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Dental Implant Abutment – Procedure, Benefits & Aftercare

Dental Implant Abutment Procedure, Benefits & Aftercare

Key Takeaways:

  • The abutment is the “connector” between the tooth implant and the artificial tooth.
  • It shapes and tightens the gum tissue and prevents food from settling around the implant.
  • The abutment can be fragile, so avoid rinsing, spitting, or touching the wound on the day of surgery.

A dental abutment is connected to a dental implant. It is a major component in fitting a dental implant to the jaw. Abutments can also be used to speed up the healing process of gum tissue.

If you’re going for replacement teeth and interested in knowing what an abutment is and its purpose in your mouth, keep reading this article.

What is a Dental Implant Abutment?

The metal part that serves as a foundation for a crown is called an abutment. An abutment functions as a connector; one part is attached to your jawbone, while the crown is fitted on the other end.

After you recover from your operation, your dentist will attach the abutment, which is a metal link, to your dental implant. The abutment firmly holds your crown and fastens it to the implant. 

If you have a dental bridge, two abutments will receive crowns, which pontics will join. Pontics are other replacement teeth that sit on top of your gums.

The use of abutment in any procedure is done with local anesthesia. Abutments can be made of Zirconia, gold, stainless steel, titanium, or polyether ether ketone. 

What Is the Purpose of Abutments?

The abutment connects the tooth implant and the artificial tooth. The tooth implant can be the crown, bridge, or denture. 

Dental implant abutments are used in restorative dentistry and are sometimes called prosthetic implant abutments

Ceramic abutments are not as strong as metal abutments. But they are used to enhance the appearance of the prosthesis by blending seamlessly with the prosthetic tooth. 

The general purpose of an abutment is to provide a base for the functional restoration of bites and the restoration of beautiful smiles.  

What Are The Different Types of Abutments For Dental Implants?

1. Prefabricated

Manufacturing companies usually produce prefabricated abutments, and they come in various sizes and shapes. The prefabricated abutment is also known as a stock abutment.

They can be made from Zirconium, gold, titanium, and surgical stainless steel. Titanium abutments are popularly used because of the excellent properties of titanium alloys. They have good strength and biocompatibility.

The zirconium abutment is the most recently used to complement the aesthetics of dental implant Brisbane restoration. 

2. Custom Made

The custom-made abutments are made at the dental laboratory after the dentist takes an impression of the top of the implant made with the adjacent teeth.

The abutment is unique to the patient and designed to take the form of the missing natural tooth. Custom abutments are created to fit the gum and soft tissue contours while being compatible with the crown of a natural tooth. 

The abutment can then be made of zirconia, titanium, or titanium anodised to a gold colour. They are a more suitable fit for your teeth. The impression taken of your mouth is used to create an abutment that matches the angle, shape, and size of your mouth.

Custom abutments are much more expensive than stock or prefabricated abutments. However, they have better aesthetics.

How Are Dental Abutments Placed?

1. Place the Implant

Once the dentist has fixed the implants, the next step towards placing the dental abutment is to expose the implant.

A second surgery is made to place the abutment. Your dentist makes a small incision on your gum tissue. 

2. Digital Abutment & Crown Design

This is where the dentist takes note of the choice of abutment to use. If you are going for a custom-made abutment, your dentist takes an impression of your mouth to make one that matches your mouth’s shape and profile.

3. Place Healing Abutments

A temporary abutment known as a healing abutment is secured to the implant. Healing abutments are called healing caps, and they aid in recovering the gum tissue surrounding the implant site. 

The final abutments are placed after gum healing so that the prosthesis and implant can be connected.

4. Place Final Abutments

Your dentist places the final abutment when the gums have healed. 

Note: Abutments may be implanted alongside the implant (1-stage surgery). Or, after implant placement, they could be put in during a subsequent procedure (2-stage surgery).

What To Expect After The Procedure?

The healing process for gums around abutments typically takes 4 to 6 weeks.

After the surgery, follow your surgeon’s recommendations for what meals to eat throughout that period.

Your dentist will give you directions on how to clean the area around the abutments. Cleaning properly helps to heal and prevents infection. Ensure you adhere strictly to all instructions from your surgeon to avoid complications.

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How The Crown Is Connected To the Abutment

Your dentist can use either of the two methods below to attach the crown to try abutment: Use a tiny screw (called screw-retained dental crowns) or use dental cement (called cemented crowns).

The Screw Retained Dental Crowns hold abutments and crowns firmly in place while making replacement and repair simple without harming neighbouring components. They are easy to replace and are not suitable for front-row teeth. 

The screw-retained crown is more suitable for the teeth towards the rear of the mouth. 

The Dental Cement is bonded to the abutment using special dental cement. They are aesthetically pleasing and cosmetically appealing though the repair and replacement are harder.

When cemented crowns fail, the dentist should take out the entire crown and replace them. For many patients, seeing crowns with screws may be upsetting. For the teeth in the front row, cemented dental crowns are the best option.

Benefits of Using A Healing Abutment

  • A healing abutment also called a healing cap or gingival former helps to promote tissue healing (hard and soft) around the implant.
  • It also protects the main cap of the implant from accumulating debris and plaque.
  • It shapes and tightens the gum tissue and prevents food from settling around the implant.

 How Can I Care for Abutments?

  • You must gently but thoroughly rinse the area around your healing abutment as soon as you can see it. Do this every morning with the prescribed antibacterial mouthwash from your surgeon.
  • The day after your surgery, you are permitted to brush your teeth. But you must avoid brushing the gums or the healing abutment.
  • In the third and fourth week after your surgery, you may now gently wipe the healing abutment 2-3 times per day using some cotton dipped in the antimicrobial mouthwash.
  • All day long, keep rinsing with salt water. Food and plaque should come away without the need for vigorous scrubbing or wiping.
  • From the fifth week after your surgery, you can now brush your abutment but do so gently. Do not scrub hard, as you may hurt your gum tissue and implant. Check out, how to take care of dental implants to learn more!


What Should I Do After Abutment Surgery?

Avoid rinsing, spitting, or touching the wound on the day of surgery. Also, avoid chewing until the numbness from the anesthetic has worn off. 

How Long Does It Take For Dental Abutment To Heal?

Dental abutments take four to six weeks to heal.

How Long After Implant Can I Place Abutment?

One to two weeks after implants, your dentist will place the abutment.

What Should I Eat After Abutment Healing?

You can eat potato mash, yogurt, scrambled eggs, mashed banana, protein shakes, and Applesauce.

Is Abutment Surgery Painful?

It is little, or no pain felt in placing the abutment.

Written By: Dr Kent Tan
Edited By: Dr Zaheer Kadwa
Reviewed By: Dr Ealin Lee


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Dr. Kent Tan - Author Bio

Dr Kent Tan is the top dental implant and cosmetic treatment expert. On average, he performs 500 to 1000 dental implants yearly, making him one of the most experienced dental implant surgeons in Perth, Western Australia.

Dr Kent is a certified Invisalign provider and has helped many patients achieve straighter teeth with a transparent braces system. In addition, he is skilled in performing a wide range of cosmetic dental treatments such as teeth whitening, dental veneers and bonding.

Dr Kent graduated from the University of Queensland and then went on to lecture in dental implants. He furthered his qualifications by graduating from the Master Clinician Programme in Implant Dentistry in Los Angeles, USA. This additional education allows him to provide his patients with the best possible care.

Customers Review

Mark TaylorMark Taylor
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Rob SmithRob Smith
12:33 24 Feb 24
I was at a really low point in my life, had an accident 2 years ago which broke 3 of my teeth and a bridge in between my 2 front top teeth. From that moment I became extremely conscious of going out,socialising and found my self withdrawn and depressed as I didn't know what to do.Then a friend told me about My Implant Dentist. I plucked up the courage and went for my first consultation at Mindarie Quinns dental practice with Dr Zaheer who explained all my options and advised all on 4 top and bottom.Not only Dr Zaheer but all the staff and doctors at both Mindarie and South Perth were amazing and extremely professional and made the whole process seemless.Having the treatment has given me back confidence and enabled me to socalise and do things with my family and friends that I couldn't do before.I would like to thank Dr Zaheer and all the team at My Implant Dentist for everything they have done for me and recommended them to everyone I speak to.I just can't stop smiling!!!
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Toby HawkesToby Hawkes
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From start to Finnish i felt very comfortable. The whole experience for me was more than just new teeth.For me it was a journey of self discovery that changed my whole life.I found that everyone that I encountered was very professional &friendly &made my experience so pleasant.They deserve more than 5 stars.Thank you so much🥰
Selina HansonSelina Hanson
09:19 01 Feb 24
My experience with My Implant Dentist has been excellent from start to finish. The staff at the front desk were incredibly kind and helpful. The medical treatments throughout were professional and pain free. I would definitely recommend them to anyone considering this service
08:14 30 Jan 24
So grateful to have found this place. I needed a wisdom tooth out. They were able to x-ray and fit me in promptly. Extremely high quality and professional service at an affordable price! I feel lucky to have found an honest and helpful Dentist especially in today's economy. Lovely staff all round. I will be coming here from now on.Thanks again :)
Catalina Te MaroCatalina Te Maro
12:02 21 Nov 23
From the moment I walked in the door My Implant dentist were very caring and professional. As a dental nurse myself I knew I would be a very hard case as other specialists said they could not help me. After my first consultation with Dr Kent he was confident that he could help me and I was provided with a clear plan for my top and bottom all on four procedure. My new teeth are perfect and so natural looking. He has made the impossible possible for me. I can smile and eat the foods I love again and this has changed my life. Thank you so much to all staff and especially Dr Kent Tan who I can say is the best implant dentist in Perth.
Bec SmithBec Smith
11:30 14 Aug 23
I can’t thank the team and dentists at My Implant dentist enough! From the girls working the front desk to the dental nurses assisting the dentist’s, Dr Kent Tan and Dr Ealin. I had the All on four implants and I can’t explain how much this has transformed my life in such a great way.I will always be thankful to be able to have this treatment!Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
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Great service and very professional both admin and Dentists
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My implant Dentist Mooorooka is an amazing team. The receptionist staff are very welcoming and super lovely to talk to. The dentists are very experienced and knowledgeable. The assistants are very lovely. The service 10/10. Highly recommend!
moonira Bassamoonira Bassa
03:55 25 Nov 23
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solomon issaksolomon issak
00:27 18 Nov 23
The receptionist team have been very helpful, helped me organise early super release for my implant treatment. Dr Zaheer is an amazing implant dentist, discussed with me on what type of surgery I needed and have also treated the surgery on me. Dr Reza is very kind. The dental assistants are very friendly. Highly recommend My Implant Dentist Brisbane
Tan Binh NgoTan Binh Ngo
02:59 31 Oct 23
I picked up”Moorooka Dental Care” contact details from the web. I rang for a few questions and the happy voice of Frances had calmed my anxiety down quickly!Dr Kadwa greeted me from the front bench, took me in for the X-ray, dental assessment, carefully explaining the procedure, answered my questions and quoted for the works. He offered to breakdown work items to suit with my needs. The quote was surprisingly very compatible with my previous quote from overseas. (I know I am going to have my dental treatment in the safe zone, most medical advances in Australia).The implant work went smoothly, so smooth that the team had to remind me “Done!”, well beyond my imagination.When he saw me off with the aftercare instructions, I could feel his professional manners with caring characters. I know he has done a few thousand implants but I still received the care of his first. Thanks Zaheer!I requested X-ray images, Fatimatu responded promptly with friendly chatting.I also would like to thank Dr Linh Trần who was in the operation team at the treatment and follow up cares.
Melrey LudivicoMelrey Ludivico
05:10 26 Oct 23
My implant dentist brisbane 5/5. Dr Linh, Dr Zaheer and Dr Reza have been amazing and have looked after me in my procedures. Frances the receptionist was the first person to contact me to get me to come in since I have been looking around. Excellent service and friendly staff
Matthew WinkelmannMatthew Winkelmann
22:33 17 Oct 23
Moorooka dental have been a pleasure to deal with. I did a bit of research into dental implants and most companies had hidden fees. I booked a consult and was contacted within a few hrs to get me in and get the ball rolling. I choose to go with he implants using my super. They helped me to do all the paperwork to release the money. Definitely a good dental clinic.

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