Dental technology is coming a long way, and restorative dentistry offers modern prosthetic solutions. Both dental implants and bridges are restoration methods for missing teeth. Still, the number of teeth you’re missing and their location will help our dental team decide which one is right for you.
If you’re wondering how to restore your smile, contact our team and we’ll be happy to help you out.
What Is a Dental Implant?
Dental implants are artificial teeth and roots placed in the jawbone to replicate the look and function of a natural tooth. Implants work with the jawbone structure to replace a missing root with a titanium post and artificial crown. After placing the artificial root in the gums, the jawbone will grow around the titanium root, grounding it in place.
There are 2 major types of dental implants: endosteal and subperiosteal.
- Endosteal implants are the most common and are implanted in the bone
- Subperiosteal Implants are inserted under the gums without being drilled into the jawbone
Typically, an implant is preferred when replacing a single tooth. However, your dentist will conduct a thorough assessment to ensure the bone is strong enough to support the titanium root before choosing this option.
Advantages of a Dental Implant
There are several benefits of dental implants when restoring missing teeth.
- They’re durable and can last 15 years or more
- They maintain a natural look
- Implants feel more like real teeth
Drawbacks of a Dental Implant
Some of the cons of dental implants include:
- Potential surgical complications
- The lengthy treatment process, sometimes up to 6 months
- It may require bone graft surgery depending on the integrity of your jawbone
What Is a Dental Bridge?
A dental bridge will ‘bridge’ the gap caused by missing teeth. A bridge is held in place by the surrounding healthy teeth and can often be used when missing a series of teeth. A dental bridge is cemented to become a permanent fixture of your smile.
There are different types of dental bridges, including:
- Traditional fixed bridges: Include a crown on either side of the pontic
- Resin-bonded bridges: Typically used for more frontal teeth
- Implant-supported bridges: Use surgically imbedded implants to support the bridge
Bridges can be constructed from different materials, such as porcelain, alloys, or composite, depending on the location of your missing teeth and other factors.
Advantages of a Dental Bridge
Bridges are often less invasive than dental implants, which is a significant benefit, but a dental bridge may be the ideal choice for several reasons.
- You won’t need surgery
- The recovery time is fast
- It’s initially cost-effective
Drawbacks of a Dental Bridge
Getting a dental bridge can have potential drawbacks:
- They may be difficult to clean
- The lifespan is only 10 to 15 years
- They can damage the healthy teeth surrounding the missing teeth
- They can look less natural and become loose over time
Which Option Is Right for You?
These restorative dentistry options are unique. While they can both replace missing teeth and preserve proper tooth alignment, maintain face shape, and avoid problems with chewing and talking, both options may not be suitable for your case.
At Pristine Dental, our team will examine your mouth, identify your oral health problems, and determine whether an implant or bridge will be the best restorative treatment for your teeth, oral health habits, and lifestyle.
Some of the primary considerations between choosing a dental implant or a bridge include:
- Number of missing teeth
- Mouth health and overall well-being
- Treatment time
Schedule Your Next Appointment
Many people lose teeth for various reasons, and there’s nothing to be embarrassed about. Beginning with a comprehensive dental exam, you can discuss your oral health concerns with your dentist and hygienist to restore your teeth to their best state.