Should You Do Invisalign or Implants First?
While the task of straightening teeth may seem simple enough, there’s a lot that goes into orthodontics. Orthodontists have to balance a number of factors when treating each patient, including other procedures or treatments patients are receiving involving their teeth or jaw. If you’re thinking about getting dental implants and are curious about Invisalign, we can answer your questions about how to best proceed with both treatments.
What Are Dental Implants?
When someone loses a permanent tooth, there will be a very noticeable gap in their teeth. Not only is this the cause of self-consciousness in many people who’ve lost teeth, but it also can lead to oral health problems. For many patients, the best solution to fill in this gap is to get a dental implant.
A dental implant is an acrylic replacement tooth that looks and acts just like a real tooth. The dental implant gets connected directly to the jaw bone and makes for a sturdy and durable tooth replacement.
Dental Implant Procedure
In order to receive a dental implant, the implant must be put in through dental surgery. Posts are placed in the jaw where the missing tooth’s root would have been. Posts are typically made from titanium so they do not slip, rust, or crack. On top of the post is the crown, which serves as the replacement tooth. The crown is screwed into the post for a seamless fit. This is an outpatient surgery that requires some time for healing.
3 Types of Dental Implants
Three types of dental implants are used to fix a missing tooth or teeth.
The first is an implant for a single tooth. This is the most common type of treatment and uses one post to replace the missing tooth’s root and a crown. If you have one missing tooth or multiple that are not adjacent to each other, a single-tooth dental implant may be your best option.
The second type of dental implant is called an implant-supported bridge, which helps to replace several teeth. A bridge consists of two crowns on either side of your missing tooth gap with an artificial tooth held by those crowns in between. The process is similar to a single-tooth dental implant. However, the teeth missing in the middle of the gap will not receive a dental implant. The benefit of an implant-supported bridge is you can securely replace multiple teeth in a row without the cost of doing each tooth.
The third option is replacing all teeth in an implant-retain denture. This is the best option if you are missing a majority of your teeth. The denture is an artificial arch of teeth that rests on the gum line and gives you the appearance of a full smile. The problem with traditional dentures is they are removable, which means they can slip, slide, click, fall out, and make daily tasks like eating and talking uncomfortable. To fix this problem, you can permanently secure your denture with dental implants.
Dental Bridges and Invisalign
While Invisalign straightens teeth, bridges replace one or two missing teeth. The bridge consists of artificial teeth, a metal framework, and two crowns. The crowns go over existing teeth and serve as an anchor for the artificial teeth. The aligner will only move the natural teeth, not the artificial ones. The bridge is fixed and should only be removed by the dentist. For this style of treatment, it’s important that the patient meets with a dentist to make sure they are a good candidate for getting a dental bridge.
Getting Invisalign with Dental Implants
Having a nice smile is a great confidence booster for many people, and having Invisalign is a great way to enjoy a beautiful smile while improving your teeth. The plastic aligners are completely clear, meaning you’ll have an uncluttered smile for the duration of your treatment. The removable trays also make it more convenient to go about life as normally as possible while you straighten your teeth as well.
Getting both Invisalign and dental implants will complete your perfect smile since you won’t have any more gaps or crowding. However, you won’t be able to complete both treatments at the same time.
Getting Invisalign Before Dental Implants
Normally, tooth movement is possible due to the periodontal ligament surrounding each tooth. This small layer of strong but malleable tissue allows orthodontists to move teeth and give patients a better smile. When it comes to dental implants, the replacement tooth is attached directly to the jaw bone, so it can not be moved with either braces or Invisalign.
Because of this, patients looking to get Invisalign and dental implants should get Invisalign first. Your orthodontist will be able to plan the treatment so your teeth are moved to the perfect positions to result in a straight smile while making room for the new dental implant.
Once the straightening process with Invisalign is complete, you can have your dental implant installed. We’ll coordinate with your dental implant specialist to make sure your teeth are positioned just right to accommodate the new replacement tooth. We can also make sure the gap stays healthy while you wait for your teeth to straighten with Invisalign.
To learn more about dental implants and Invisalign, feel free to contact Milnor Orthodontics. You can also schedule a free consultation where we’ll be happy to make an assessment and give you a quote. We look forward to helping you get your ideal smile.
At Milnor Orthodontics, our experts are here to help you achieve a priceless smile. Call our office at (970) 484-3214 or visit milnororthodontics.com to learn more. We're located at 1103 S. Shields St. in Fort Collins, Colorado.