Dental Implant Temporary Tooth

If you’re missing one or more teeth and have been researching your options for replacement teeth, you’ve probably read or heard about dental implants. One of the most popular dental restorations available, dental implants continue to increase in popularity, versatility, and success, and one of the things that ensures this success is the effective, thorough healing of the dental implant site after the implant fixture has been surgically placed into the jawbone, which can take several months. This might make you wonder what your smile will look like if you move on from a dental bridge or removable prosthetic to dental implants and have to wait while your implants heal, but you can take comfort in the fact that there are multiple options for temporary teeth that patients can wear while their dental implants heal. Rushing the healing process isn’t an option. In order to understand the importance of a successful healing process for dental implant surgeries, it’s helpful to understand what a dental implant treatment involves, including why dental implants are considered by many to be the gold standard option for replacing missing teeth.

Dental implant restorations are natural-looking and comfortable, functioning like natural, healthy teeth while precisely matching their appearance in shape, color, and luster. These lifelike characteristics arise because of the design and function of the dental implant. When a healthy tooth is present, its root contains blood vessels and nerves, and when the tooth is subjected to the natural forces of biting and chewing, these blood vessels are stimulated. This helps keep the tooth healthy and strong. In turn, the root of the tooth stimulates the bone that supports it, exercising the bone tissue and keeping it healthy. When a tooth falls out or is removed and there is no root present to stimulate the bone, the bone begins to atrophy and is reabsorbed into the body, where it is conserved for use in other areas. A dental implant functions in much the same way as a tooth root, relying on the support of the bone while helping keep it healthy and strong, but in order for this functional relationship to form, the bone must heal thoroughly and completely around the dental implant. As it heals, the bone will fuse to the implant post, creating a permanent bond.

Dental implant fixtures are made of highly non-reactive, biocompatible material, usually titanium. Titanium has been used in medical applications for decades, thanks to its osteophilic nature. When a substance is osteophilic, that means that it has an affinity for bone and can be expected to fuse with bone permanently as the bone heals around an implant made of that material. As the bone heals, it fuses with the dental implant, in a process called osseointegration, which can take anywhere from several weeks to several months. Aftercare following implant placement is integral to the success of any dental implant, and maintenance is also an important contributor to the longevity of dental implants; all things considered, however, with the proper care, it’s not uncommon for dental implants to last a lifetime. For many, the longer healing time is a small price to pay for a lifetime of comfortable eating and speaking and confident smiles.

Ask your dentist about the temporary tooth options available to you if you’re discussing dental implant treatment. If you’re replacing a tooth toward the back of your mouth, away from the “aesthetic zone” that is visible when you smile and talk, your dentist might not recommend a temporary tooth. Since no one can see the area, there’s no cosmetic reason for a temporary tooth, and since you aren’t supposed to use that area of your teeth for chewing as your dental implants heal, it can actually be counterproductive to use a temporary tooth for dental implants in these locations. If you’re missing a tooth in your aesthetic zone, however, you’ll have multiple temporary tooth options.

When a single front tooth will be replaced with an implant and a dental crown, your dentist might provide a flipper denture, also known as a removable partial denture. These acrylic prosthetic teeth are held in the mouth by a molded base, much like a retainer, that fixes the prosthetic tooth in place. Another option for a single missing tooth is the Essix retainer, which uses clear polyurethane fitted over the natural teeth to hold a prosthetic tooth in position, and which is one of the more affordable options for temporary tooth replacement, though not one of the more durable. If sufficient natural teeth are present and the bone is in good shape, a temporary bridge can be used to replace missing teeth as dental implants heal, and, in some dental implant treatments, temporary healing crowns might even be used. These healing crowns can restore the appearance of the teeth during healing but shouldn’t be subjected to the forces of biting or chewing, which can adversely affect healing and compromise the dental implants. though it’s important to take special care of these crowns during healing. If you’re getting multiple implants and use a removable denture, it’s likely that you’ll be able to continue to use your denture as your implant heals, but only your dentist can tell you for sure.

Upper False Teeth Options

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