The Dental Implant Practice

Michael Tischler, DDS
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The success of dental implant treatment is directly releated to the surgical, prosthetic, and laboratory team that supports each patient’s case. As with any team, good communication and sound treatment and business principles are behind its success.

Once a clinician, as the leader or owner of a dental practice decides to provide dental implant services, there are multiple steps—educational, protocol, inventory, and more—to put in place. This is the case whether it is a surgical- or prosthetic-based practice. At this point in time, every practicing dentist should have a firm understanding of basic surgical and prosthetic dental implant knowledge. The documented success rate of dental implants mandates that tooth replacement options should prioritize dental implants as the best option to replace missing teeth. Basically, any dentist that is treatment planning a patient’s dental work with long-term success in mind should always include dental implants as one of the options presented, when indicated. From this perspective, every dental practice is an implant-related practice.

Treatment planning is the starting point for all dental implant treatment. A practice with a focus on dental implants should have a business coordinator that orchestrates the financing and follow-up of implant treatment plans that have been presented to the patients.

In practices that focus on the surgical aspects of treatment, a clinical coordinator for implant treatments is advised. They can run the inventory control and instrument and equipment tasks and be a liaison to implant and implant-related manufacturer representatives. Other tasks involve team training and continuing education coordination, as well as radiology report organization, and more. In practices that are focused only on the restorative aspects of dental implants, there are coordination and communication issues with respect to the surgeon and the dental laboratory team. The success of dental implant treatment is directly related to the surgical, prosthetic, and laboratory team that supports each patient case. As with any team, good communication and sound treatment and business principles are behind its success. Ideally, an implant team should share similar practice philosophies based upon sound educational principles. Team attendance at educational venues can be a great resource for shared knowledge.

An important aspect of treating patients with dental implants is to have the support of more experienced dentists in your area to mentor and to offer assistance with any challenges or complications that may arise. This could include an oral surgeon, periodontist, advanced implant dentist and an ENT physician for any sinus complications related to implants and grafting. These relationships should be established through face-to-face meetings.

This month in Implants Today, we have an excellent article by Dr. Anthony Ramirez on CT planning and delivery of a full-arch screw-retained prosthesis. His article points out the many steps taken to deliver an excellent prosthetic outcome.

If you have any questions or comments about this topic, or any other subject presented in Implants Today, feel free to contact Dr. Tischler at mt@tischlerdental.com.

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