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In some of the past blogs, we looked at what a dental implant is (“Dental Implants…A Great Solution for a Missing Tooth” posted on October 9th, 2011) and when they are indicated to fill in gaps in the mouth (“Planning for a Dental Implant,” posted on January 21st, 2013.)
We also came to realize that they are the number one choice to replace a missing tooth, as opposed to other options that are available (“Options to replace a missing tooth,” posted on October 2nd, 2011.)
Now that we have a good general understanding of a Dental Implant, I thought it would be a good time to look into the nuts and bolts of how they work and what better way than to look at an actual case.
This is a case which I felt would help to visually explain the actual hardware that is involved with a dental implant.
We will look at them in three steps:
Please keep in mind, placing the implants was accomplished with just having the patient receive routine freezing (numbing).
Image # 1: After the implants are placed into the bone, they are left undisturbed for 6 months.
The part of the implant that is placed into the jaw bone is made of titanium.
In the 6 months that the implant is ‘resting’ in the bone, it forms an irreversible bond with the bone that it is encased in: this is the part of the implant that replaces the root of the tooth.
The little round metal coverings that you see in this image are called ‘healing caps.’ They are placed over the top of the root portion of the implant to identify where the implants have been placed in the bone. In addition, the healing caps help to shape the gum where the actual crown will be.
Image # 2: It has been 6 months and now that the implants are nicely settled into the bone it is time to build up the teeth.
We build onto the ‘root’ portion of the implant by adding these metallic pieces called Implant Abutments…these get screwed into the implants that are embedded in the bone.
These structures hold onto the crowns that you see in your mouth.
Image # 3: In this image, one can see the actual crowns that have been cemented onto the ‘abutments.’
The patient’s esthetics and function, has now been restored.
Interested in finding out whether dental implants are right for you? Call us at (905) 71-3867 today to learn more.