Missing Teeth Replacement
Losing a tooth can be very distressing, which is why it’s important to do all you can to protect your permanent teeth at all stages of life. Even with the best intentions, though, it’s not always possible to avoid the damage caused by gum disease or physical trauma. When a tooth is lost, appreciating the options for missing teeth replacement is vital.
Acquiring this knowledge is the only way to truly discover which solution is best for your individual circumstances. Here are the four main options at your disposal.
Option 1: Do Nothing
Losing a tooth isn’t likely to be life-threatening. Therefore, individuals that are happy to continue their life with a missing tooth on show are free to do it. In reality, though, taking the easy option is rarely a good idea.
After all, the lost tooth will impact your daily life in several negative ways. Some of those issues include;
- Impact your physical appearance and, therefore, self-confidence.
- Impact the way you are received by others.
- Impact your facial structure due to the changing jawbone.
- Impact the way you eat
- Impact the tone of your voice.
All of those issues will impact your life on both a conscious and sub-conscious level. Furthermore, it could put you at risk of suffering even greater damage further down the line. In the long run, the lazy approach could cost you a lot of money as well as your health.
For the sake of your health, image, budget, and sanity, it’s probably best to avoid this option at all costs.
Option 2: Dental Implants
The most popular option by far, dental implants are considered the best type of tooth replacement product on the market. Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that are placed into the jaw and will hold a prosthetic tooth in place.
Dental implants are commonly available in two forms:
- In the bone (endosteal) involves placing screws, cylinders or blades into the jaw bone. This is used to hold the tooth in place.
- On the bone (subperiosteal) involves using metal contraptions to fix the implant just above the jaw bone before holding the tooth in place.
Dental implants have been used to replace teeth for over 50 years. Thanks to advancements in tech, the materials and techniques used mean that they are safer than ever before. There are many other reasons to choose this type of treatment too, including but not limited to:
- They offer stability for the false tooth, meaning that you won’t hear clicks when moving your mouth.
- Dental implants can be used to replace a single tooth or several teeth at once.
- When you take care of the dental implant and prosthetic tooth, they can last a lifetime.
- The dental implant and false tooth will be designed and manufactured to fit your mouth.
- Dental implants and false teeth can be made to suit the natural color of your teeth.
- Requires minimal maintenance compared to the other solutions.
- No need to remove structures of the adjacent teeth.
While dental implants are expensive and require several sessions, the long-term rewards that are seen on a daily basis should not be ignored.
Option 3: Bridges
When you only have a single tooth missing, dental bridges are another solution that are worth your consideration.
They are another form of permanent fixture that focus on the idea of ‘bridging’ the gap between two teeth either side of the missing tooth through the use of fixed crowns. A false tooth is then connected to the crowns.
There are several reasons why you may wish to choose bridges for single tooth replacement. They include, but are not limited to:
- They are cheaper.
- The process is quicker.
- They are not as dependent on good general health.
Nevertheless, there are a number of potential drawbacks to consider. Firstly, they are only suited to replacing a single tooth. Moreover, the adjacent teeth need to be stable and positioned in a suitable manner. It should also be noted that the use of crowns can make it more difficult to maintain and clean the prosthetic tooth and the adjacent teeth. Unfortunately, this can lead to decay.
Perhaps the biggest issue is that the success rates are significantly lower, meaning that you may need to find another solution anyway. Still, a professional dentist will go through the necessary checks to ensure that you are suited to bridges. So, this latter issue is unlikely to be a major problem.
Option 4: Dentures
Dentures are a long-standing option for teeth replacement, especially when several teeth have been lost. They are also known as removal partials as they can be inserted and taken out rather than offering a fixed solution.
The market is now blessed with several types of dentures, but they all offer a similar function and image. The benefits of using removable dentures include;
- They are the cheapest solution.
- They can be cleaned and maintained with ease.
- They don’t require surgery or major adjustments.
Modern dentures are more comfortable than in previous generations and offer greater reliability too. Therefore, it’s certainly worth considering this option when multiple teeth are missing, not least because there is no longer a need to extract other existing teeth.
However, the fact that they are not as stable can impact their performance and comfort, leading to seemingly minor issues that actually cause a lot of problems. Meanwhile, their functional possibilities are reduced and their appearance can suffer too.
Moreover, the failure to have a permanent fixture can leave your surviving teeth at risk. Likewise, the jaw bone can become compromised over the years due to a lack of support. As with any of the other options, weighing up the pros and cons is essential.
Conclusion: Which Option Is Right?
Losing a tooth or multiple teeth isn’t enjoyable, but there are options at your disposal. In truth, there is no single right or wrong solution and it’s important to consider a range of factors including the number of teeth to be replaced, your budget and lifestyle requirements.
Either way, the best thing to do is speak to a professional dentist that specialized in tooth replacement procedures. To arrange your free consultation appointment today, give Precision Periodontics and Implant Dentistry a call.