Post your comments about dental implants to our blog. Read the dental implant survey press release.
In this poll, we finally asked a question many of you have requested we cover in one of our surveys: Do you place your own dental implants?
The general dentists in our poll were split on the issue. Fifty-three percent of the general dentists in our poll responded, “Yes, I place my own implants.” The remaining 47% replied, “No, I refer patients to a specialist.”
Not surprisingly, specialists had a very different profile than general dentists. Four out of five specialists in our poll place dental implants. Those who do not place implants include endodontists and pediatric dentists.
In this survey, geographical location did not seem particularly correlated with placement of implants.
On the other hand, gender was highly correlated with placement of dental implants. One is tempted to making sweeping generalizations ("Men are more likely to be specialists" or "Women are better at knowing their own limitations"), but one should not jump to conclusions!
Our sample size of female dentists was small. In fact, every female dentist who responded to our survey was a general dentist. The fact that female specialists were not represented in this poll may help explain these results.
Everyone Love the Simple Cases
- “Yes, I place implants myself, but only in ideal situations.” (Florida general dentist)
- “I pick and choose. Those patients who need a more complex treatment are referred to our in-house oral surgeon or periodontists.” (Virginia prosthodontist)
- “I offer implants. It depends on the complexity of the case; some are sent to a specialist.” (Florida general dentist)
Placing Implants Is Not for Everybody
- “I have neither the experience nor knowledge of anatomy that would allow me to feel comfortable placing implants.” (North Carolina general dentist)
- “Like they say: if you try to be a jack of all trades, you will be a master of none. I am fortunate to have one of the best implant specialists in the entire country in my backyard. I never have to worry about improper or sloppy placement like I get from other ‘professionals.'”(Florida general dentist)
Who Wants In on the Action?
- “After referring to specialists for the last few years and getting back poor work (acentric, too facially inclined, off the center of the ridge, non-ossiointegrated), I thought: How much worse can I do? Now I offer implants. For practice doing sinus lifts I’ll get a couple of sheep or pig heads.” (Georgia general dentist)
- “I refer implant patients to a specialist, but I am seriously considering placing them in some of the more straightforward cases.” (California general dentist)
- “Went to training in January and February. Started placing implants right away. Using Nobel Biocare system and it works great! Patients love that we can do the whole process from beginning to end.” (Minnesota general dentist)
- “I’m taking a course in implantology, so soon I will offer them myself.” (General dentist, Greece)
Restorations Are Another Matter
- “I restore implants and I refer placements out.” (Massachusetts general dentist)
- “I restore but do not place implants.” (Tennessee prosthodontist)
- “I have a specialist come to my office. I do the restorative portion myself.” (New York general dentist)
General Dentists Do Good Work with Implants
- “Every general dentist who can extract a tooth can do most implant surgeries. I feel that Oral Surgeons really do not want you to know how easy it is to do. All dentists owe it to themselves and to their patients. I restore 75% more implants now because I am placing my own. The acceptance was astonishing.” (Oregon general dentist)
- “I’ve been placing implants since 1984. Did internship in implants at Midwest Implant Institute completing in 1986. I have only ever lost one dental implant due to implant non-integration.” (Michigan general dentist)
- “Most implants are well within the abilities of GP’s… The expertise comes in knowing which ones to refer out.” (Virginia general dentist)
Fostering Healthy Relationships between General Dentists and Specialists
- “We do the prosthetic portion of the process, we do not do the surgical placement of the implant.” (New Hampshire general dentist)
- “I use mini-implants in office where and when I’m able. I refer out traditional implants.” (Pennsylvania general dentist)