Protecting Your Kids’ Dental Health at Every Age
As a parent, we know your top priority is ensuring your children's health and well-being. While you may already have a good handle on their physical health, it is important...
If you’re missing a tooth, you already know some of the impacts it can make on your daily life. Not only can a missing tooth make you self conscious of your smile, but even the loss of a back tooth can cause your other teeth to shift and drift out of place, changing the look and feel of your bite.
We get it – there are some big obstacles between you and restoration, and it’s easy to understand the hesitation behind getting a missing tooth repaired. The cost, dental work involved, and time commitment can be significant. If you are like many others with dental anxiety, these hurdles can be quickly magnified.
Fortunately, modern dental care cuts through some of the stress. Choosing the tooth replacement method that works with your needs is the first step to getting rid of your tooth replacement anxiety and moving forward towards better smile.
When it comes to replacing a missing tooth, you have three different treatment options. Replacement teeth should last you years at a time, so it’s important to choose the treatment option that’s right for your lifestyle and budget not only in the moment, but for down the road as well.
A dental implant is an artificial tooth that is rooted by a secure post surgically placed in the upper or lower jaw. Implants provide support where it is most necessary and feels the most similar to a natural tooth.
If you choose to have an implant, your treatment process will look similar to this:
Pros: Implants are the most stable method of tooth replacement – they can last for a life, and look and feel natural.
Cons: Implants have a longer treatment process, and come with a higher price tag.
A dental bridge consists of a false tooth attached to two crowns, which fit over neighboring teeth “anchoring” the false tooth in place. Bridges are the simplest way to replace a missing tooth and a bridge doesn’t require surgery.
If you choose to have a bridge, your treatment process will look similar to this:
While a bridge can be a great option for some patients, mainly those missing single teeth, a bridge can weakens the surrounding “anchor” teeth, and the bridge could lead to further tooth loss if the anchor teeth are not strong enough to support the structure.
Pros: A bridge is more affordable, and is a quicker treatment option.
Cons: Not as secure as an implant, a bridge may affect the teeth next to the bridge and will not last as long.
As the name describes, a removable partial denture can be easily removed for cleaning. When in place, a partial denture is fixed to a plastic base that matches the color of your gums and will have some form of clasp that attaches to your natural teeth to hold it in place.
Partial dentures are right for patients missing a number of teeth, but not the majority.
If you choose to have a partial denture, your treatment process will look similar to this:
Pros: Usually less expensive than a bridge or implant, removable and easy to replace. Partial dentures are more affordable.
Cons: Shortest lifespan of these options, and can be bulky, uncomfortable or unnatural feeling.