Dental Bridge vs. Implant

You can choose from a number of options for replacing teeth at Dental Associates of Morris County. When you have one missing tooth or more, you don’t have to live with gaps in your mouth. And since your family dentist also practices cosmetic dentistry, he knows your dental history, budget and appearance goals. Old-fashioned dentures aren’t your sole option either, not when you can choose between a dental bridge vs. implants.

Your dental health always is the first concern of your family dentist at Dental Associates of Morris County. And missing teeth affect your health as much as your appearance.

No matter how you lost your teeth, delaying the right treatment leads to complications that continue to impact your well-being. Your Madison, NJ cosmetic dentist can deliver a complete smile makeover while ensuring you end up with renewed confidence and satisfaction with your appearance.

Missing Teeth and Your Health

With tooth loss, your health may be at risk, never mind your self-image. When you can’t chew properly, your digestion is affected. You lose bone density when there isn’t a root to maintain bone strength. And your social and business opportunities may be reduced if you’re embarrassed by gaps in your smile.

Missing teeth leave spaces that eventually change the line of your jaw, and the remaining teeth don’t have the support they need. The teeth around the gap tilt and move, causing opposing teeth to shift up or down. This places stress on your jaw that leads to persistent jaw pain, requiring other dental procedures.

Why You May Lose Teeth

There are a slew of reasons why you may even be considering a dental implant bridge or other tooth replacement alternative. Your Madison, NJ dentist can tell you why your teeth may be unstable and recommend the best treatment. He explains the differences between a dental implant vs. bridge and other replacement options. He advises you which may suit you best, based on a thorough dental exam and your dental history.

The reasons that you’ve lost teeth ultimately play a key role in how you proceed. The reasons you lose teeth may be due to:

  • Spending years smoking
  • Waiting too long to get treatment for tooth decay
  • Allowing gum disease to go unchecked, resulting in tooth extractions
  • Drinking too many sugary drinks
  • Eating sticky food
  • Ignoring your daily dental hygiene
  • Being ill with cancer or diabetes
  • Taking medications that impact tooth health
  • Getting hurt while playing sports
  • Being in a car accident
  • Inheriting dental problems

Why Choose Between Dental Implant vs. Bridge?

The debate over which is better, dental bridge vs. implant, remains ongoing. Both solutions work. Your choice depends on your dentist’s recommendations, the health of your jaw, your budget and your preferences.

At Dental Associates of Morris County, your cosmetic dentist can help you with affordable dentistry plans. Once you’ve made the right choice, you may work out payment plans or find that your dental insurance pays for some procedures more readily than others.

Getting a Dental Implant Bridge

Your dentist explains the dental bridge vs. implant debate so you can make a wide decision. A bridge is best used when healthy teeth are strong on both sides of a gap and can act as abutments. A bridge requires the use of crowns that get attached to the abutment teeth. The artificial teeth sit within the vacant space between the abutments.

Without implants, a dental bridge usually is less expensive. As long as you follow a good oral routine, a bridge can last for 10 years or more. Your dentist has to scale down healthy teeth to create appropriate abutment crowns.

The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry states: “For a long time, fixed bridges were the best alternative for people who had lost teeth, as they were quite successful and aesthetically pleasing. Unfortunately, bridges can also present some problems because the natural teeth that lie on either side of the bridge are filed to accept the appliance. This step in the bridge-making procedure may make these teeth prone to bacterial plaque accumulations, decay, periodontal disease, and the possible need for future root canals.”

Dental Implant vs. Bridge

Alternatively, your dental bridge vs. implant decision rests on your needs and your jaw health. Implants are permanent and can last a lifetime. They’re more durable than bridges. Implants rely on titanium screws as posts for crowns. Implants also fuse with the jaw bone to strengthen and preserve it while encouraging continued bone growth.

Implants can replace multiple teeth or just one tooth. The crown that fits on the implant functions and looks just like your natural teeth.

The Best Time to Make Dental Implant vs. Bridge Decisions

The Consumer Guide to Dentistry states that: “Dental implantation must be performed after adolescence, when bone growth is complete. X-ray or CT scans … evaluate bone density and quality and to determine whether a potential implant patient has enough bone structure for implantation.”

If you smoke, you need to quit before you can get implants. And if you have gum disease, diabetes, or cancer, a dental bridge may be your best bet.