If you’ve lost a tooth you’re probably facing a lot of questions: what should you do? Is it okay to deal with it? Can you afford to have it replaced? When is the right time to see the dentist?
These are all legitimate questions and worries to have when you lose a tooth. It’s a frightening time and one where you have to face a lot of possible life chances. At Northwest Dental Group we want to make recovering from tooth loss easy by helping you make the right choice for treating and restoring your lost tooth with either a bridge or a dental implant.
Bridges Vs. Implants: What Are They?
Dental bridges and implants are the most popular ways to restore a missing tooth. Bridges are by far the most common and have been around a lot longer, making them the first choice that comes to mind for many people who’ve lost teeth.
A bridge is a porcelain restoration that consists of three pieces: a false tooth and two crowns on either side. The crowns are attached to the teeth that were next to the missing one and the false tooth sits right where the lost tooth used to be.
Bridges are effective at restoring the cosmetic appearance of your lost tooth and the role it filled in your mouth. They’re also a good way to stop the neighboring teeth from shifting and falling out as well – a common side effect of tooth loss.
What a bridge doesn’t stop, however, is the bone loss that comes along with losing a tooth. Your body reabsorbs the bone that used to hold your tooth, causing a change in the shape of your jaw and instability in other teeth. Your bridge will help prevent instability, but bone loss will continue, which can result in the bottom of your false tooth separating from the gumline. When this happens it will be obvious you have a crown – they’ll be a visible gap beneath it!
That isn’t to say that bridges aren’t a good option – they work just fine for most people. They’re also far more affordable than a dental implant, making them great for patients who have a tight treatment budget.
Dental Implants: Premier Tooth Restoration
Implants are the newest, most impressive, and most realistic way to replace a tooth. The implant itself is a titanium screw that is placed in the space your missing tooth used to be. It fills the same role as a natural tooth root, bonding firmly to the bone and supporting a crown that we place on top of it.
Dental implants are by far the most preferred method of tooth replacement. Not only to they look great, but they also correct a lot of the problems that bridges used to have!
- Because the implant bonds with your bone you’ll never have to worry about bone loss. The implant’s integration with your jaw stabilizes the bone and gives it something to hold on to. With proper care an implant will last for life!
- When you get a bridge you’re essentially sacrificing two healthy teeth to restore a single missing one. Your teeth have to be reshaped to fit under a crown, destroying healthy tooth tissue in the process. An implant, on the other hand, only affects the tooth it’s replacing. When we place your implant and put a crown on it the neighboring teeth will be unaffected. If anything they’ll end up healthier!
- An implant lasts for life, giving you the stability and reliability of a natural tooth. Bridges, on the other hand, wear out and have to be replaced after a certain number of years.
What Do We Recommend?
The proper restoration is all about you: we’ll never push you toward a solution you won’t be completely happy with!
That said, there are reasons we recommend dental implants as the best way to replace lost teeth. Not only do they last longer, look more natural, and feel better in your mouth, they’re also a healthier alternative.
Implants are the next best thing to growing a new tooth, and we can’t do that yet! They might be expensive, but the investment in your future dental health is definitely worth it!
Let’s Explore Your Options Together
We want to help you make the best decision for your dental health, and we can only do that by meeting with you to get a full understanding of your needs. If you want to find out what our Rochester dental team can do for you just make an appointment with us today!