7 Ways to Replace a Missing Tooth (The Best Replacement Options)
Are you ready to learn 7 ways to replace a missing tooth!
If you’re considering having a tooth removed or have been missing a tooth for some time, the following information will help you understand the long term effects of doing nothing!
- Retaining tooth alignment (effects chewing and eating and can lead to possible pain in jaws)
- Improving aesthetics of your smile
- Addressing possible changes in your speech
But are there more than one or two ways to replace a missing tooth?
This Sarnia dentist says, “Yes!”
While not all options are a practical solution for each one of our patients, the choices give you the flexibility of selecting a personalized approach to restoring and improving the overall health of your mouth.
Dental ImplantsRegarded as the standard for tooth replacement, dental implants mimic the function of a natural tooth root. The titanium post integrates into the bone over a period of about 4 months. Once integration has occurred, Dr. Davis will then restore your implant with a ceramic crown fabricated here in our office. When properly cared for, dental implants have the potential to last the rest of your life, with a success rate close to 98%. They’re likely the most practical solution when it comes to return on investment for your missing tooth treatment.
Traditional BridgesBefore dental implants were considered common practice, dental bridges were the main treatment for replacing a tooth that remained bonded in place (versus having a removable partial denture made). A bridge (depending on number of teeth that have been lost) usually consists of 3 or 4 dental crowns fused side by side, the middle being completely supported by the crowns on each end. When bonded over healthy teeth, bridges fill in the space with a functional and stable prosthesis.
Maryland BridgesMaryland bridges are a distant third, mainly used as a transition appliance. This style can only support one small tooth, bonded into place with metal wings to opposing supporting teeth. In rare cases, damaged teeth can be suspended in a similar matter, especially if the patient is older or a young child.
Removable Flipper Tooth“Flippers” are also used as a temporary tooth replacement. They’re designed to work for a limited time, such as during the 4 month healing time after an implant placement.
Partial and Full DenturesTraditional full and partial dentures are removable prosthetics that sit directly on top of your gum tissues. Full dentures replace all teeth that are missing, where as a and partial denture snap into place around the remaining existing teeth with clasps.
Most dentures are made from acrylic or a metal base framework with acrylic bonded to it.
Implant Retained Multi-Tooth RestorationsWhat is the preferred treatment for multiple teeth? When you support a denture or bridge with 2 or more dental implants, this allows us to replace several missing teeth, and give you a strong substructure for long term success. Depending on your preferences, implant supported dentures can be permanently affixed in place or removable!
Doing Nothing at All!
Of course, there’s always the option to do nothing. If you’ve had a tooth pulled but it’s not visible when you smile, you may be wondering if it’s worth replacing at all.
In the case of wisdom teeth, there’s no need to replace them. But other missing teeth in the mouth can lead to consequences that alter the alignment of your overall ability to chew and smile. For example, losing a molar may cause the one on the opposite arch (that bites against it) to start “super-erupting” out of its socket in an attempt to find a biting partner, while the teeth on either side of the missing tooth start to lean or tilt into the space. Gradually, this creates a chain reaction throughout your mouth.
Which Option is Best for You?
Dr. Karen Davis Dentistry, we provide practical and proven solutions for our patients’ tooth replacement needs. Whether you have one missing tooth or several, we’ll review the appropriate options available so that you can make an informed choice about your smile’s future.
Ready to fill in that open space in your smile? Contact our Sarnia dentist office today to schedule your complimentary consultation!