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Your Options for Replacing Missing Teeth

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woman at the dentist

Elderly people aren’t the only ones losing their teeth. Tooth loss can happen to just about anyone due to things like tooth decay, tooth damage, gum infections, and more. Although prevention is the best way to address this problem, there are times where it’s just too late for that. If you’ve already lost teeth, there’s nothing you can do except try to replace it. Here are the best options you might expect your dentist to recommend for you:

Implants

A dental implant is used to replace either one single tooth or a row of missing teeth. This is done by first opening your gum to expose the bone underneath. A hole will be drilled into the bone and a metal pole will be affixed on it. The replacement tooth or set of teeth will be firmly anchored on the implant which serves as the foundation for the replacement tooth or teeth to sit on.

Dentures

Dentures are removable replacements for missing teeth. Temporary dentures may be put in place immediately after your teeth are removed while you wait for a more permanent option. There are different kinds of dentures that will suit a variety of cases:

  • Complete Dentures: Complete dentures are used to take the place of all of your teeth.
  • Partial Dentures: Partial dentures replace only a few teeth if you still have several of your natural teeth in place.
  • Implant-supported Dentures: This type of treatment mixes together the use of a dental implant which supports the denture.

dental concept

  • Snap-in Dentures: Snap-in dentures are also known as overdentures. They’re supported by implants or remaining teeth. They’re much more secure than regular removable dentures.
  • Flexible Dentures: Flexible dentures are a variation of a partial denture except they’re made out of a thinner material.
  • Upper and Lower Dentures: Upper and lower dentures are used either for the upper set of teeth or the lower set of teeth, wherever your missing teeth are located.

Bridges

Bridges are used to bridge the gap between several missing teeth. They act much like dentures, except they’re fixed to the jaw, whereas a denture is removable. Unlike implants, you won’t need to undergo surgery to have a bridge put in place. There are several different kinds of bridges that can address different conditions: 

  • Traditional Bridges: Traditional bridges are made up of one or more false teeth that are fastened together by dental crowns affixed to each tooth.
  • Implant-Supported Fixed Bridge: Implant-supported fixed bridges require implants to be embedded into the jawbone which are then used to anchor the bridge in place.
  • Cantilever Bridge: Cantilever bridges are much like traditional bridges, except that they only require one of your natural teeth right next to your missing tooth.
  • Maryland Dental Bridge: A Maryland bridge is also known as a resin-bonded partial bridge. It makes use of a porcelain tooth that’s placed on a metal frame. There are two wings that spread out on each side of the frame. These wings are then glued to the back of the adjacent teeth from where the gap is.

These solutions will help you replace any teeth you’ve lost. You should definitely be taking extra precautions to avoid losing your teeth, but these options prove that it’s not the end of the world when it happens.

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