Regular dental implants take time. Typically, your dentist inserts a metal post and leaves it there to implant into the bone for a period of months. When this process is complete, they add the tooth to finish the implant off.
This isn't always a great solution on a visible tooth. While your dentist can give you a temporary denture to cover the gap, this may not be the most comfortable or cosmetically pleasing solution. Alternative treatments, like immediate load implants, may suit you better. How does this alternative work?
How Do Immediate Load Implants Work?
Immediate load implants follow the same basic principles and treatment times as regular implants. The difference here is that your dentist places a tooth on the implant post when they put the post in rather than waiting.
Generally, implant posts don't carry the load of an implant tooth until they're bedded into the bone. The concern here is that the post won't be stable enough to hold the tooth.
However, immediate load implants can hold a tooth. This tooth may ultimately be replaced with a more robust one at the end of the treatment, but it typically looks more natural and may be easier for you to manage than a denture alternative.
Can You Have an Immediate Load Implant?
Not all patients are suitable candidates for immediate load implantation. You need to tick a few boxes before your dentist is likely to agree to this solution.
For example, the bone that will hold the implant post needs to be strong and dense enough to give immediate stability. The post needs to be inserted in such a way that it is strong enough to hold a tooth. Your bone may need to be able to hold a different design of post than the norm.
So if your bone is up to scratch and your dentist has done this kind of procedure before, then this may be an option. You'll also have to commit to taking extra care with the temporary tooth for the few months that it takes for the post to embed itself.
It may be tempting to forget that the post is still not completely stable and that you could inadvertently dislodge or damage it if you use it like a normal tooth. So, you may need to modify your diet to keep away from harmful hard foods and may need to eat more carefully until the permanent tooth goes on.
To find out more about immediate load implants and whether you can have one, talk to your dentist about your dental implant options.