Just one missing tooth can completely change the appearance of your smile. Getting a partial for a single missing tooth is illogical, but getting a single dental implant is fairly common. Take a look at some of the most common questions about single-tooth dental implants.
How soon after extractions can you have a single-tooth implant done?
With a single-tooth implant, it may be possible to place the new tooth immediately after an old one is pulled. However, it is more common for the dentist to allow the mouth to heal for a bit and the soft tissue to close before they install the implant in the jaw. The reason for this often mandatory waiting period is to give the tissue and bone proper time to mend after pulling the root of an old tooth out. If this healing period is not allowed, it can prevent the new implant from seating properly in the gum line in line with the rest of the teeth.
Will your gum tissue enclose around the new implant as your mouth heals?
Implants would not be very effective or attractive to look at if the soft tissue never enclosed around the new tooth. Therefore, the cosmetic dentist who performs the surgery will do all they can with placement and aftercare to ensure the soft tissue does enclose around the new tooth just like it would a natural one. Some dentists use regenerative treatments to help restore the soft gum tissue to a healthy state so they will grow more securely around the new tooth.
Are there any downfalls to worry about with single-tooth dental implants?
There really are not a lot of downfalls with dental implants and especially not with a single implant, but there are some risks that your dentist will go over with you before you opt to have the surgery done even if it is just one implant being done. For example, some people can experience ongoing pain or numbness in their jaw where the dental implants were placed. There may also be some risk of infection at the implant site, which is usually not a major concern as long as you follow what the surgeon tells you as far as aftercare goes. Some people do have issues with their body rejecting the implant, which can lead to swelling and irritation around the new implant, but this is a mostly a rare occurrence.