Things can turn bad to worse if you ignore tooth decay in its onset. Tooth decay occurs when bacteria spreads from the tooth pulp to the surrounding areas or throughout the periodontal tissues which causes inflamed gums or even an abscess. In the long run, tooth extraction may be considered and you’ll permanently lose your natural tooth. Fortunately, modern dentistry has solved that problem if preventive measures fail. You won’t have to go through the rest of your without teeth which will lead to further dental related problems.
Dental implants and bridges are two of the most common dental procedures that patients seek from their dentists when suffering from tooth loss. While these are totally different procedures, they share the same goal of replacing missing teeth with natural-looking false ones. Both can fill in the gap that the lost tooth has left, but before deciding which is best, it is best to learn how the procedures are done first.
Implants and Bridges in a Nutshell
Dental bridges are formed across the gap of the missing tooth and are attached with the two teeth at either sides of the gap. The purpose is to secure false teeth in the missing tooth area while making sure that they’re properly aligned with the natural teeth. When teeth loss happens, some of the natural teeth near the gap may drift towards it which results to misalignment. While they can effectively mimic natural teeth, dental bridges may not be the permanent solution that you’re looking for. Since making permanent bridges take time, your dentist may advise you to wear temporary bridges. However, many unexpected things can happen while you’re wearing them. Also, your permanent bridges may not fit as perfectly as you’d expect it to be.
On the other hand, dental implants are literally screwed onto your jaw bones to act like a tooth root that holds on permanently. During the healing process, the bone actually fuses with the titanium screw attached to it, making the results more permanent. When the healing takes place, it’s time to attach the abutment to the titanium screw and finally, a crown to finish the procedure. While you need to wait for a week at most for bridges, dental implants may take even longer.
Aside from knowing how both procedures are done, it is also good to consider a few other things before finally making up your mind.
Aesthetics and Perfect Fit
The goal of having a dental replacement is to make you look and feel good again. You can tell that you’ve got a good replacement if other people can’t tell that you are wearing false teeth. The idea of having natural-looking false teeth is something that all patients want to achieve when they decide to have either of the procedures done. After all, you only have two reasons for fixing your teeth: to keep them healthy and to make them look presentable.
Hygiene and Maintenance
The final result of dental implants are very close to your natural teeth. There’s no bridge that connects one tooth to the other so cleaning it would just be the same as cleaning the rest of your natural teeth. As long as you know how to brush and floss correctly, hygiene is not a problem at all.
Cleaning your dental bridges properly will require some instruction since you will need to make sure that you are brushing at the right angle to clean all necessary areas. This is something you definitely want to bring up with your dentist, so that you can make sure that you are cleaning your bridges the best way possible. After such a large dental investment maintenance should be a high priority and not taken lightly.
The true value of your money is measured when you try to weigh in on their longevity and not only with the price that comes with it. Dental bridges are attached at the surface of the teeth and use the other two teeth on both sides of the gap, while dental implants work on the inner portion, creating a strong base for the crown to fit in. Bridges are long term but not permanent fixtures and problems may arise. In some rare cases, removing them may be necessary.
Considering the amount of time needed for dental implants and the quality it gives you, it costs 30% more than the price of dental bridges. In the long run however, it may come off cheaper since you won’t need to replace them if they are properly installed. Dental implants and bridges are both long lasting solutions, but with implants you likely will not have to remove the false teeth once properly inserted.
Both procedures have their own pros and cons depending on the present condition of your oral health. While you already know what’s in store for you from both procedures, it is still best to seek the advice from a dental professional. Get a dental assessment, talk to your dentist, and decide which procedure works best for you. Every patient’s needs are different, and you don’t want to miss out on what your dental condition truly needs. Additionally, dental advancements are constantly taking place, and your dentist will know the latest dental methods in order to properly assess your situation.
A good dentist will thoroughly assess their patient’s situation and explain all of the pros and cons of each procedure from both a financial and dental health perspective allowing them to make the most informed decision they can possibly make. Every dentist should should offer this same level of service. If your dentist seems to be making an impulsive decision without discussing the pros and cons, you may want to find another dentist.