A permanent dental implant can help individuals repair gaps in their smiles that are the result of missing teeth. According to Reuters, over three million people in the United States have these implants, and the number of installations is growing each year. The natural look and function of implanted teeth can improve smiles and make speaking and chewing simpler than using removable dentures. If you are considering the use of an implant to replace a damaged or missing tooth, understanding the construction process of the crown may increase feelings of confidence when it comes to using these artificial teeth.
The dental implant process
When teeth are lost or damaged beyond saving, dentists may recommend dental implants for patients who do not want the resulting gap to change their appearance. These artificial teeth can be placed almost anywhere in the mouth and are commonly used in locations where a missing tooth is highly visible. During the procedure, dentists replace the roots of missing teeth with metal screws and other hardware, which are set into the jawbone. Once the jawbone heals around the implant, the artificial teeth are snapped in and cemented into place. The creation of these implants is both interesting and complex, from the initial casting to the final finishing touches.
Dental implant materials
While dental implants are not a new technology, the posts and screws of today’s artificial teeth are usually made of titanium or titanium alloy, which has several benefits for many patients when compared to materials used in the past. Not only is titanium long-lasting, but it can also prevent some possible oral issues:
- Allergic reaction
Because every patient is different, dentists perform a complete oral exam for those who want implants and may take medical history into account to ensure genetic allergies are not an issue. In addition to the metal portion of an implant, the crown of the tooth is usually made of ceramic or porcelain material.
Dental implant crown construction
While temporary crowns are typically created in dental offices and clinics, those that are part of an implant usually are made in a dental laboratory. Technicians generally use porcelain in favor of ceramic crowns because the material is sturdier and not as prone to damage. These labs often work with a variety of dental clinics and have the technology to create many different types of implant crowns. Because the size, shape and color of each artificial tooth are different, the labs must adjust the construction of the implant’s crown every time one is created. Many practitioners who offer dental implants work closely with the laboratories to ensure every individual patient receives a crown that matches the surrounding teeth.
Each uniquely constructed crown is a vital component of the individual appearance and functionality of the dental implant. Understanding how the crowns work in tandem with the metal roots and the adjoining abutments, as well as how they are made, may help you make an informed choice when it comes to deciding how to replace missing or damaged teeth.
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