Our Dental Blog

Exclusive content and the latest news from LifeSmiles and Dr. Randy Mitchmore.

What to Expect When You Get Dental Implants

For patients looking for long-lasting, natural-looking tooth restoration, dental implants are the way to go. Dentures and dental bridges are typically less expensive than dental implants, but the security and longevity of implants make them the preferred choice for patients who can afford the cost and the time involved. Dental implants are safe and are the most like real teeth compared to any other restoration approach. 

Dental Implant Procedure

If you want a quality dental implant, you will not be in, out, and finished in a single day. Getting dental implants requires at least one surgical procedure along with some periods of healing spread out over time, all of which can take anywhere from six weeks to several months for optimum results. The basic steps include:

  1. Tooth extraction and bone graft—We remove any remaining parts of the tooth or tooth root. Then, we apply a bone graft to create a solid base for the implant. In a minority of cases, the natural bone is healthy and substantial enough for us to place the implant at the same appointment, but for most people, 2-6 months of healing time is required between the tooth extraction/bone graft and the placement of the implant. 
  2. Dental implant placement—At your next appointment (after the extraction site and bone graft have healed and strengthened), we will place the implant into the jawbone. 
  3. Osseointegration—The bone around the implant will need 2-6 months to grow tight around the dental implant in a process called osseointegration. This full integration of the dental implant with the bone is what makes dental implants so strong and effective. 
  4. Artificial tooth application—Although, in some cases, we can apply the artificial tooth at the same time as placing the dental implant, in most cases, the artificial restoration will not be applied until after osseointegration. Once the dental implant is strong enough, you will come back into the office, and we will place a customized artificial tooth (also called a restoration or a crown), over the implant.

What You Will Feel

Some discomfort may occur, similar to getting a tooth pulled after each surgical appointment, however the procedures themselves are all painless. Your mouth will be numb, and at LifeSmiles, we can even provide IV sedation when it makes sense for certain patients. 

After your gums have healed from the dental implant, we will take impressions of your teeth to create a natural-looking replacement for your missing tooth or teeth. This process is painless, and you should experience no discomfort afterward. But it may be hard to patiently wait for your restoration to be finished and ready to apply. The anticipation of what the restoration will be like can be a challenge, but patients are usually very excited and satisfied once the restoration has been successfully applied. 

Risks and Expectations

The dental implant process takes a few months to complete, so you may be given temporary crowns, dentures, or bridges to use during the healing process if the situation warrants it. Some patients may experience mild bleeding after the procedures. Mild aches or discomfort is normal. You will probably be given antibiotics as a precaution to prevent infection, but infections are very rare with dental implants. A full review of your medical history will be performed to make sure you do not have any conditions that would complicate the dental implant process. 

The vast majority (98%) of dental implants are successful. The replacement tooth will require the same kinds of home care as your natural teeth (e.g., brushing, flossing) to keep the gums healthy, but the implant will not decay over time. You will have a strong, permanent artificial tooth that will stick with you for the long haul. Their reliability and durability are why implants have become the standard of care for tooth restoration. The process may take a long time, but patients can enjoy a much more natural appearance and functionality with implants compared to dentures or bridges. 

Dental Implant Expertise

Talk to us today about your tooth restoration to see if dental implants are right for you. Dr. Randy Mitchmore has the expertise to ensure you experience a smooth transition from tooth extraction to restoration placement. We are here for you whenever you need us, so schedule an appointment today.


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Sally May-Frankum
Dental Hygienist

Sally’s favorite part about working with the team at LifeSmiles is the fun she has with her co-workers. Additionally, she appreciates working with Dr. Randy Mitchmore because much like her, he values whole-body health for his patients. She’s proud to be part of a team that does such high quality work.

Outside of the office: Sally enjoys being with her children and grandchildren and uses writing as a creative outlet. On the weekends, she can be found doing all things outdoors including hiking and biking.


Bucket List: Going to Europe, exploring every US state, and zip-lining.

Hero: The Highest Power of them all!

Toni Wilson
Queen of Charisma

 “Every great dream begins with a dreamer.”

Toni’s favorite thing about working at LifeSmiles is the beautiful scenery. When patients are having anxiety about their dental appointments, she creates a fearless atmosphere with her charisma and warmth. She is passionate about helping every patient achieve their dental health goals. She says she truly loves being part of a team where she can grow professionally and personally.

Outside the office: Toni loves spending time with her husband and their sons. She also likes to show off her green thumb with her work in her garden.

Bucket list item:
Travel around the world and learn about other cultures and regions.

Your hero: Harriet Tubman because she was passionate and a fearless leader unafraid of any of life’s challenges.

Mike Mireles
Elite Care and Education Specialist

Smiling is contagious

Mike began his career at LifeSmiles seeking an opportunity to expand his skillset and advance his career. Today he works at Dr. Michmore’s side through dental procedures and surgeries. He loves working at LifeSmiles because the entire team is continually learning and keeping up to date with the newest advancements in dentistry.

Outside the office: Mike enjoys barbecuing on his patio, traveling, and spending time with his family. He’s a dog dad of two: Tati and Tito.

Bucket list item:
To visit Thailand and Dubai and to try skydiving!

Your hero: Mike looks up to his parents and is forever grateful for the life lesson they taught him; respect, manners, strength, and to be a go-getter. He continues to carry these things with him with everything he does.

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Sandra Smith

Sandra is 44 years old and is a star athlete for the Special Olympics. At LifeSmiles, Sandra stocks patient rooms and the coffee bar. She does all kinds of special projects like decorating for holidays and preparing awesome gifts for our patients.

Sandra loves being around all her friends and is proud to wear a LifeSmiles shirt, jacket, and name badge. You’ll always find her smiling and helping make our patients smile too.

Outside the Office: Sandra likes to go fishing with her family, swim, go to dances, and walk the mall with her friends. She is very active in the Special Olympics and won second place in the state volleyball tournament (go, Sandra!) in 2020. She sings in her church choir and attends international performances with them.

Spirit Animal: Butterfly. She likes them because they are pretty.

Andie Willis
Director of Details

Andie is married with one son, Logan and now lives in The Woodlands. She grew up in Sugar Land and has followed in her mother’s footsteps – she has been in dentistry for over 35 years. Andie actually started out working in the office with her mom and learned many things from the way she worked.

Andie has been a Lead Dental Assistant for most of her career. She has worked for many specialists including oral surgeons and periodontists. She has extensive training in all facets of dentistry but especially enjoys the surgical and cosmetic side. As a science nerd, dentistry fascinates Andie and gives her a sense of accomplishment.

At LifeSmiles, she is our “Director of Details”. Andie is known for being a perfectionist because she likes to gather as much information as possible and go the extra mile to match Dr. Mitchmore’s high standards. She truly loves being part of our dedicated team of professionals who go above and beyond for our amazing patients.

Outside of the Office: Andie is addicted to Lagree fitness and loves to go off-shore fishing.

Your Hero: Her Mom. She is the most selfless person Andie knows.

John Copous
Chief Enthusiasm Officer

John became a new patient of LifeSmiles in 2008. He likes to tell people he was not allowed to leave. John worked down the street for 14 years before joining the team. He has a passion for meeting new people and extending genuine hospitality.

Often the first person people meet on the phone and when they walk in the door, you can count on John for a warm welcoming smile. You can even ‘hear’ it over the phone. He says, “I believe everyone deserves the red carpet treatment and love seeing other people smile.”

John hears stories every day how someone’s smile is holding them back. He can barely contain his excitement when shouting the praises of Dr. Mitchmore and the entire team. He shares passionate stories of how the transformations people have received at LifeSmiles, changed their lives.

Outside the Office: John loves being outside. He enjoys sharing a beach house with friends and family. He loves entertaining, throwing a party and cooking at home. He can start a conversation with anyone, anywhere. He’s an amateur stand-up comic.

Bucket List Item: To live in a foreign country for one year, somewhere near the beach. Take some time to write an epic love novel loosely based on my large Italian family.

Your Hero: “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”. While fictional, the character incorporates admirable qualities from real life people. She believes in the goodness of everyone, keeps on going and moves forward despite any obstacle. She is able to find humor in other people’s quirks, accepts them and makes sense of it all. Plus, she’s a little outrageous too.