Temporary Teeth While Implants are Healing
Q: I need to have some front teeth pulled and implants, but am very concerned about what I will be wearing during the months waiting for the permanent teeth after implant healing. What options are there?
A: On occasion I will put my foot in my mouth and say the wrong thing at the wrong time to the wrong person. Example: I had a patient in your situation and told her: “Don’t, worry. We won’t let you walk around missing front teeth like an Okefenokee.” It turns out the patient really was an “Okefonokee”. They are the people from the South Georgia, North Florida area consisting of a shallow swamp of 438,000-acres. There main industry is bee keeping and honey production. Who knew?
Options for temporary teeth during implant treatment:
- Nothing. This allows things to heal faster; the doctor’s preference.
- The “flipper”; a removable denture that could cover the entire palate and have metal claps that clip to your other teeth.
- Nesbit denture: one or two teeth that have small pink or white clasps that engage the adjacent teeth; also removable.
- Essex retainer: Looks like a clear bleaching tray, night guard or Invisalign appliance, but has artificial denture teeth embedded in the places you are missing teeth.
- PEEK Abutments and temporary crowns: If your bone is strong enough at the time of placement of the implant, as measured by the Osstell sound wave implant stability monitor, you can have temporary crowns immediately attached to the implants via a small plastic abutment.
All due respect to all our friends at the Okefonokee swamp!
Dr. Mitchell Josephs practices Implant, Cosmetic and General Dentistry with an emphasis on implants, porcelain veneers, and complex crown and bridge treatment. He is on staff at JFK Medical Center and is a Faculty Advisory Board member at McGill University’s Faculty of Dentistry. He completed his residency at Manhattan’s Beth Israel Medical Center and Mt. Sinai Hospital.