of 3-12 months and a series of appointments. However, if you don’t have healthy gums or enough jawbone to support your implants, you might also need a bone graft or sinus lift before you can receive your implants.

During a bone graft procedure, Dr. Kim takes healthy bone from another area of your body, or he uses a synthetic bone material and implants it in your jawbone. After performing your bone graft procedure, you return home for a few months and allow your jaw to heal. As your jaw heals, the graft creates new, healthy bone tissue. New bone tissue increases your jaw bone’s strength and makes placing implants both safe and easy. 

During your initial consultation, Dr. Kim does an oral exam and asks you about your goals for treatment. He also takes a series of 3D images of your teeth, jaws, and smile using a cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) system. These scans provide Dr. Kim with volumetric data on your jawbones and teeth. After gathering this information, Dr. Kim develops an implant treatment plan. 

Prior to implant surgery, Dr. Kim administers a local anesthetic numbing your tooth roots and gums. After the anesthesia sets in, Dr. Kim places an implant in the sockets of your missing teeth––one for each tooth. Dr. Kim specializes in precise implant surgery, minimizing pain and complications.

Following surgery, Dr. Kim sends you home with a list of recovery instructions and a prescription. Several months later, after your gums heal, you return to the office, and Dr. Kim places your custom-milled abutments, which attach the implant to its restoration, such as a same-day CEREC® crown. When finished, your smile is in near-original condition.

Dr. Kim only uses premium quality dental implants and materials. He also offers dental implant restorations on their own, so if you crack or chip one of your crowns, he can quickly and safely replace it. 

To learn more about receiving dental implants, make an appointment with Joseph S. Kim, DDS––call the office nearest you or click the online booking tool today.