725 S 51st. West Des Moines, IA 50265 ?(515) 224 1618

Single & Multiple Tooth Implants

What are Dental Implants?

If you’ve lost a tooth due to decay or an accident, dental implants provide a long lasting and seamless replacement option. Implants are a versatile and long-term solution for patients.

Dental implants made from titanium or ceramic are manufactured to the shape and size of a natural tooth root. Titanium is typically used for dental implants due to its durability, strength, and most importantly, its ability to fuse with the bone over time. Ceramic implants made of zirconia have also proven to be a very reliable option so, if you prefer a metal-free option, please ask Dr. Brad about a ceramic implant option.

Osseointegration is the process of bone fusing to the implant’s surface. We carefully choose our implants based on the latest technology for this process. Anyone can make an implant strong and durable, but only the best manufacturers are continuing to develop surfaces to best bond with bone. The bone cells attach themselves and bond to the implant during this initial time of healing.


Dental implants have three parts:

1) The implant: A titanium or ceramic screw that serves as a root for your new teeth. This is what permanently attaches to the bone in your jaw.

2) The abutment: A permanent, but removable by our doctors, device that connects the titanium or ceramic implant to your new tooth.

3) The crown (or prosthetic tooth): This is the part of the tooth that you see and use. It’s usually made of zirconium or porcelain for durability and amazing looks.

Introducing Ceramic Implants: The Holistic Alternative

While traditional titanium implants have been the trusted choice for many years, recent advancements in dental technology have introduced a holistic alternative: ceramic implants. Made of biocompatible zirconia, ceramic implants offer a metal-free option for those seeking a more natural look and feel for their dental restorations.

Ceramic implants not only blend seamlessly with the natural color of your teeth, but they also provide exceptional strength and durability. They’re a great choice for individuals with metal sensitivities or those who simply prefer a holistic approach to dental care. Curious about the benefits and suitability of ceramic implants for your dental needs? Learn more about our ceramic implant offerings here.

The Benefits of Dental Implants over Bridgework

  • Implants are the closest replacement to the look and feel of your natural teeth.
  • Implants stimulate bone growth.
  • Implants are reliable and have a 95% or higher success rate
  • Implants will last a lifetime, whereas bridgework often needs to be replaced every 10-15 years.
  • Implants won’t compromise the surrounding teeth
  • Implants will not decay, fracture or be prone to gum disease
  • Implants allow you to eat all of the foods that you would with natural teeth
  • Implants may also improve appearance, speech, self-esteem, and be life-changing.

Dental Implants and Bone Grafting

Before placing any implants, we will take a full series of CT scans with our 3D CBCT machine. This will allow us to determine the amount of the existing bone, and the location of the nerves, blood vessels, and sinuses. where the nerves, blood vessels, and sinuses are. Since implants are placed into the bone, we need to know what we are working with beforehand!

If there isn’t enough bone available, Dr. Brad will determine the best course of action. He may choose a different implant size or location, or develop a plan for adding bone grafting material to the implant site. Bone grafting material is a biocompatible mineralized, freeze dried bone. This is packed into the site, covered with a membrane to promote proper healing, and left to heal and transform into newly grown bone. The body is amazing! Dr Brad may also have to add bone near the sinus area, creating enough bone for the implant to be placed safely. This process is called a sinus augmentation.

Dental Implant Surgery

After the CBCT images are taken, and Dr. Brad has developed a plan, the surgery will begin. The surgery can be done with IV sedation, with nitrous, or with local anesthesia. Your dental implants are inserted into the jaw during this procedure. Once the surgical implant is placed, there is a healing collar that is placed on top. This allows the body to heal around the implant for 3-4 months without any pressure or forces from normal activities.


Dental Implant Crown

Once the healing is finished, a device called an abutment will screw into the implant. This is what the final crown will be placed on. Dr. Brad and his team will take a digital impression of the implant and abutment, and have the final crown manufactured. This ensures a perfect fit on top of the implant. Within a few days the crown will arrive and Dr. Brad will place it on the implant.


Dental Implant Success Rate

The success rate of these implants is over 95%. Yes, there are times when the bone doesn’t cooperate or things don’t go according to plan. Having one doctor be in charge of both the surgery and the placement of the final crown is crucial. Dr. Brad will always have the final product in mind while placing the implant. He knows the importance of the whole picture, not just the surgery, or the restorative. He will always make sure his implants are in the right places, at the right angles to function correctly and not compromise the integrity of the final tooth.

Dr. Brad Richtsmeier and Apex Dental, located in West Des Moines, IA, have been providing dental implant services since 2010. He and his team place implants every day and have the expertise to deal with every scenario. If a dental implant isn’t the best course of action, Dr. Brad will find a viable alternative.



Single Tooth Implants

A single tooth implant can be the ideal solution for a missing tooth. It can provide several benefits over alternative restorative options.

By replacing one single tooth and avoiding the traditional bridge, the adjacent teeth don’t need to be altered. A single implant easily provides patients with a beautiful, healthy, and confident smile!

Multiple Tooth Implants

If you are missing more than one tooth, there are several options available. You can replace each tooth one at a time or you can create an implant supported bridge. This uses two implants, and creates a bridge between them. This is much more convenient than a partial denture, and less damaging to your remaining teeth than a traditional bridge.

Next Steps

Step One – Consultation and initial planning.

Call us to schedule your Implant Consultation. The initial consultation will cover:
– What are your chief complaints and concerns?
– What are your goals and preferences?
– A review of your dental and medical history
– A comprehensive dental exam and full 3D CBCT imaging.

We will develop a custom treatment plan with options. We will review it with you and help you choose the best option to meet your goals.

Step Two (if needed) – Removing the tooth

Remove the decayed or broken tooth and place bone grafting material to promote proper healing. This allows your body to flush the decay and bacteria, and allow for full healing before placing the implant.

Step Three – Placing the implant

The implants are placed into the exact location, as planned using your 3D CBCT imaging.

Step Four – Healing and Digital Scans

After the appropriate healing time (usually 3 months), we will take the appropriate digital scans to allow us to fabricate the prosthetic tooth.

Step Five – Placing the final tooth/teeth

After a few days, the prosthetic tooth/teeth will arrive and be ready for placement. We will test fit, ensure proper alignment, and then attach it to the implant via the abutment. Finally, we will teach you how to properly care for your beautiful new teeth!

We'd love to hear from you! Please give us a call at  (515) 224 1618 or complete the form below to message us or request an appointment.

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