If you have a missing tooth or multiple missing teeth, there are a few replacement options you may be considering. Here, our Okotoks dentists discuss some of the benefits of replacing missing teeth with dental bridges.
What is a dental bridge?
A dental bridge is a fixed dental appliance that bridges the gap left by missing teeth. It can be used to replace a single missing tooth or several missing teeth in a row. Bridges are normally made of two dental crowns (one on each of the teeth on either side of the gap), and a false tooth (or teeth) that bridges the space in between.
How do I know which type of tooth replacement to choose?
Every dental restoration and tooth replacement comes with different pros and cons. Based on a variety of factors, including your needs, budget, and lifestyle, your dentist will recommend the most appropriate tooth replacement option for you.
Dental Bridges or Dental Implants?
Dental bridges and dental implants both are long-term solutions for missing teeth. One important difference between the two is that dental bridges typically need to be replaced after 5 to 15 years, while dental implants can last for 25 years or more if properly cared for.
However, a dental bridge procedure is significantly less invasive than the dental implant procedure (which requires surgery), and it requires a shorter recovery time as well. In most cases, dental implants are more expensive than bridges and are less likely to be covered by insurance.
Dental Bridges or Dentures?
The main difference between dental bridges and dentures is that dentures are removable, while bridges are fixed to the surrounding teeth.
Most of the time, a dental bridge will be recommended when there are only a few missing teeth to replace, or when the missing teeth are only on one side of the mouth. If you require multiple teeth, or a full jaw of teeth, to be replaced, dentures may be a better option.
Dental bridges tend to be a little more costly than partial dentures, but both tooth replacement options are covered by most dental insurance plans.
Why replace missing teeth?
A variety of dental health problems can arise when missing teeth are not replaced. It can make chewing and speaking difficult, and over time, the teeth around the gap can shift out of position, worsening the problem. In addition, you could experience facial collapse due to a loss of jaw bone density caused by missing teeth.
Bridges, implants, and dentures are all different solutions that can help you avoid these issues. They all fill the space left by missing teeth, prevent the surrounding teeth from shifting, and help preserve your ability to chew and speak. Speak to your dentist about which option is right for you.