Understanding the Function and Purpose of Cosmetic Implants
There have been drastic improvements in both the science and the techniques behind cosmetic dentistry. Replacing a missing tooth with an artificial one requires the orthodontist to have technical skills while at the same time having an artistic eye that allows them to help their patient maintain the aesthetics of their teeth.
What Is the Purpose of Cosmetic Dental Implants?
Cosmetic dental implants are designed to have the same functionality as well as appearance of a person’s natural teeth. During the procedure, an implant is secured to the jawbone. Once the procedure is complete, the part of the implant secured to the jawbone is invisible. Its purpose is to securely hold crowns, bridgework, and dentures. In most cases, cosmetic dental implants are made of titanium. The benefits of titanium include strength, lightweight, and it is a biocompatible metal. Biocompatible means that the body will not reject the implant.
How Do Cosmetic Dental Implants Work?
Cosmetic dental implants work because of a process called osseointegration. This basically means that a joining or fusion takes place between the titanium rods inserted in the jawbone and the bone itself. This process is important because when a person loses their tooth, they also lose the bone that once supported the tooth. In addition to serving as a support for the lost tooth, the cosmetic dental implant also provides stability to the jawbone. It allows it to maintain its original shape and density.
Cosmetic dental implants are functional in that they allow an individual to smile, talk, and chew food like they normally would. Their functionality includes the effect that they have on the psychological well-being of a person.
One of the first questions an individual asks after hearing about cosmetic dental implants is: “Am I a good candidate for cosmetic implants?”
In most cases, any individual who has lost a tooth is a good candidate for cosmetic dental implants. However, the healthier the candidate is, the higher chance they have of the procedure going smoothly. Patients battling uncontrolled diabetes, who are dealing with cancer, who have had radiation procedures in the jaw, who are currently smokers, abuse alcohol, or have extreme periodontal disease may not qualify for this procedure.
Single Tooth Replacement
In patients who are looking to have one tooth replaced, a dental implant is installed in their jawbone. An abutment is later attached to the implant and then the tooth or crown is attached in the mouth. Once the cosmetic implant is in place, it is virtually indistinguishable from a person’s natural teeth.
Multiple Tooth Replacement
With this procedure, multiple dental implants will be inserted in the jaw. During the healing process, temporary healing caps may be installed. Once the healing process is complete, permanent abutments are then attached to the implant. Next, custom crowns or a custom bridge will be cemented or screwed into the abutments.
Implants are designed to require the same form of maintenance that a person’s natural teeth would require. This means that it is important to perform daily oral hygiene such as brushing and flossing your teeth. Regular checkups will allow dentists to check the integrity of the tooth’s osseointegration.