Skip to main content

Dental Implants

How do I know if I qualify for dental implant bone grafting?

By Bone Grafting, Dental Implant Mistakes, Dental Implants, Prosthodontist

I’ve had eight teeth missing for over 20 years. I’ve decided to get dental implants, but I think that I will need bone grafting. I know that not everyone qualifies for it. What is the criteria? Keith C. from Beachwood, OH

Keith – If you are generally in good health, it’s likely that you will be able to receive bone grafting. This is an area where Dr. LaVacca is quite experienced, and sometimes he is able to do the grating despite certain health issues. He thoroughly reviews the medical history of his patients and makes the determination. You will be able to find a qualified implant dentist to make the determination for you.

Implant dentistry is not a recognized specialty, so check the credentials of dentists to verify that they have extensive training and certification in implant placement. Verify that he or she has membership with implant associations that are well respected, such as the International Congress of Oral Implantologists. Without the adequate training and experience, serious implant mistakes can occur.

You can review Dr. LaVacca’s credentials on his Naperville prosthodontist web page to get an idea of what you should look for in a dentist who is qualified to do your bone grafting and dental implants.

This blog post is sponsored by implant dentist Dr. Anthony LaVacca of Naprville.

Are dentures my only option?

By Dental Implant Mistakes, Dental Implants, Dentures

I am proud to say that I am a recovered drug addict, but my habit ruined a lot of teeth. They cannot be saved. I’m a 27 yr old man with lots of rotten teeth. Every time I had an interview I could see people looking at my teeth. Someone finally gave me a chance and now I make good money the honest way. It still bothers me because I know that my social life is affected by it too. I have the money to do something about the way I look now. Who wants dentures at 27? Please tell me my options. Thanks. Mike from Detroit.

Mike – Congratulations on your recovery. What an accomplishment!

It’s understandable that you don’t want dentures at 27 years of age. Dentures are one option for replacing teeth, and they are certainly preferred to being without any teeth, which affects your ability to eat and maintain your health.

When you can afford an alternative, dental implants are the best choice, and they are a permanent option. An implant has the same structure as a natural tooth. There is a titanium root form that is surgically embedded in your jawbone. When the jawbone heals, a replacement tooth or crown is placed on the root form.

The crown can have the same color and look of a natural tooth, if it’s done by an artistic cosmetic dentist who has been specifically trained in the techniques required to give you a beautiful smile.

When the work is completed, the implants will have the same look, feel and function of natural teeth. Your damaged teeth will be replaced with a beautiful smile. You and others won’t be able that they are not your natural teeth.

But not every dentist can give you successful and long-lasting implants. Check the credentials of the dentist to ensure that he or she has extensive training in and experience with dental implants. Otherwise, there are some costly and physically painful mistakes that can occur. Implant mistakes can even lead to needing completely new implants.

Read about the training and experience of implant dentist Dr. Anthony LaVacca in Naperville. You’ll have a good idea of what to look for to get a beautiful smile makeover. Best wishes and congratulations again on the new you.

This blog post is sponsored by Naperville implant dentist Dr. Anthony LaVacca.

Teeth don’t line up after dental implant bridge

By Dental Implant Bridge, Dental Implant Mistakes, Dental Implants

My teeth are mis-aligned. The left top and bottom teeth don’t match when I bite down. It seems that the left top teeth are way too far left from where they should meet the bottom teeth, if that makes sense. My teeth weren’t always like this though. I noticed the problem after I received a dental implant bridge to replace some missing teeth. I am thinking that this is a big problem. Your thoughts?  Thanks much. – Bridgette P. from Kansas

Bridgette – Your teeth should be aligned. It’s possible that the dental implants were incorrectly restored or incorrectly placed. This problem and various types of implant failure can occur if there is miscommunication between your restorative dentist and the surgeon who places the implants. The restorative dentist needs sufficient knowledge of implant surgery to give the surgeon precise instructions on where the implants should be placed. He or she should make a guide that will snap into your mouth to indicate the exact placement and angle of the implants.

Dental implant treatment is not a recognized specialty, so a dentist can claim to be an implant dentist without having received the extra training required to properly place implants.

Dr. Anthony is a prosthodontist who has received specialized training in tooth replacement and restoration. He performs the entire implant process—both the surgery and the tooth restoration. This prevents miscommunication that leads to implant mistakes.

This blog is sponsored by Naperville implant dentist Dr. Anthony LaVacca.

Dentures make me gag

By Dental Implants

I recently had to get dentures because of some teeth that needed to be pulled. I am having such a hard time wearing it because it makes me gag. Can you help me?

Emily B.-Arkansas


Occasionally denture wearers complain about gagging, especially if the plate has to cross their palate. My recommendation is to get dental implants instead. With dental implants, a titanium post is surgically placed into your jawbone to serve as your tooth root, and a crown is placed on top to serve as your tooth. It is an ideal solution for replacing missing teeth, and is the closest you can come to having your own teeth back. There is no gagging, because nothing will cross your palate.

There is an additional benefit too, of preserving your jawbone. Your dentist may have already warned you, but when you have a tooth removed, your body begins reabsorbing the minerals from your jawbone. So, while your denture may last, your jawbone won’t. Placing an implant into the jawbone signals to your body that your tooth is still there and it retains the bone.

Hope this helps.

This blog is brought to you by Naperville Dentist Dr. Anthony LaVacca.

How can I fix my really crooked smile ?

By Dental Implants

I am 35 years old and I have been living with a complicated situation on the upper right section of my smile for almost 20 years now. I have a decaying infant canine which never came out because of the adult canine growing in. The adult grew in the wrong place and never displaced the babyone.

My adult canine #11 grew in over the top of bicuspids #12. Also, I’m told that  #13  is too far away from where it belongs and is too complicated in its root structure to be moved with traditional braces.  # 11 is partially obscuring the two bicuspids behind it and creating a triangular inner area which is difficult to keep clean. It also happens to  be very unattractive.  My general dentist isn’t even sure what kind of decay might be going on up in there, but so far it doesn’t hurt or have an odor so I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

The whole area needs some serious work, but I’m not sure what the best option is. Do I extract the canines and get braces to widen the space where the baby was, so that a full-sized canine implant can be put in?   Or do I extract the canines and get a bridge?   Or… can something else be done with a smaller implant + veneers, or something to create the illusion of normal teeth ?   Please send me some input…I want to start figuring out which road I need to go down to try and fix this finally.

– Rhonda in Pebble Beach


#12 (your first bicuspid) can be made to look like a canine from the front, so if your canine can’t be moved, I’d consider that option, too, after having the permanent and baby canines extracted. Or one dental implant could work – replacing the baby canine with a permanent canine implant. I wouldn’t do the bridge to replace the canine because your bone will shrink in that position over time if you do that and it will be hard to keep it looking natural. But it’s really tough for me to say without seeing you, seeing the x-rays, and doing a clinical examination. You sound like you have a very interesting case–I’d love to have had you come in my door and be given the opportunity to solve it. 

But if you don’t choose my services,  keep in mind that I recommend that you not ask a  general dentist to do this.  My recommendation – find an excellent cosmetic dentist and trust his or her judgment. 


Dr. Lavacca 



How long do I need to wait before I can get an implant?

By Dental Implants

I was told by my dentist and the endodontist that one of my molars will need to be removed since it is decayed below the gumline and can not be saved. I’d like to get an implant once the molar is removed. How long do I need to wait to do this?


I’m glad you are considering a dental implant to replace your missing tooth. However, make sure that all the infection is gone and the socket has had time to heal before moving forward with this dental implant procedure.

Be patient during the implant process, because you will want to be sure the implant has had enough time to integrate with the bone. Placing the false tooth on the implant too soon could cause risk to the procedure. We recommend that patients usually wait several weeks. During this time you should wear a what is called a flipper. Flippers are merely a basic resin tooth mounted on pink acrylic. This will work well to temporarily hold the space until your implant has healed and it is safe to place the false tooth on the implant.

Some important information to be made aware of is when a tooth is removed, the adjacent teeth have a natural tendency to tip into the open space, which also leads to the opposing tooth to super-erupt into the open space. Our teeth were designed to naturally move this way so that they consistently touch their neighboring teeth and so that all of your teeth meet when you bite. This movement among your teeth can cause serious symptoms. Many people suffer from chronic headaches, bite discrepancies, and TMJ disorder. If treatment for these symptoms is prolonged, it could become very costly in the end.

Read more about dental implants and TMJ on our Naperville Dental Specialists website.

What do you know about dental implants?

By Dental Implants No Comments

Dental implants are one of the most natural, permanent ways to replace missing teeth, but implants are not for everyone. You are a potential implant candidate if you:

  • Are in good general health, and able to tolerate the surgery to implant the root form into the bone of the jaw.
  • Have enough viable bone at the implant site to support the root form, or be a candidate for a bone graft.
  • Are NOT on the drug Fosamax or some other forms of oral bisphosphonate. Dental work during Fosamax may exacerbate a serious condition called osteonecrosis of the jaw.

Only a highly trained and skilled prosthodontist like Dr. LaVacca can help you decide if dental implants are the best choice for you. If you a missing tooth or teeth, visit Dr. LaVacca’s Naperville dentist website to make an appointment today.

Close Menu