Dental Implants vs Bridges: Over ten percent of Americans aged 50-64 years old have no remaining teeth. Moreover, those with lower incomes, smokers, and minority groups are more likely to be missing multiple teeth.
Unfortunately, tooth loss can cause many adverse effects such as altered speech, inability to chew nutritious foods, poor self-esteem, social withdrawal, and periodontal disease. Thus, it is vital to replace missing teeth as soon as possible.
Dental implants and bridges are two of the most common methods to reconstruct missing teeth. To help you choose which is the best option for you, we’ve made this dental implants vs bridges comparative guide!
What Are Dental Implants?
This artificial tooth is made from titanium, which fuses to the jawbone. After the oral surgeon anchors the post to the bone, it takes about six months to heal completely.
Once osseointegration (fusing to the bone) is complete, you will have a strong prosthetic. The next step is having a porcelain crown fitted and bonded onto the post to create a natural-looking tooth. It will look and feel so real that you may not even be able to tell it apart from your natural teeth!
Benefits of Dental Implants
Dental implants are usually the most desirable treatment for missing teeth. They are incredibly versatile, so dentists can use them to replace as many teeth as needed.
Moreover, dental implants are more secure than other alternatives. You won’t have to worry about them falling out or applying dental adhesives.
Further, implants can improve your speech if you have missing teeth. It will be easier to pronounce certain words that require the use of the tongue against the teeth, such as “z,” “ch,” and “th” sounds.
Dental implants also allow you to eat your favourite foods, which isn’t always the case with dentures. Even chewy or crunchy foods are perfectly safe for consumption with implants!
Implants are strong and durable, meaning that they can last a lifetime with proper maintenance. Yet, you may need to replace your crown after about fifteen years.
When to Get Dental Implants?
Candidates for dental implants are typically adults in good health. Even though dental implants have a high success rate, there are cases when the implant becomes infected or is rejected by the patient’s mouth. Usually, this is due to a lack of healthy jawbone or an underlying health condition that prevents proper healing.
Thus, you should ask your dentist if you make an ideal candidate for implants. They will perform some imaging tests, such as X-ray or CT scans to ensure that your jawbone is healthy enough, increasing the likelihood of a successful outcome.
Another thing to consider when getting dental implants is the amount of time it takes to complete the process from start to finish. You will have to schedule several dentist appointments and be willing to follow through with the treatment, which can take more than six months. Being committed is a must!
Nevertheless, dental implants are the most natural and permanent solution for missing teeth. Since they last longer, they will also save you money in the long run.
So if your insurance covers it or you are willing to invest the time and money in your oral health, dental implants are likely the right choice for you!
What Are Dental Bridges?
Dental bridges are less invasive than implants, as they don’t require surgery. A downside of bridges is that they don’t replace the teeth’ roots. Instead, dentists use existing teeth to support a crown that covers the missing gaps in your mouth.
To be eligible for a bridge, you need to have stable teeth that can support it. If you have periodontal disease, chips or cracks in your teeth, or tooth decay, you will need additional treatments first.
Benefits of Dental Bridges
One benefit of dental bridges is that they require much less time to place in a patient’s mouth. Since there is no surgical procedure involved, it is also much less painful.
Dental bridges are also cemented in place, making them secure. Moreover, you won’t have to worry about cleaning your bridge or applying any denture adhesive. You can care for it by brushing and flossing, just as you do your other teeth!
Further, dental bridges are the more affordable option, and your dental insurance is more likely to cover the cost.
When to Get Dental Bridges?
Dental bridges are often the best choice for missing teeth when a patient is not able to pay for implants out of pocket. They are also more common when patients need full mouth reconstruction, as many patients are reluctant to replace all of their teeth with implants.
If you have a medical condition that prevents or inhibits your body from healing properly, your dentist will likely recommend a bridge instead of implants. The same is true for individuals who lack healthy jawbone to fuse with the implant or those with periodontal disease.
Smokers may also want to get a dental bridge instead of implants since they have an increased risk of infection during dental implant procedures.
The best way to decide between dental bridges vs implants is to visit a dentist. If you don’t have dental coverage, you can learn more here about dentist near me no insurance.
Making a Choice Between Dental Implants vs Bridges
When it comes to replacing one or several missing teeth, it can be challenging to decide which option is right for you. After considering the differences between dental implants vs bridges, you likely have a clear idea of which treatment you prefer.
Be sure to make an appointment with a dentist specializing in replacing missing teeth since they can answer all your questions and then develop an adequate treatment plan for you!
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