Losing a tooth due to decay or trauma can be difficult – from dealing with the loss of a healthy tooth to dealing with the decision of how to replace the tooth. Choosing the best tooth replacement for you can be confusing, especially if you are not familiar with all of the current options.
Considerations When Replacing A Lost Tooth
It is extremely important to understand that there is no one “best” solution for a lost tooth – different solutions are best for different patients and different circumstances. When making the decision to replace a tooth, you should first consider:
- Your medical history.
- Your oral health.
- Your dental insurance coverage.
- Your budget.
- Your personal needs and wishes.
The Pros and Cons of Choosing A Bridge
A bridge is a dental procedure that anchors a prosthetic tooth between two healthy teeth. This procedure is ideal if the patient has a healthy tooth on either side of the missing tooth and if the patient is looking for a quick, well-known, and relatively inexpensive fix to their problem.
However, bridges do have downsides. Because a bridge requires caps to be placed on two of your other teeth, the dentist must file those teeth down, causing damage to otherwise healthy teeth. In addition, bridges make it difficult to floss and clean the area, an issue that could lead to gum disease and tooth decay in the area down the road. Also, because bridges do not engage the jaw bone like implants do, they could cause bone loss in the jaw. Finally, bridges need to be replaced every seven to ten years on average. Often when a bridge fails and needs to be replaced, it also causes the loss of an additional tooth, making the replacement more complicated.
The Pros and Cons of Choosing a Dental Implant
A dental implant inserts a titanium post into your jaw bone and then inserts a crown on top of the post, creating a prosthetic tooth that looks and feels like a natural tooth. Implants are ideal for patients who want a long-term solution to their tooth loss that is easy to care for and that does not depend on the integrity of nearby teeth. Implants are also a good solution for those who are concerned about jaw bone loss.
The cost of a dental implant is very close to the same as that of a bridge. Because of the differences in insurance coverage, one or the other may result in less expense to the patient.
Tooth Replacement At The Surgical Arts Centre
The best way to discover the right tooth replacement solution for you is to speak with your dentist and an oral surgeon about your medical history as well as your needs and wants. To schedule a consultation with a surgeon at Alpine, or to simply ask a question about a procedure, contact us today.