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Dental Implants Can Give You Your Smile Back

Closeup of flawless smileDo you have missing teeth? Just one missing tooth can throw your entire mouth out of alignment, setting a course that can lead to even more tooth loss. For many people, dental implants now offer the best solution for restoring missing teeth, and we can help you get them right here at Exceptional Dentistry.

Dr. Carroll working on dental patient

Dental Implant Placement

If your bone density is sufficient and your mouth is in good health, dental implants might be the best solution for your missing teeth. Dr. Patrick Carroll or Dr. Deborah Shoemaker will assess your gums, remaining teeth, current dental work, x-rays, and your medical history before recommending dental implants. If they believe implants would suit your oral health and enhance your life, they’ll coordinate the entire case as your general dentist.

Our doctors will then refer you to one of Louisville's best oral surgeons. In a brief surgery, the specialist will place a small titanium post (or posts) into your jawbone to replace your lost tooth’s root. The jawbone tissue will fuse naturally to the post and create a solid foundation to support your prosthetic teeth.

After a 4-6 month healing period, you’ll return to Exceptional Dentistry to have your final restorations placed.

Model of fixed bridge restoration

Implant-Retained Crowns & Bridges

If you are replacing a single tooth, we’ll attach an all-porcelain crown to the implant using a connector called an abutment. Dental porcelain is one of the strongest materials we use, plus it can be sculpted to perfectly mimic a natural tooth’s shape, size, color, and even feel. Plus, since it is held in place under the gums just like a real tooth, it will blend perfectly with the rest of your smile. The only person who will know it’s an implant will be you!

For a row of missing teeth, dental implants can also be used to support a bridge. Two implant-retained crowns will be placed on either side of the gap in your smile, and these will be attached to prosthetic teeth that literally “bridge” the gap between them. Compared to traditional bridges, implant-retained bridges last much longer, are much more stable, and provide a better looking result. Also, none of your healthy teeth will have to be modified to hold the supporting crowns, meaning more of your natural smile can be preserved.

Model of dental implant retained denture

Implant-Retained Prosthetics

Do you have dentures that slip, pop, or click all the time? Do they irritate your gums and just look unnatural? If so, dental implants can help. They can be used to support a set of dentures that will both look and feel great, and your only regret will be that you didn’t get them sooner!

After placing a few implants into your mouth, these can be used to support a partial or full denture. As you can imagine, thanks to the titanium posts, these dentures will fit much more securely than traditional ones. Also, since your jawbone will be supported from the inside, it will retain its shape and thickness for years to come. This will not only make your face appear younger and fuller, but it will also curtail the soft tissue changes that can make dentures completely lose their fit after just a few years. Even better, thanks to an implant-denture’s strength, patients will have a much stronger bite force, meaning they’ll be able to eat a wide variety of healthy foods with relative ease.

Animation of All-on-4 implant denture


This method is fantastic for patients who need a full denture. Often, patients who have been missing teeth for many years don’t have the jawbone strength to support dental implants, but thanks to this approach, now even more people can benefit from them. It uses just 4 implants to support an entire row of teeth, and in many cases, the implants can be placed and restored in the same day, making it one of the fastest ways to rebuild an entire smile.

Learn More about All-on-4

Across the world, more and more people are using dental implants to replace their missing teeth because they are simply the best. They provide the most security, the most natural appearance, and they can easily last for 30 years or more. If you currently have gaps in your smile that you wish weren’t there, dental implants are your answer. If you’re interested in getting them, be sure to contact our office today to get started.