Single Tooth Implant
Believe it or not, about 120 million people in the United States are missing at least one tooth. Luckily, there have never been more effective and beautiful replacement options thanks to advances in restorative materials, techniques, and technology. One of our most popular options at SmileCOS Dentistry involves the placement of a dental implant, which we then attach to a prosthetic tooth.
What Is a Dental Implant?
A dental implant is a small screw, typically made from titanium, which mimics the root element of a missing tooth. During a brief healing period, the implant screw and your jawbone fuse together, forming a powerful bond capable of supporting a restoration. This fusion process between the implant and your bone is known as osseointegration.
An implant-supported restoration usually consists of three components: the screw, the abutment, and the prosthesis. The abutment is a support structure made from either titanium or ceramic, which links the screw to your restoration. A single implant screw is used to support a dental crown, while a series of implants can be used for a fixed bridge or even a full-arch appliance.
The Dental Implant Process
As with any restorative dentistry, the single tooth implant process begins with a consultation exam. During your exam, Andrew Miller, DDS will use advanced diagnostic tools to determine if an implant is right for you. Once we determine you are a suitable candidate, we can schedule your procedure.
The single tooth implant procedure is generally broken up into a few appointments. During your first appointment, we will place the implant screw underneath the gum tissue and into the jawbone.
Once the implant is in place, we must wait until the healing process, and osseointegration is complete. This can take anywhere from six months to a year. After the implant fully fuses to your bone, we can schedule your second appointment.
During this appointment, we will check the status of your implant and take an impression of the area. We may also give you a temporary crown to restore function and protect the implant while we fabricate your final restoration. Over the next couple of weeks, our laboratory technicians will use the impression to fabricate your ceramic crown.
At a final appointment, Andrew Miller, DDS will remove the temporary, and check the margins of your new implant-supported crown. Before we permanently attach your crown to the abutment, we must ensure a perfect fit.
In some cases, we can also place your implant and crown during the same appointment. This is possible thanks to our CEREC system, which involves the use of computer-aided design and manufacturing.
The Benefits of Dental Implants
Dental implants have become the industry standard over the last few decades due to their many benefits. Above all else, your single tooth implant will look, feel, and function just like a natural one. Because the implant becomes a part of your bone, you should experience superior durability, security, and comfort while eating and speaking.
Dental implants are also more convenient. In other words, your single tooth implant will not require any specialized care. You should be able to brush and floss your restoration as you would your natural teeth. With the proper care and maintenance, an implant can last decades, even a lifetime.
Many patients choose implant treatment for cosmetic reasons, as well. Most implant-supported restoration will be fabricated using porcelain, zirconia, or some other ceramic compound. Ceramic materials can be shaped, textured, and polished to match the appearance of natural enamel, resulting in an esthetically-pleasing crown.
Finally, dental implants are the only tooth replacement that helps prevent bone deterioration. Besides keeping your remaining teeth from shifting out of position, the implant screw stimulates the bone as a tooth root would, keeping your jaw healthy and strong.
Schedule Your Initial Consultation
You, too, could experience the wonderful benefits of dental implants! Call (719) 394-3304 to schedule your initial consultation now!