Adult tooth loss is a problem that most patients would like to avoid, but one that many do experience at some point. Tooth loss results in a number of oral health concerns. Gaps in the teeth can compromise oral functions, threaten the health of adjacent teeth, and impact the structure of the jaw and smile. In addition, tooth loss affects the appearance of the smile. Restorative dentistry treatments enable our dentists to restore the strength, function, and beauty of the smile by addressing tooth loss. However, it is important to choose a restorative treatment that is appropriate for each patient’s unique situation. Dental bridges are appropriate for many patients, and patients can choose a traditional or implant-supported bridge. At Advanced Dentistry of Blakeney, our dentists discuss traditional vs. implant-supported dental bridges to help our Charlotte, NC patients decide which is best for them.
Dental bridges fill in gaps between teeth when adult tooth loss occurs. These restorations are fabricated to replicate either a single tooth or a small set of teeth. Traditionally, dental bridges are supported by dental crowns. By placing two dental crowns (one on each of the two teeth immediately adjacent to the gap left by tooth loss), our dentists create a strong and secure anchor for the pontic of the dental bridge.
Traditional dental bridge treatment requires just two dental appointments. It is an affordable treatment option for patients who have experienced tooth loss. Ideal candidates for a traditional dental bridge include those who have generally good oral health and strong, healthy teeth that can support the dental bridge.
An implant-supported dental bridge is a more modern approach to tooth loss. As with a traditional dental bridge, the center, pontic piece is fabricated to resemble the tooth or teeth that have been lost. However, rather than anchoring this restoration with dental crowns, our dentists can secure the dental bridge with dental implants. Dental implants are tiny screws that are surgically implanted into the jawbone, where they act as artificial tooth roots. The benefits of an implant-supported dental bridge are greater security, enhanced comfort, and increased durability.
Implant-supported dental bridges are more costly than a traditional dental bridge and do require multiple treatment procedures. In some cases, bone grafting or other preparatory procedures might be necessary. However, many patients feel that the enhanced benefits of an implant-supported bridge are well worth the extra time and cost of treatment. Implant-supported bridges may also be ideal for patients who do not wish to alter otherwise healthy adjacent teeth, or for those patients who do not have adjacent teeth that are strong enough to support a dental crown and bridge.
Dental treatments are never one-size-fits-all. Our dentists will be happy to examine the health of the teeth and discuss your personal preferences and dental expense budget to help you determine if you are better suited for a traditional or implant-supported dental bridge. At the end of the day, our goal is to provide patients with a restorative treatment that will give them a strong, healthy, beautiful smile while meeting their personal needs and desires.
If you have experienced tooth loss, there are several restorative dentistry treatments that can improve the strength and beauty of your smile. To learn more about these options, schedule an appointment with one of our experienced dentists at Advanced Dentistry of Blakeney.