Missing teeth can be embarrassing and uncomfortable, but how can you solve the problem? If you’re afflicted by missing teeth, here are three tooth replacement options that will give you the smile of your dreams!
- Traditional Bridges
- Full or Partial Dentures
- Dental Implants
Bridges are affixed restorations that are made to replace one or more missing teeth. They can be supported by a dental implant or by natural teeth. A traditional bridge is made by inserting a natural-looking false tooth between two dental crowns (or caps) placed on the teeth on either side of the gap left by a missing tooth. When placing the crowns, part of the supporting teeth will need to be removed to fit the crowns on top. These traditional bridges are usually made of either ceramic or porcelain fused to metal. You can also place a bridge by bonding metal “wings” onto the back of your existing teeth and then bonding the false teeth to this metal framework.
Bridges are typically completed in at least two visits and last about five to seven years. Their durability is often dictated by the health of the supporting teeth, so it’s critical that bridge wearers practice outstanding oral hygiene!
Dentures are perhaps the most well-known replacements for missing teeth. While they will never feel exactly the same as natural teeth, today’s dentures look more realistic and are more comfortable than ever before. Dentures are customized and you can get either full or partial denture depending upon how many of your teeth are missing. A full denture is a flesh-colored acrylic piece that’s placed in your mouth after any remaining teeth are removed and tissues have healed, which can take several months. Partial dentures rest on a metal framework that attaches to your natural teeth, like a removable alternative to a bridge.
Over time, dentures will need to be relined, remade, or rebased as a result of normal wear and tear. You should take out your dentures every day for proper cleaning with a special denture paste (not traditional toothpaste) and have them checked by Dr. Akinwande least once a year.
A dental implant is a biocompatible metal post that is surgically implanted into the jawbone beneath your gums, functioning as a sturdy anchor for the restoration, or replacement tooth, placed on top. Made of titanium, these posts are incredibly stable so that the restoration mounted to the implants won’t slip or shift in your mouth. Dental implants don’t have to affix to adjacent teeth, so dentures and bridges supported by dental implants feel more like your natural teeth than conventional restorations.
If cared for properly, they can last for years, even decades. You’ll need to have healthy gums and strong bones to support the implant, so discuss with Dr. Akinwande to see if implants are right for you!
Contact Us to Restore Your Smile!
If you have missing teeth and want to learn more about these treatment options to restore your smile, contact us today to schedule a consultation at Chesterfield Dentistry.