Dental Implants vs. Dental Bridges
There are pros and cons to every dental restoration procedure. When replacing a missing tooth, it is important to understand the short and long term effects of certain restorations on your smile. At Chabot Dental, we strive to help patients understand their treatment options. With this guide, we hope to help you understand the facts behind some of the most common tooth replacement options: dental implants and bridges.
Bridges are a traditional restoration method that uses neighboring healthy teeth to support the prosthetic tooth, known as the pontic. For many, this represents a non-invasive and less initially expensive option for smile reconstruction, as it does not require the placement of an implant.
Bridges can be made to almost perfectly match the aesthetic of the surrounding smile, but are less structurally sound. As bridges sit above the gum line, they fail to engage the underlying bone tissue, leading to bone deterioration, or resorption. Down the road, many patients need bone grafting to restore strength to the jaw. As bridges are attached to neighboring healthy teeth with crowns, these teeth must be altered in order to properly secure the restoration. Patients with bridges may find themselves requiring future retreatment and additional restorations to reinforce the compromised tooth.
Commonly accepted as the best restorative treatment currently available, dental implants are a stable and aesthetic choice for replacing missing teeth. This restoration uses titanium posts that are implanted into the bone, fusing to it as they heal. Integration to the bone and the simulation of a tooth’s root prevents the jaw structure from being reabsorbed by the body, caused by a lack of structural stimulation.
Implants have stricter eligibility qualifications than dental bridges, as they require the gums to be healthy and the bone to have sufficient integrity for the implants to be placed. If a patient does not meet these qualifications, is a smoker, heavy drinker, or has another condition that compromises gum health, they may require additional periodontic and surgical treatment in preparation for implant placement. The up-front cost of implants is also higher than other dental restorations; however, the surgical and fiscal costs are generally outweighed by the long-term benefits provided by dental implants. Along with preventing jaw malformation, this dental restoration is permanent, looks like a natural tooth, and only requires regular oral hygiene to remain healthy.
Start Your Ideal Smile Rehabilitation
To find out more about which dental restoration is right for you, contact Chabot Dental
today. Dr. Tabor and our team are eager to work with patients throughout Castro Valley to realize their ideal smile through high quality reconstructive services that cater to your individual needs, budget, and comfort levels.