How Should You Bridge That Gap?
- Posted on: Aug 15 2017
Not so long ago, if a person were to lose a tooth, there was little, if anything that would be done to restore the appearance and functionality of the smile. Chewing capabilities would be altered, and remaining teeth would most likely shift, causing cosmetic problems. Today, we can bridge gaps between teeth, literally, with dental bridges. Thanks to advanced techniques, we can also close gaps with dental implants.
What patients want to know is how to choose the right treatment for their needs. To make an educated decision, one must have comprehensive details regarding each treatment option. We’ll like to provide a brief overview here to get you thinking about your ultimate goal in replacing missing teeth, and how we may help you meet that.
The Dental Bridge
A dental bridge is a fixture that is made in a dental lab with quality ceramic or porcelain and acrylic. Before the bridge is placed in the mouth, it looks like a partial denture, a row of three or four artificial teeth. What you need to know:
- A smaller up-front investment is needed for a dental bridge.
- This is a non-surgical treatment option for tooth replacement.
- The teeth adjacent to the space need to be reduced and fitted with dental crowns. This could pose a future risk for decay around the crown.
- The lifespan of a dental bridge may be as little as 5 years or as many as 15.
The Dental Implant
A dental implant is a solitary structure, a post that sits in the jawbone. The purpose of this method of treatment is to restore the substructure that was once fulfilled by the natural root. After an implant is situated beneath the gums, the bone will grow around the post, establishing a new foundation for an artificial tooth. What you need to know:
- Dental implant treatment involves a minor oral surgery that is somewhat similar to a root canal.
- The up-front cost of dental implant treatment is higher than a dental bridge.
- There is no expiration date on dental implants. With good oral care, these fixtures can last many decades.
- A dental implant reinstates the stimulation that was once transferred through the natural root. This supports the bone regeneration that is needed for optimal jaw structure.
There are several points that each patient needs to consider when facing tooth replacement. To obtain full details on your treatment options, call (610) 649-0696.