Unexpected Benefit of Implant
Mr. Su is one of typical Chinese who has a fair number of bad teeth. For example, his upper right second premolar (Fig.1: 4) has a crown, post and root canal. Still the tooth has root tip infection (*), although he does not notice that. The upper left 2nd molar has a filling (Fig.2: F). In addition, Mr. Su has lost the lower right 1st molar for long time; an implant has not had a crown also for long time (Fig.3: I). When he first visited our office 10 months ago, his major concern was that the lower left 1st molar had constant pain. He was afraid that this tooth might be also going to be extracted. Our initial exam indicates that this molar tooth (Fig.4: 19) has a little bit root tip infection (<). It does not need to be taken out at that moment.
Our priority was to place a crown on the implant (Fig.5: C). To his surprise, the pain on the lower left 1st molar has gone by itself ever since he can chew with the implant crown on the right side! Our explanation is before he had the crown over the implant, he mainly chewed on the left side. The constant chewing and pressure traumatized the lower left 1st molar which had already had a little bit root tip infection. Now Mr. Su can chew both sides. The vulnerable (weak) lower left 1st molar gets enough rest. The infection becomes a little bit less severe. Therefore the pain is gone.
As mentioned by one of our implant patients, every single of our teeth is an organ. We almost cannot live without it. Implant is the best method to restore our missing tooth. It can give us unexpected benefits.
Xin Wei, DDS, PhD, MS 1st edition 12/14/2012, last revision 12/16/2012