How Is a Crown Attached to a Dental Implant?

Close-up of implant and abutment

Are you looking for ways to fix your damaged or missing tooth?

Dental implants remain one of the preferred options for replacing a lost tooth.

Once your implant is installed, you’ll be able to enjoy a natural smile and a fully functional bite.

Your dental crown (the visible tooth) is attached in the final stage of treatment. We’ll take some time to explain the process, so you know what to expect.

But first, let’s start with the basics.

What is a dental implant?

A dental implant is a three-part structure that completely replaces a cracked, damaged, or missing tooth.

An implanted post is screwed into the jawbone, acting like a root. This anchors the rest of your artificial tooth in place.

Then, a connecting piece known as an abutment fits into the implant and holds the crown.

The crown is a custom-made tooth to fit precisely and match the color of your natural teeth. Crowns are designed to look, feel, and function like natural teeth.

What is the structure of a dental implant?

The three parts of a dental implant. Screw, Abutment, and Crown

The Crown

The Abutment

The Screw (post)

We often refer to the screw part of the implant as the post.

We screw the post directly into the jawbone.

The abutment then connects to the screw and holds the final crown in place.

How crowns attach to dental implants

Before the final implant crown can be attached, four to six months of healing is necessary to ensure the implant post provides proper support.

During this time, the bone heals and integrates with the implant (a process called osseointegration).

After this point, we can connect your implant crown to the abutment. There are two options for this:

  1. Use a tiny screw (called a screw-retained dental crown)
  2. Use dental cement (called a cemented crown)

Screw-retained crowns

Screw-retained dental crowns provide a greater level of convenience and access.

The level of convenience means they hold abutments and crowns securely while making replacement and repair convenient without causing damage to surrounding components.

As a result, it is easier to maintain dental crowns with screws.

Screw-retained crowns are easy to replace since crowns do need to be changed now and then.

However, this type of crown is not normally used for the front of the mouth, for aesthetic reasons.

They are more appropriate for teeth towards the rear of the mouth, where the hole on top is less visible.

Cemented dental crowns

This type of crown is bonded to the abutment using special dental cement.

Cemented crowns are more aesthetically pleasing, but are also more difficult to repair and replace.

Unlike screw-retained crowns, cemented crowns cannot be easily removed and swapped out.

When cemented crowns fail, the whole crown must be removed and replaced completely.

The bottom line

The way your dental crown attaches to the rest of a dental implant will depend on your unique case and preferences.

Dr. Jelsing will walk you through the options and explain the pros and cons of each in more detail.

To learn more about dental implants with Dr. Jelsing, contact our dental office to book an appointment today.

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Dr. Jelsing welcomes all patients from surrounding locations, including Tulsa, Sand Springs, Jenks, Bixby, Broken Arrow, Catoosa, and Owasso.

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