Single Tooth Replacement With an Implant
A dental implant is a permanent root replacement solution for the patient who is missing one or more teeth. The implant can serve as an anchor for a single crown, for a dental bridge or for a complete set of dentures. At Prosthodontics of Princeton the dental implant is a good option for the patient in need of a single tooth replacement.
Once the implant has been placed, it can take up to four months for the bone in the jaw to fuse with the titanium implant. This fusion to the bone is called osseointegration. Once osseointegrated, the implant is stable and ready to receive the crown.
Missing Teeth Replacements
The dental implant serves as a permanent root replacement for the lost tooth. A natural tooth consists of a root and a crown. The dental crown is the part of the natural tooth that is visible, and is supported by the root. The dental implant replaces the root, while the prosthetic crown replaces the natural dental crown.
When a natural tooth is lost without replacement, it can lead to a number of concerns with bone loss and shifting teeth. Having an implant placed will often be the best restorative solution. The dental implant is surgically placed into the jaw in preparation for the prosthetic crown to be attached. Advances in dental technology make it possible to create prosthetic teeth supported by implants that look and function just like natural teeth.
Candidates for Dental Implants
The majority of patients who are missing a single tooth are good candidates for getting a dental implant. Those who are smokers or take some prescription medications may not be suitable candidates. Smoking can delay healing which can make it more likely that the bone fusing to the implant is not successful.
The ideal candidate for dental implants will be in good overall health, with good oral health that includes sufficient bone structure. A bone graft may be necessary for those who do not have sufficient bone structure to support the dental implant.
Timeline for Single Tooth Replacement
Patients who do not need to have a bone graft should get their dental implant placed as soon as possible. Delaying the procedure can lead to bone regression and the likelihood of needing a bone graft in the future.
Those who are in need of a bone graft will need to wait for a minimum of three months for the process to be successful. Our Dentists at Prosthodontics of Princeton will work with your Surgeon and evaluate your progress at checkups. Once there is sufficient bone, the titanium post can be surgically implanted into the gum. Sometimes a temporary crown will be placed while the process of osseointegration begins. Once the bone has fused to the implant, you will be able to get your permanent crown placed.
From start to finish, patients can expect the timeline to last between four to eight months. The results will be well worth the wait.
Concerns With Delaying Tooth Replacement
Each of the teeth in your mouth provides support for neighboring teeth and for the bone in your jaw. Without the bite force keeping the bone healthy, it will begin to regress. Bone regression can lead to some signs of premature aging while also making it possible for other healthy teeth to begin to shift into the space vacated by the unhealthy or extracted tooth. Replacing a missing tooth is an important part of ensuring your ongoing dental wellness.
Schedule your consultation for tooth replacement with Prosthodontics of Princeton. Call (609) 924-1975 to book an appointment that will work with your schedule.