A person’s first impressions is always their last impression and smiling without a tooth can be embarrassing. Having healthy teeth are an essential part of life.
Patients may lose or have missing teeth for an abundance of reasons. They can be caused by congenital defects, unfortunate accidents, trauma, dental caries, severe gum disease, or their teeth may just wear down with age. These days having a missing tooth is an embarrassing problem which may leave a patient self-conscious and too embarrassed to even smile or talk.
Luckily advancements in dental implant technology make it possible to fit an absent tooth with a dental implant that looks so natural patients might even forget that they ever lost one.
SINGLE TOOTH IMPLANTS
SINGLE TOOTH DENTAL IMPLANTS are the most common dental implant procedures in the US today.In the past the traditional method for replacing a missing tooth involved placing a bridge that is anchored onto adjacent teeth. The drawback is that this requires grinding down those two other teeth so that the bridge can be placed onto them.
Nowadays a more sensible and effective way is the single tooth implant which can replace a missing tooth without it damaging the neighboring teeth. The other method of placing a bridge appears outdated now compared to a dental implant that acts as a full replacement.
There are a number of issues solved at once using this process:
- There is no need to grind down adjacent healthy teeth
- The placing of an implant encourages bone growth around the titanium root
- The crown can be placed onto the implant that looks and functions like a regular tooth
This has proven to be a safe and permanent solution for a missing tooth with the single tooth implant being placed directly into the bone. It acts as an anchor and becomes rigid as the process of osseo-integration ( bone becoming fused to titanium) takes place. It eventually behaves as a root onto which the ceramic crown can be placed. Once the this last step has been done it will look and feel just like a natural tooth.
Your single-tooth replacement will begin by ascertaining the need for replacement with an examination. It may also include an X-ray or CT scan to make sure that you have enough remaining bone to anchor the implant and to determine exactly where the implant should be located.The placement of the implant is a two-stage process. In the first stage, a small pilot hole will first be drilled in the bone where your tooth was. It will then be carefully widened to allow placement of a titanium implant that looks like a small screw. This screw will stay there for 2-6 months to give it time to bond with the bone, creating a secure anchor.
During this process, called osseo-integration, you will wear a temporary replacement crown. In addition to covering the unattractive screw, this also helps it to heal faster and provides a model tooth for the gum to shape itself around.After the osseo-integration process is complete, a new ceramic crown will be created to precisely fit the gap. It will be attached using a small metal post called an abutment. After a brief adjustment period, this new crown will feel so natural that you may forget you ever lost a tooth.
In addition to this normal two-stage process, it may also be possible to do a one-stage procedure that puts the entire replacement tooth in at once using an implant with a pre-attached extension piece. The viability of this varies based on the exact situation, so it will depend on the results of ’ initial examination.
THE RECOVERY PROCESS
The discomfort after the implantation procedure is relatively minimal. You may experience some swelling which is normally confined to the jaw and there may be minor bruising. You will be prescribed pain medications to help for the first few days. Your diet will be confined to soft food only for the first week. After the replacement, the patient’s commitment to good oral hygiene is paramount to ensure the longevity and health of the dental implant.
WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT FROM A SINGLE TOOTH DENTAL IMPLANT
After your single-tooth replacement you can expect to smile naturally, chew naturally and speak naturally as well as having renewed confidence. These natural results will both look and feel like you never lost a tooth in the first place.
THE BENEFITS OF A SINGLE TOOTH DENTAL IMPLANT
A single-tooth dental implant provides better results than a bridge.With dental implants there is no need to grind down perfectly good adjacent teeth. Dental implants preserve the bone in the jaw. (Without the implant there is risk of resorption.It is easier to clean and maintain than a bridge. With a bridge when gum recession occurs the metal base can become exposed and the cement holding it can wash out hence bacteria can enter and affect neighboring teeth.Single tooth dental implants are designed for life - they cannot get cavities and do not require the extra care that a bridge does.