When your dental implants are placed, we will place a dental crown on top of the implants right away, if possible. This may be just a single tooth replacement or it may be a denture with multiple teeth if you are having multiple teeth replaced. If we can place a temporary restoration on top of your implant that day, it will be as if you got your replacement tooth in just one visit, though you will still have to come back to check on the healing of your implant and have the temporary restoration replaced with a permanent one.
But sometimes your dental implant isn’t able to support a temporary restoration right away. Does this mean you have to go without a tooth? No. There are actually several options available that can make your smile look complete while your dental implants are healing.
The most traditional option is a partial denture. This combination of plastic gums and artificial teeth is normally supported by hooks and clasps in your mouth. This has the advantage of being quick and inexpensive to make, but it may not be secure, may be uncomfortable, and the clasps can cause wear on your natural teeth. It can even lead to unpredictable pressure on your healing implant.
This looks something like an Invisalign tray with a false tooth sitting in the spot where your implant is. It’s a hard, clear plastic tray that fits over your teeth and holds the artificial tooth in place while healing occurs. Because it’s supported by your teeth, it’s less likely you’ll get pressure on your implant. But it can affect your speech, and you have to remove it when sleeping or eating to avoid damaging it.
Another potential option is a temporary dental bridge that can be bonded to your neighboring teeth. This can give you a comfortable, attractive, fixed replacement that is fully functional. The problem is that temporary bridges have the potential to damage the teeth they are bonded to.
During your consultation, we will talk to you about your options and help you understand that, if at all possible, you will not leave our office with a gap in your teeth. We will also talk about how these choices can impact the final appearance of your dental implant.