What is this procedure?
Once the embedded implants have properly integrated with the bone, you are now ready for the next phase of the implant treatment, which is fabricating the dental crown (artificial teeth) and securing it to the implant unit with the use of an abutment (connector). This is also known as the prosthetic phase of the treatment.
A prosthodontist or restorative dentist will carry out the procedures, which typically involves the following steps:
There are two ways the new teeth can be secured to your implants:
Left Figure: Healing cap covering the underlying implant.
Figure: Screw-retained crowns with access holes before being sealed with tooth- coloured fillings.
Which is better – a Cement-retained or a Screw-retained Crown?
Screw-retained crowns offer retrievability should there even be a need to remove the crowns for repair before reinstalling them in your mouth. Cemented crowns cannot be removed without firstly being destroyed after which new crowns will have to be made thereby increasing the overall long term costs.
However, cemented crowns have the advantage of not having the access holes which may be a cosmetic issue to some.
The likelihood of having to retrieve the implant crowns is low as most of them function very well without giving any problems.
How long does it take to make the new tooth/teeth (dental crown)?
Depending on the complexity of the prosthesis, it may take one week to a month to make them.
How soon thereafter can I begin to eat and function?
You should be able to function immediately after the prosthesis have been installed in your mouth. Your dentist may seal the screw access holes at a separate visit. He or she may also want to see you again for a final review.