YOU’RE NOT ALONE

We wanted to do a series on “the things you should know about dental implants and the All-On-4 procedure before you have it done.  This blog post is very important because too many times shame is what keeps people from smiling. What do I mean by that? Well, personally, my teeth have been my greatest insecurity throughout my life.  Some men talk about losing their hair, for others it’s being too skinny or too overweight, but for me, it was always my teeth. Some dentists can see that as a selling tool, to use guilt and shame to get you to sign on the dotted line. This makes me incredible angry. Many who share the shame of having decay or lost teeth want to isolate, not smile or even avoid eating in front of others. A smile is a very powerful thing. Did you know that 70 percent of adults ages 35 to 44 are missing one or more permanent teeth?  7 out of 10 adults, that’s a pretty big number. This is exactly why there’s so much hype around dental implants and why so many doctors are jumping on board. In the past 10 years, dental implant procedures have increased over 63%. It also helps that the average dental implant has a 97 percent success rate. Those are pretty good odds for surgery and the results can be life changing.  Unfortunately, I’ve fallen in that three percent failure category twice, hence why I’ve doing this documentary to help you guys not have to go through some of the challenges that I have.

Friends let me be straight with you, 120 million Americans have lost one or more teeth, 12 million Americans have lost all their teeth. Look at those numbers, you are not alone!  Of the 12 million dental implant procedures completed out there, one-third of them are done by general dentists.  Can a general dentist do them? Yes, they can do them, but can they do them well? That’s the million-dollar question. I personally, would never consider getting a dental implant with a general dentist. Why? There’s a big difference between specialists, including experience, time and education. A periodontist is a restorative specialist and has more education than a general surgeon but they are not an oral surgeon. A prosthodontist is one step further, and can be both surgical and restorative. While a general dentist has not received any further education.  Now you may ask, what makes them qualified to do dental implants? Well, not much really. With dental implants, we have discussed how important it is for your bite to line up after you receive even one dental implant. One can have the same bite resistance as you can with your natural tooth. In fact, that’s why we talk about zirconia dental implants so often. With zirconia, you typically have a harder bite, then with your natural teeth. What does this mean? Well, if your teeth are not well- aligned, over time you could wear down the bottom row very quickly.  There are about half a million dental implants done per year. An alternative to implants as you may well know are dental crowns. Did you know dental crowns are only successful 50 to 60 percent of the time?  I’m living proof of this. If the success rate is so low, why do dentists do them? Let’s talk about endodontics.  You may have been referred to an endodontist for a root canal. This type of specialist tries to “save the tooth” by providing you with a lovely root canal, which could cause other added issues, but I digress. Then after that, they slap a crown on it. But wait a second, didn’t we just hear half of all crowns fail, so how does this make sense? If the crown fails, now we’ve you’ve got a root canal that might fail as well, it could even abscess later and then you got to go to an implant anyways. So, now, you’ve just doubled your cost, your time and your pain.  Listen, I know, traditionally the rules are: “do everything you can to save the teeth, and don’t get rid of them if you can avoid it!”  Me personally, I’m one man’s opinion, but I avoid root canals at all costs and go straight to implants.  In addition to their success rate, over 80 percent of implants out there have lasted the entire life of the patient. That’s incredible! I don’t sell dental implants nor am I a dentist. But, I am a patient and a living walking testimonial on what has worked and what hasn’t. That’s why I am sharing with you. And you should share your story too, don’t be ashamed! We have an entire community here at the Smile Mentor, of those that are in the same boat. Our community consist of both patients and well-vetted doctors that can help you to not feel alone, ashamed or scared as you’re going through this journey. Take some time to watch some of our videos on YouTube. Or get involved on our website. Thank you so much for reading and have a great day.

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