Non-implant missing tooth replacement options
Have you recently had a tooth extracted, or are missing a tooth and looking for the right tooth replacement treatment option for you? Due to advances in dental technology, there are many tooth replacement options available to you. Overall, there are dental implant options and non-implant options. A dental implant is a permanent metal post that is securely inserted into the jawbone. While dental implants are becoming increasingly popular, they are the costlier option and overall the treatment can take several months to have your tooth replaced. There are alternative non-implant options that may be a better fit for your needs. What are the non-implant tooth replacement options and how do they work? Below is more information to help get you started on finding the right treatment fit for you.
Non-implant replacement treatment options
The most common non-implant tooth replacement options are dentures and dental bridges. Here are some of the more common types of bridges and dentures:
A dental bridge at Kitsap Dental Care is a prosthetic replacement option that is designed to “bridge the gap” created by the missing tooth. A bridge has an artificial tooth attached to fill the gap.
- Tooth-supported fixed bridge: The most common type of dental bridge is a tooth-supported fixed bridge, also called a traditional bridge. A traditional dental bridge usually has an artificial tooth, a pontic, with dental crowns on each side that attach to your natural teeth. A traditional bridge is best for when just one tooth is missing and is designed to attach onto the teeth, not be implanted into the gums. In general, a traditional bridge will last approximately 5-10 years.
- Resin-bonded bridge: A resin-bonded bridge, also called a Maryland Bridge, is a metal frame with a porcelain tooth attached in the middle. Different than a tooth-supported bridge, the Maryland Bridge has two metal wings that are attached to the back of nearby teeth with bonding. This type of bridge is more commonly used to replace front teeth that have less demands than back teeth when it comes to chewing. In general, a bonded bridge or Maryland bridge require less preparation of nearby teeth and are believed to be as secure as a tooth-supported fixed bridge.
The biggest difference between dentures and bridges is that dentures are less permeant. A benefit of dentures is that you can get at least a temporary option, very quickly, without requiring any preparation of adjacent teeth. However, if dentures are not properly made and fitted to your mouth, they may have issues with being less secure or comfortable.
- Removable partial dentures: Removable partial dentures are a quick fix when one or more teeth are missing. They often do not look or function as well as natural teeth, but still partially treat the problem of replacing the missing teeth. A partial denture is different than a full denture that is designed to sit on top of the entire upper or lower gums.
- Removable complete denture: A complete set of dentures is designed to sit on top of the gums where missing teeth once were. Getting a full set of dentures that is designed for you and fit well is very important. Dentures can often be uncomfortable if they do not fit securely and can cause soreness of the gums from rubbing and shifting.
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