Replacing more than one missing tooth is a decision which can bear quite a bit of weight. It’s a decision that requires much thought, and the options can be confusing. There are a number of tooth replacement alternatives, but which is best for you?
The choice will depend on a variety of factors, and an understanding of the various options will help to make the solution to become clear. Are the missing teeth localized to a single area of the mouth, or is there a missing tooth on each side? Are the teeth in question in the front or in the back? Are the teeth currently missing, or are you facing eventual tooth loss?
Of all of the tooth replacement options, implant dentistry offers the most versatile solutions available. Dental implants are a permanent alternative that can be customized to replace individual teeth or multiple teeth. Used individually, implants closely resemble natural teeth in function, design, and appearance. Multiple implants can effectively restore a broader chewing surface. In combination with other restorations, dental implants can even enhance the effectiveness of dental bridges, partials, and dentures.
Dental bridges can be used to permanently replace one or more missing teeth, but it is important to note their limitations. Bridges must be connected to at least two neighboring natural teeth, requiring the removal of natural tooth structure. Rather than anchor directly to the underlying bone like a dental implant, a bridge is suspended above the gumline. This can make chewing, brushing, and flossing a challenge.
Dentures and partials, removable tooth replacement alternatives, offer little in terms of stability and comfort, unless they are stabilized with dental implants. Alone, these options are not anchored to a stable foundation. Instead, they rest on the gum tissue or rely on metal hooks to clasp onto neighboring teeth. Without proper stimulation, the underlying jaw bone will begin to resorb, altering the fit and feel of the dentures. However, dentures can be an appropriate tooth replacement solution when used in combination with dental implants for added support and the prevention of bone loss.
Make an informed decision when considering tooth replacement. Contact Dallas Oral Surgery Associates today for more information.