What Are My Options for Replacing a Missing Tooth?

Losing a natural tooth is almost never ideal. However, in some cases, tooth extraction may be the only option to resolve a problem such as extensive tooth decay or a tooth fracture. Other times, losing a natural tooth may happen unexpectedly. Regardless of whether you’ve had your tooth pulled or lost your tooth suddenly, in most cases, it’s important to replace your missing tooth as soon as possible. So what are your options for replacing missing teeth?

Dental Implants

Dental implants are one of the best options for replacing natural teeth. If you have enough bone in your jaw, you will typically qualify for dental implants. However, even if you don’t have the proper jawbone density, you may still be able to get a bone graft to build up your jawbone to support the implant.

A dental implant uses a titanium or ceramic post to replace your tooth root with a dental crown on the end, giving you the ability to chew, speak, smile, and laugh without feeling self-conscious because the implant is held securely in your jaw. Dental implants have a 95% success rate, making them an excellent option for missing natural teeth [1].

Dental Bridge

A dental bridge can replace one or several missing teeth. The missing teeth will be replaced with artificial teeth that are held in place with dental crowns, which are attached to the neighboring teeth. There are different types of dental bridges you can choose from, including a cantilever bridge or a resin-bonded bridge [2].

Dental bridges may be an option for those who don’t qualify for dental implants. Or, you may have the option for an implant-supported bridge, where your dentist will use a combination of dental implants and a bridge to create an artificial tooth restoration, which can work well for several missing teeth.

Partial Denture

A partial denture can help replace one or several missing teeth. The denture consists of a metal framework that holds artificial teeth in place—it will fit somewhat like an orthodontic retainer.

Although a partial denture won’t help maintain your jawbone or restore full function of your teeth like dental implants, contemporary dentures are a minimally invasive and affordable way help improve your appearance and your quality of life after tooth loss [3].

Why Is It Important to Replace a Missing Tooth?

Replacing a missing tooth is important because when a natural tooth is lost, the teeth surrounding that tooth can shift into its place over time. This movement can create awkward gaps in the teeth and change your natural bite.

When you replace a missing tooth shortly after losing a natural tooth, you help maintain the bone in your jaw and increase your options for restoring your smile. Replacing your tooth can also ensure you can continue to speak, chew, and smile as you did before.

Find Out Your Tooth Replacement Options

If you’re missing one or several of your natural teeth, follow up with your dentist to discover more about your tooth replacement options. Remember, the sooner you pursue your options, the more choices you will have!

Sources:
1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5774056/
2. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/10921-dental-bridges
3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28343666/

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What Are My Options for Replacing a Missing Tooth?
Article Name
What Are My Options for Replacing a Missing Tooth?
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Regardless of whether you’ve had your tooth pulled or lost your tooth suddenly, in most cases, it’s important to replace your missing tooth as soon as possible. So what are your options for replacing missing teeth?
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Elite Prosthetic Dentistry