It shouldn’t be a surprise that not all cosmetic dentists are equally capable of giving you an attractive dental implant. But what you might not know is what subtle differences separate the most attractive dental implants from those that are less attractive. Here are five ways that your dentist can make the difference in your dental implant results.
Dental implants should be placed as though they were a properly situated natural part of your dental arch. They should be placed so that they fill the gap without crowding on either side. This doesn’t always mean that they should be placed exactly where the old tooth was. Sometimes moving the tooth root slightly can lead to a better cosmetic result.
There may also not be enough space for a dental implant in a gap that’s been left. Orthodontics may sometimes be recommended to create the proper space for an attractive dental implant.
The angle of the tooth is also vital to the proper appearance. Tilting of the tooth one way or another will make your smile crooked, can lead to crowding, and may have functional problems as well as cosmetic ones.
Surgical guides designed by computer and manufactured to control the placement of the dental implant can help, but they can’t ensure perfect placement every time–that depends on the dentist.
Preserving gum tissue around your dental implant is vital to ensuring an attractive result. Ideally, we want to maintain your gum contouring in its full, natural position around the dental implant as well as the natural teeth on either side of the dental implant. This would ensure a healthy, attractive scalloped appearance to the gums. This is not as easy as it sounds: the gums are very sensitive tissues and they don’t like being mixed with materials they aren’t accustomed to. Without proper care, the portion of gum material that rises between teeth, called the papillae, can die or retreat. Worst of all, the gum material around the dental implant can retreat, too, exposing the dental implant.
Achieving the right color balance for your dental implant is a challenge. The dental implant should seem like it’s of a family with your other teeth, but shouldn’t be exactly like them. It’s also a challenge to give the proper translucency–see-through–properties without exposing that at the center of the artificial crown is an implant, not a natural tooth.
For the most attractive results, get teeth whitening before the procedure. This allows your replacement tooth to be matched with your teeth at their best.
Your natural teeth all go together, but they’re also all individuals. Symmetry dictates that each tooth should look like its twin (such as a central incisor that looks like the other central incisor), but not exactly like. All your teeth have their own individual characters and your dental implant should be no different–which, ironically, means it should be different.