Following tooth loss, a number of once enjoyable daily activities can suddenly seem daunting, cumbersome, or even embarrassing. After all, who wants to try to chew on an apple, only to have one’s dentures shift about, or get stuck altogether? Who wants to smile and laugh with friends, when he or she is concerned about ill-fitting or unnatural-looking dentures? Fortunately for patients suffering from tooth loss, modern prostheses offer a number of ways to complete the smile again, many of which are designed to inspire confidence while chewing and, just as importantly, smiling. Dental bridges and dental implants are two popular prosthetic options. Could one be right for you?
What Makes Dental Bridges Different than Dentures?
Unlike unsupported dentures, a dental bridge is more secure because it is anchored using dental crowns. By affixing two crowns to the remaining teeth closest to the one that has fallen out or been extracted, a dentist can use a bridge to create a stable form of smile restoration.
Dental bridges can actually be used to replace a single missing tooth or several, and they can last for many years with proper preventive care. Plus, they can be completed quickly and take little time for adjustment.
When Are Dental Implants the Ideal Prosthetic?
However, patients looking for even more stability while chewing, may prefer the added benefits of choosing a dental implant. Implants are the only prosthetic that are anchored by a post made to mimic a natural tooth root, one that is surgically inserted into the jawline. While this process makes for more invasive initial treatment, it is also what provides the utmost security as a patient chews, and added longevity. In fact, the post is designed to last an entire lifetime.
Like bridges, a single dental implant can be used to anchor one replacement tooth or several.