If you’re considering a dental implant, you may be wondering how it works and if you should have permanent crown cement or a screw to attach the crown. At Pennino Family Dentistry in Barrington, IL, we use these long-lasting tooth replacement options.
How Dental Implants Work
Let’s begin by discussing dental implants. They are used for different purposes, so they come in a variety of types, shapes, and sizes. Some are a part of a single tooth. Others replace multiple teeth. Still others are a bridge (or even many bridges) across your teeth or your dentures.
In all cases, the top part that looks like a tooth is called a crown. It sits above the gumline.
Titanium Screw for Dental Restoration
In some cases, the crown attaches to a titanium screw or implant. The screw attaches to your jaw bone. What’s more it replaces the root of a missing natural tooth.
Pros of Dental Screw
In the plus column, the screw securely fastens your crown to you implant, so you don’t need cement. It also offers the advantage of easy removal. If the crown breaks, wears down, gets knocked out, or becomes otherwise damaged, your dentist can replace it with relative ease. This is also beneficial when a temporary crown is being placed before the permanent crown.
Cons of Dental Screw
On the downside, the screw’s hole could be visible—even if it is covered with a tooth-colored filling. Cosmetically, this could be undesirable. Very rarely, the crown may chip around the access hole.
Permanent Crown Cement
Sometimes the dentist can cement the crown to the implant. When there isn’t enough natural tooth to hold the crown, a post (also called an abutment) is used. A post is a “mini tooth” shaped implant that holds the crown in place.
Pros of Cement
Cosmetically, this may be preferable. There is no access hole, so of course, none is visible. When the crown shows in your smile (i.e., front teeth), this can be important.
Cons of Cement
In sensitive patients, the cement may cause gum inflammation and even bone loss. Plus, removing a cemented crown poses more difficulty than removing a screw.
Final Decision on Screw vs Cement
Sometimes the condition of your mouth, the implant type you need, and other circumstance will dictate whether you need a dental screw and/or whether cement is an option. Other times, the dentists at Pennino Family Dentistry will explain your options to you.
Whatever you decide, you will regain function (chewing) with a dental implant. It will make you want to smile.