Dentistry plays a major role in our lives. This special branch of medicine helps us maintain a healthy oral cavity and flaunt a beautiful smile. Restorative dentistry is a specialty that deals with providing dental restorations to bring back teeth to their original form. Teeth that are broken, cracked, chipped, missing, worn out, weak, etc. can be restored using dental restorations.
Among all the available tooth restorations, some of the most prominent and widely used are dental implants. Implants are restorations that entirely replace an extracted tooth. Implants offer several features that their alternatives do not, making them the go-to solution to replace a missing tooth.
Implants are made from two distinctive components, namely the visible ceramic crown and metal implant stud. They are connected together with the help of an abutment, which holds them intact. The tooth crown is made from dental-grade ceramic, meaning, it can be customized to perfectly mimic the color and contour of the missing tooth. The implant stud, on the other hand, is made from a highly strong metal such as titanium. It is the job of the metal stud to hold the implant restoration strong and stable.
Positives of getting an implant restoration
- Implants are extremely strong and offer similar functionality as that of the natural teeth. They wouldn't break or loosen from their sockets easily.
- Implants can be customized to match the exact appearance of the natural teeth. Anyone who sees them will not have even the faintest doubt that it is a prosthetic.
- The implant stud has screw-like grooves on its surface, allowing it to stay stable and firmly fixed to the jawbone. You can bite and chew food like you used to before losing the tooth.
- Dental implants are highly durable and long-lasting. Since they are made from dental-grade ceramic, they offer excellent durability against wear, cracks or chipping.
- Since implants restore the tooth root as well, they prevent the deterioration of the jawbone by holding it intact. This also prevents a change in the facial shape and further loss of teeth.
Restoring a missing tooth with an implant
Getting an implant would take more than one visit to the dentist's office. During the initial consultation, we will run multiple tests to ensure you are the right candidate for dental implants. Once the candidacy is confirmed, we will prepare you for the implant surgery. Meanwhile, scans and x-rays will be taken to serve as a reference for fabricating the implant stud. This data will be sent to a dental laboratory where the ceramic crown will be fabricated.
During the next consultation, we will clean the teeth and run a health check before progressing on to the surgery. Local anesthesia will be administered to numb the teeth and the surrounding tissues. A small hole will be made on the jawbone where the implant has to be placed. The implant will be placed in the jawbone and secured firmly with the help of adhesives. After placing the implant, a healing period of a few weeks will be recommended by the dentist to allow the implant stud to adhere well to the jawbone.
The next consultation will be reserved to attach the crown to the metal implant stud. This will be done using a connecting element called the abutment and adhesives. After the crown is firmly attached to the stud, we will conduct a bite test. The alignment of the implant can be altered to ensure you get the perfect bite. It may be polished to enhance the appearance.
Schedule an online appointment or call us at (831) 372-7548 to have a consultation with our dentists and we’ll be able to guide you further.