Healthy and functioning teeth impact your health, comfort, confidence and physical appearance. Regular dental care helps preserve a patient’s natural teeth. However, sometimes a dentist must remove and replace a damaged tooth. If so, your dentist will help you find the best tooth replacement options for your situation.
Thanks to a wide range of functional and attractive tooth replacement options, the patient’s quality of life and confidence don’t have to suffer.
Southview Dentistry offers tooth replacement options including implants, fixed bridges, and dentures.
The American Dental Association recommends that depending on the situation, a patient may need to consult with multiple specialists during the tooth replacement process. You may want to consult with:
The best option for you depends on your unique situation, budget, and dental health. However, you should always start with consulting your regular dentist. They will be able to make recommendations regarding the best options for your particular needs.
Dental implants are a popular option to replace a single tooth, a few teeth, or even a full set. A dental surgeon places titanium posts in place of the tooth’s natural root. The implant secures the replacement tooth solidly in place.
Depending on the quantity and placement of the implants, it can be an involved process. Typically, implants involve the following three steps:
Your dentist may be able to perform each step within the same visit, but sometimes the process may require several weeks.
Since implants require surgery, the patient must be relatively healthy. Also, the patient must have the adequate bone density in the mouth in order to support the implants. People who heal slowly due to certain chronic illnesses may also prefer a less invasive tooth replacement option.
Also, this is one of the more expensive options, so cost may prohibit some patients from choosing implants.
A fixed bridge replaces one or more missing teeth. Your dentist bonds it in place permanently and you must see a dentist if you need to have it removed. Like implants, they are a permanent tooth replacement option that looks attractive and functions well.
Fixed bridges may affect surrounding teeth and you need to make extra efforts when cleaning to maintain healthy oral hygiene. In some cases, they may not be the best option. Talk with your dentist about your specific needs and lifestyle.
Partial dentures are a removable tooth replacement option featuring your replacement tooth attached to a plastic base that matches the color of your gums. Some patients have a hard time getting use to partial dentures. Also, you typically have to remove them for cleaning and sleep.
Removable partial dentures often don’t feel as natural or as stable as fixed bridges or implants.
This option is a variation on implants. Basically, only four dental implants support a full-arch denture.
Since these are removable dentures they don’t have all the same benefits as a fixed bridge or individual implants. Sometimes they need to be replaced after damage. However, they can be a good option for patients who are not eligible for individual implants or fixed bridges.
A tooth-supported fixed bridge is similar to a fixed bridge only you use your own teeth to support the bridge. Dentists most commonly use this method to replace a single tooth rather than multiple teeth.
This option is more expensive than a removable denture. The patient must pay extra attention to oral hygiene and cleaning. Also, this method doesn’t prevent bone loss like implants.
Dentists must grind the nearby teeth to accommodate the bridge. Some patients may prefer another option like a fixed bridge that does not require grinding healthy teeth.
Your first step towards dental health is regular dental care including a comprehensive exam and cleaning. Be sure to follow any oral hygiene and preventative health routines recommended by your dentist. Preventative health may eliminate or decrease the odds that you will ever need tooth replacement.
However, sometimes you cannot avoid losing a tooth or teeth. In that case, your dental team will help you select the best tooth replacement options for you. Call Southview Dentistry to schedule an examination today.