Having a smile full of beautiful teeth is something that we tend to take for granted until we get in an accident and a tooth falls out or we have to have a tooth pulled for whatever reason. If you recently lost a tooth either in the front or back of your mouth, you may be wondering what you can do to restore your smile and look like your normal self again. Depending on several factors, your dentist may recommend one replacement option over another. The most common options to choose from are dental implants, dentures, and dental bridges.
Dental Implants: Dental implants are a great option for patients who have a little bit more money to spend and who have a healthy jaw bone. During the dental implant procedure, your dentist will implant a metal screw inside of your jawbone. Over the span of a couple of months, your jawbone will fuse around the screw to keep it in place. As long as it has fused correctly, your dentist will then place a dental crown over the top of the screw.
Dentures: Dentures are one of the more affordable replacement options, and you can either have a full set of dentures or partial dentures. Partial dentures are there to help you replace only a few missing teeth and usually involve the help of dental bridges.
If you have several missing teeth or if your dentist thinks that you need to have more teeth pulled, then they may recommend a full set of dentures. A full set of dentures will rest on your naked gums and will help keep your jawbone intact so that it doesn't start to lose its support. One thing that some patients like about dentures is that they can take them out at night.
Dental Bridges: Dental bridges are used in situations when a patient has a few missing teeth but either don't want implants or aren't good candidate for them. Essentially, a dental bridge will bridge the gap between tow of your teeth to help fill in a space. If you have a tooth that's missing between two teeth, your dentist will place caps on your two teeth with a dental prosthesis attached in between to help restore your smile.
During your initial consultation with your dentist, they will discuss all of your options with you to help you land on the right decision for your overall oral health.