Absolutely Natural

Advanced implant dentistry delivers perfect result.

At 82, Charlotte Pratt had all her natural teeth until one of her upper front incisors broke following a failed root canal. Her dentist at the time offered a solution for replacing the newly missing front tooth, but it was hardly ideal.

Charlotte Pratt treated for a failed root canal and broken front tooth through an implant and crown from Darshan Patel, DMD, at DeLand Implant Dentistry.

Charlotte is thrilled about her new implant and crown.

“He said that because it was my front tooth, he was going to have to grind down four or five of the surrounding teeth and make a bridge,” she recalls. “He told me that would be necessary because front teeth are very difficult to match.

“I had this gut feeling that said, Don’t do this! My other teeth were perfectly fine. Once they were ground down, they would be gone forever.”

Charlotte began looking for an alternative, including a dental implant. Her research, along with recommendations from a friend, led her to DeLand Implant Dentistry.

“I went for an appointment and my goodness, the office couldn’t have been nicer,” shares Charlotte. “It’s a wonderful office, where the father, son and mother all work. They all came in and introduced themselves to me and made me feel very welcomed.”

Charlotte is referring to board-certified dentist Rajiv Patel, BDS, who founded DeLand Implant Dentistry nearly 30 years ago; Rita Patel, patient treatment coordinator; and Darshan Patel, DMD, who followed in his father’s footsteps to become a dentist.

Under the primary care of Dr. Darshan, Charlotte started the treatment to replace her missing tooth with a dental implant.

Unique Challenges Conquered

Dental implants are the gold standard for replacing missing teeth, and at DeLand Implant Dentistry, advanced expertise and equipment make it possible for
Dr. Darshan and Dr. Rajiv to deliver outstanding results.

The dental implant process involves three steps: surgical placement of the implant, which serves as an artificial tooth root anchored in the jawbone; attachment of a post, called an abutment, once the implant is sufficiently healed; and restoration of the tooth with a crown held in place by the abutment.

Although many dentists outsource the implant surgery, Dr. Darshan and Dr. Rajiv are able to complete the entire process.

“We’re a one-stop shop in that we are able to do it all,” notes Dr. Darshan. “That has a lot of advantages because there can be some miscommunication when two practitioners are involved who have different goals, such as when a surgeon is placing the implant and a dentist is doing the restoration.”

Charlotte has an active social life, and she wanted the implant and finished crown to make her smile look exactly like it once did. She didn’t want anyone to notice a before-and-after difference.

Among the challenges was the unique shape of her teeth, along with a slight gum recession. The root of her intact front tooth was partially visible; the effect led to subtle shade variations within the tooth, which the new crown needed to match.

In his planning, Dr. Darshan had Charlotte bring in photographs from before her tooth broke. He also took new photographs that evaluated her lip movements.

“We have very advanced equipment, and we did a CT scan to visualize the anatomy beneath the gums. On the computer, I was able to design the tooth and then the computer system converted the design into a 3-D model of her teeth and mouth.”

Charlotte also has a narrow bone ridge in her underlying gum, which created another challenge. Thanks to special instruments at DeLand Implant Dentistry, Dr. Darshan was able to place the implant through a pinhole incision. The bone was compressed, not cut, a procedure called a ridge expansion.

Once the implant healed, Dr. Darshan went into overdrive to deliver a perfect new crown.

For many patients, Dr. Darshan and Dr. Rajiv make crowns on site in a single visit through a computerized 3-D printing system. Due to Charlotte’s tooth structure and shading, however, Dr. Darshan elected to have a special laboratory fabricate her new crown.

The first two fabrications were sent back before the crown was exactly like he wanted it.

“I’m a perfectionist, and I tell patients that it takes patience to get the best results,” he explains. “I probably get that through my father, who is the same way. If something’s not right to us, we make sure to follow through until it is right.”

Perfection Achieved!

The end result not only satisfied the perfectionist in Dr. Darshan, but also made Charlotte ecstatic.

“If she went into a dental office, I don’t think the assistants or the dentists would notice which tooth was the implant crown. They might think it was her natural tooth, until they take an x-ray” observes Dr. Darshan.

“He did a remarkable job,” raves Charlotte about Dr. Darshan’s work. “He certainly has a lot of education, and it shows. I am really, really delighted.”

Charlotte appreciates how Dr. Darshan made her feel comfortable throughout the entire procedure, especially during placement of the implant and post.

“I am very, very happy, and I recommend DeLand Implant Dentistry to everyone!!”

FHCN article by Susan Hemmingway. Photo by Jordan Pysz. mkb
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    • Deland Implant Dentistry

      Rajiv Patel BDS, MDS, has practiced general dentistry in Deland, Florida for more than 26 years. He strives to deliver the most advanced, personalized, comprehensive and professional dental care to his patients while building relationships b... Read More

    • Rajiv Patel, BDS, MDS

      Rajiv Patel, BDS, MDS, has practiced general dentistry in DeLand for more than 25 years. He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology/Implant Dentistry, and Fellow of the American Academy of Implant Dentistry. With hundreds of h... Read More

    • Darshan Patel, DMD

      Darshan Patel, DMD, earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Florida and a Doctor of Dental Medicine degree at the University of Florida College of Dentistry. He is currently pursuing a fellowship with the American Academy of Impla... Read More