Dental Implants can be placed in many different ways and at different times relative to tooth loss. 1) At the time of tooth or teeth extraction (immediate dental implant placement) 2) shortly after the time of dental extraction (delayed dental implant placement) or 3) a long period of time after dental extractions or in sites where teeth have been missing for a long time. Who wants to wait forever to get a replacement tooth? Of course you do not want more than one dental surgical visits.
Dental Implants are best placed immediately after tooth extraction. For example if a tooth is cracked and needs to be replaced, the patient should be appointed for the tooth extraction and Dental Implant placement during the same dental visit. Once a tooth is extracted, bone cells become very active and are ready to heal as a result of tooth loss. Literally there will be a bony hole in the jawbone where the tooth used to be. If the site is left unfilled or without a “new root” or a dental implant, the gum and bone tissue will “collapse” into the bony hole where the tooth used to be. By placing Dental Implants immediately after tooth extraction, the patient will prevent collapse of gum and bone tissue and preserve the anatomy and architecture of the tooth supporting gum and bone tissue. Preserving tooth supporting gum and bone tissue produces more cosmetic implant retained crown and bridge work. When Dental Implants are placed Immediately at the time of tooth extraction, it is possible to produce cosmetic results that are comparable if not an exact match to natural teeth.
Delayed Dental Implant Surgery:
Delayed Dental Implant Placement is the preferred placement time when there is a invasive bony dental bone infection underlying or surrounding the tooth to be removed and replaced by a Dental Implant. The Dental Implant Placement Strategy is to remove the tooth causing the dental infection, “delay” for a period of time (typically 1-3 weeks) and place the Dental Implant once the infection has past, but prior to bone and gum tissue loss. If the “delay” is too long, the patient will lose gum and bone tissue and require time consuming, expensive and painful gum and bone grafting.
Dental Implant Surgery in a Missing Tooth Site:
Once a tooth is extracted, the patient will lose gum and bone tissue over time and may require time consuming, expensive and painful gum and bone grafting prerequisite to Dental Implant Surgery. It can be very difficult if not impossible to rebuild lost gum and bone tissue. In fact, once teeth have been missing for years, lost bone can never be totally put back, grown back or “grafted.” What a skilled Implant Dentist can do is graft back enough bone such that there is sufficient tissue for Dental Implant placement. In sites where gum and bone has been lost, the resulting crown or prosthetic can be equally functional as in implants and teeth with no tissue loss at all. Dental implant crowns, bridges or dental implant prosthetics need to be designed differently with tissue loss taken into consideration. Crowns may be taller due to there being less gum height and bridges and multi tooth implant prothesis may need to contain pink acrylic or porcelain to mimic and restore lost bone and gum tissue. Most of the time, prosthetics within areas of gum and bone loss are every bit as functional as implant dentistry in areas where there has been no gum and bone loss. In areas where gum and bone has been lost, the esthetics of the implant retained teeth may not be as good as in implant retained teeth where there has not been any bone or gum loss.
Obvious credits to StudioBDental.com for a lovely and educational graphic.