Replacing a Single Tooth with a Dental Implant
If you have lost a tooth due to an accident, cavity or from periodontal disease, that one tooth can be replaced using a dental implant.
A dental implant is an excellent way of replacing a single tooth without the disadvantages of a fixed bridge or removable dentures. It is the ideal treatment for a missing tooth because it does not affect your adjacent teeth. That means no grinding or crowning of your natural teeth for bridges, and no clasps for removable partial dentures.
Your teeth stimulate the surrounding bone with each bite. This preserves the integrity of the bone. When a tooth is lost, the bone is not stimulated and begins to shrink away. A dental implant keeps this bone intact and can prevent both bone loss and gum tissue shrinkage. In addition, because a dental implant replaces the root structure, the jawbone is better preserved. A dental implant is also much easier to clean as compared to a bridge and unlike a bridge, an implant cannot be affected by cavities.
A dental implant looks and functions like a natural tooth, while having several advantages over other types of tooth replacement. If you are missing a single tooth, a dental implant is the most natural looking way to replace it.
The key with dental implants is having enough bone in which to place them. If the bone is deficient, there are techniques to grow additional bone to ensure proper positioning of the dental implant. Dental implants are typically placed in a single appointment, but require a period of osseointegration. Osseointegration is the process by which the dental implant and the bone become fused. This process usually takes between 3 and 6 months to anchor and heal. After this time, we can proceed with the placement of the custom made crown. During the healing phase, there are different techniques that can be used if going without a tooth is a concern. Be sure to talk with Dr. Britt and Dr. Forestier about these options.