Dental implants have been in use for decades as the most durable, effective, and natural tooth restoration method that today’s dentistry has to offer. The treatment is known to bring patients many benefits, including restoring your smile and chewing ability, preventing jawbone loss and further tooth loss, allowing easy eating and cleaning, as well as boosting your confidence and contentment in life. If you are considering getting dental implants, it is important that you learn about the treatment thoroughly to know what to expect from it. Understanding that, this post from Sydney Dental is made to cover dental implant parts. So read on and find out right now with us!

dental implant parts

1. How many parts are there in a dental implant?

dental implant

A typical dental implant comprises three main components, that is an implant post, an abutment, and a tooth restoration.

1.1. The implant post

The implant post is a screw-like cylinder that is placed into the jawbone to play as an alternative tooth root. As this fixture is made to function like a natural tooth root, it tapers towards the end like one. Implant posts are usually made of titanium to be biocompatible with the mouth tissues. Sometimes the post is coated with hydroxyapatite to facilitate osseointegration – the process when the implant post gets fused with the jawbone. 

Dental implant posts come in a wide array of sizes, depending on the types and impressions of your teeth. For example, an implant with a small diameter is suitable for smaller teeth like incisors and the one of a larger diameter is more of a good fit for bigger teeth, such as molars.

Generally speaking, implant posts can be up to 18 mm in length. There are also mini implant posts available on the market, with longer posts for more stability and strength. Conventional posts are usually designed hollow to have an abutment screwed on top. 

The three-component implant enables the implant posts to be covered during osseointegration. Therefore, a prosthesis is not required to be attached immediately after the dental implant surgery. The next component to be placed is an abutment while a prosthesis is fabricated in the dental lab.

dental implant parts
dental implant parts

1.2. The abutment

As the implant post itself is located under the gumline, it needs a connecting piece to bind it to the top prosthesis. This connector is known as an abutment, which is a stumpy screw which extends above your gum line to hold the tooth restoration. The abutment can be made of titanium or other tooth-colored material. The abutment can be a separate piece from the implant post or sometimes integrated as a single unit.

Typically, a separate abutment will only be attached until osseointegration is complete. The reason is the implant post needs a certain amount of time to be anchored into the body to become a stable base before anything can be attached onto it. In some cases, the abutment can be placed on the same day of the implant surgery. Abutment attachment is an outpatient mini surgical procedure. The oral surgeon will first numb your jaw up using local anesthesia to ensure you will feel painless throughout the surgery. 

1.3. The prosthesis

If the titanium implant post is used to replace the tooth root, acting as a strong base, a prosthesis serves as the visible part of a tooth. The prosthesis, or the tooth restoration can be a dental crown, bridge, or denture.

The tooth restoration is fabricated in the lab based on the impressions of your teeth and jaw for it to look and function like original teeth. This means not only are the new teeth strong but they also look very natural to the eyes of others.

At the appointment, the prosthesis is attached onto the abutment as the last step of the dental implant treatment. You can at this point walk out of the dental clinic with a brand new beautiful smile and a surge of confidence. 

2. How many types of dental implant prostheses are there?

There are three main types of dental prostheses that can be bound on top of dental implants. These are:

Dental crowns

A dental crown is a cap used to coat the exterior of a tooth. It is of the same size and color of an original tooth. Crowns are suitable as the prosthesis for a single-tooth implant or multiple of them that are separate from one another in the mouth.

For attaching a crown, the damaged tooth needs to be removed first if it is still present. Then, an implant post is inserted into the bone, followed by the abutment placement.

Right after the implant surgery, a temporary dental crown is placed onto the abutment. After the implant has completely fused with the jawbone, a permanent dental crown will be added. This crown is made in the lab based on the impressions of your teeth and jaw from your initial consultation for a natural look and similar functionality to your natural teeth.

Dental bridges

Different from a crown that is a single cap attached to the implant post, a dental bridge consists of two dental crowns on both ends and a fake tooth or several teeth in between. These bridges are thus used as the restoration for a row of consecutive decayed, damaged, or missing teeth.

When bridges are used with implants, they are also referred to as implant-supported bridges. This option means dental implants provide support for crowns and artificial teeth when original ones fail to do so. The surgery for adding an implant-supported bridge is similar to that of a crown. The difference is two implants are placed at both sides of the bridge to secure the two crowns rather than a single implant post to hold a dental crown. 

dental implant parts
dental implant parts

Dentures

Dentures are fake teeth and gums made to restore an entire arch of teeth that have been severely damaged, decayed, or missing. Dentures can be a good choice for those whose most of the teeth in the jaw are lost or severely damaged. 

Dentures when used as a top prosthesis for implant treatment can be called implant-supported dentures. These are fixed and permanent, which is quite the opposite of traditional complete dentures that can be detached and put on at your convenience. Such dentures are also known as an all-on-X, which can be:

  • All-on-four dental implants. The denture is bound on four dental implants spreading out at a reasonable patio in one arch;
  • All-on-six implants. This means the denture is held by six dental implants inserted in a single arch.

3. A note from Sydney Dental

Hopefully this read on the components of a dental implant from Sydney is informative and helpful to you in choosing between your tooth restoration options. If you are still unsure of anything in search of a new unforgettably stunning smile, do not hesitate to reach out to us. We are at 499-501 Ba Hat St, Ward 8, District 10, HCMC, Vietnam looking forward to your visit. You may also call us at (028) 3504 9440 for a free no-obligation comprehensive consultation. Your pretty, shiny smile is 100% guaranteed at Sydney Dental!

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