What’s Best for Me? Bridges, Dentures or Implants?
For those who are missing teeth, whether from gum disease, injury or another reason, modern dentistry offers a range of options for replacing them. Those dealing with tooth loss can have problems chewing and eating, and may not feel as confident as they should when it comes to their smile. Dental professionals like our team at Periodontal Associates of Memphis want everyone to have a healthy smile, so, in this post, we’d like to make you aware of some of the options for replacing missing teeth.
Also known as partial dentures, bridges are a solution for those who have a gap due to one or more missing teeth. Bridges typically consist of a false tooth (known as a pontic) which is anchored into place by a crown on the teeth on either side of the gap. Instead of using your natural teeth, bridges can also be held in place by dental implants (which we cover in more detail below).
Bridges can either be permanent (fixed) or removable; meaning they can be taken out for cleaning.
Many options are available when it comes to dentures, such as overdentures when the patient still has some of their natural teeth, or complete dentures when replacing all of the teeth on the top or bottom arch. As extractions are often required before dentures can be fit, dentures can either be placed in a couple of weeks after all of the healing is done or, in some cases, immediately after the procedure. In this situation, the patient will need to come in for follow-up visits to adjust the fit of the dentures as the mouth heals.
Periodontal Associates of Memphis offers our patients fixed or removable denture options anchored with dental implants.
Currently, the best man-made replacement for natural teeth, dental implants replace even the root of the original tooth, helping prevent bone loss while looking and acting just like a healthy tooth. These can be used to replace individual missing teeth or can work in combination with any of the denture options mentioned above.
One possibility for those who need to replace the full top or bottom set of teeth is Teeth-in-a-Day implant-retained dentures. More cost-effective than replacing all of the teeth with individual implants, this procedure uses a set of four implants to hold the prosthetic in place. A temporary restoration will be placed on the day of the procedure, meaning the patient can immediately return to speaking and chewing normally.
If you’re interested in learning more about dental implants and implant-retained dentures and want to know if you might be a good candidate for them, request an appointment now to speak to one of our periodontists!