Single tooth dental implants are an efficient, sturdy solution to some of the most common issues in cosmetic dentistry. If you currently have a missing tooth or need to have a tooth fully extracted due to significant decay, your dentist may suggest you have a single tooth prosthetic implanted to complete your smile. Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about this common implant and why it’s such a good choice for so many dental cosmetic patients.
What Are Single Tooth Implants?
Dentists perform single tooth implants when there’s one tooth missing and the surrounding teeth are all healthy and cosmetically acceptable to the patient. For example, if you severely damage only one tooth in an accident, your cosmetic dentist can perform an implant procedure to provide you with a realistic replacement which leaves your other teeth undisturbed and healthy. The procedure allows you to maintain your natural smile after tooth extractions resulting from oral health issues such as severe tooth decay.
Single tooth implants consist of two main parts: an implant and a crown. The implant consists of a titanium screw which is carefully inserted into the jawbone and the crown installs on top of the implant to create a realistic finish. Dental crowns are often made of durable materials such as porcelain which accurately recreate the look, density, and feel of natural teeth.
When the full implant procedure is complete, the implant is invisible and the crown is fully visible in line with the rest of your teeth. Your teeth will look just the same as they did before, especially if you take care to choose the best cosmetic dentist in Atlanta to perform the implant procedure.
How Do Single Tooth Implants Work?
The process begins with an initial consultation with an implant dentist to assess the situation and discuss the procedure. If the tooth to be replaced is still in the patient’s mouth, the dentist may also use this initial appointment to take an impression or 3D digital image of the tooth so the crown can be designed as an exact match. If the tooth is missing entirely at this point in the process, crown design professionals can look at old X-rays and surrounding teeth to create an attractive, realistic replacement.
After the initial prep work is complete, the single-tooth implantation process is carried out over a series of appointments. The first step involves placement of the implant screw into the jaw. During this initial procedure, the dentist installs a temporary replacement tooth which fills in the gap and covers the implant as it heals. Healing can take several months to complete as the jawbone restores and fills in around the titanium implant forming a permanent bond that mimics the way our natural teeth root into the jaw.
When the implant is fully integrated into the jaw and the dentist gives the patient the all clear, the crown is installed. From this point forward, the patient can treat the single tooth dental implant as they would any of their natural teeth. Regular oral hygiene upkeep such as brushing, flossing, and routine dental checkups will keep the crown and implant healthy and attractive for years to come.
Advantages of Single Tooth Dental Implants
Single tooth implants were developed as an alternative to other dental prosthetic options including bridges. Bridges use the surrounding teeth to anchor the prosthetic into place while the single tooth implant has no impact on the surrounding teeth, bridge installation requires perfectly healthy surrounding teeth to be ground down in order to accommodate the multi-tooth prosthetic piece. The bridge prosthetic style can be preferable for some patients, but for most, the single tooth implant is a much better option.
That’s because single tooth implants are effectively permanent - they rival natural teeth for durability and sturdiness. Once the titanium implant post is implanted and the osseointegration healing process is complete, you have a permanent foundation for a crown to grip onto. Plus, any remaining decay in the jawbone resulting from extracted decaying teeth will be removed, which isn’t always the case with crowns.
If an accident occurs and the crown of your single tooth implant falls off, you’ll have a single gap that can be quickly filled in with a new crown. This is much less dramatic outcome than losing all or part of a bridge, which will reveal both the gap from the missing tooth and the ground-down surrounding teeth.
Overall, single tooth implants require fewer changes to your teeth, and they’re more permanent than currently available alternatives. Single tooth implants are also quite easy to care for, and they can even be better for your jaw health thanks to the removal of decaying material during the implantation process.
Benefits of Replacing an Old Implant
Dental prosthetic technology is always advancing, and if you already have a single tooth replacement implanted several years ago, you might want to see a dentist to assess the health and quality of the existing implant. Recent advancements in this area of cosmetic dentistry have allowed implants and crowns to take on an impressive natural look. Any patients who are unsatisfied with their current single tooth implant should get in touch with their local dentist to discuss upgrade and replacement options.
Finding Your Midtown Dentist for Single Tooth Replacement
Whether you have an old implant that needs an upgrade or you need to have a new single tooth prosthetic designed and implanted, your Midtown Atlanta dentist is here to give you the service and support you need. Drs. Drescher & Cohen D.D.S. can put you at ease from the moment you take a seat in their exam chair. With experienced cosmetic implant dentists at your side at every step, you’ll feel confident and secure knowing your single tooth replacement implant is being performed by some of the best professionals in the business.