Bridges vs. Dental Implants
Missing teeth can have many implications for your oral health. The American College of Prosthodontists says that approximately 178 million people in the United States are missing at least one tooth. Dental bridges and dental implants can restore your confidence and smile.
One or more missing teeth can impact your self-esteem and lead to dental complications. Our dental specialists at Chicago Dental Esthetics will run diagnostic tests to evaluate your oral health.
What Are Bridges?
Dental bridges are prosthetics that act as artificial teeth. They are usually made from porcelain or resin materials that resemble your tooth’s appearance. The prosthetic has crowns that attach to the teeth next to the space. A traditional bridge only works when the teeth on either side of the gap are healthy.
Other types of bridges, such as the cantilever bridge, require only one healthy tooth. Alternatives like the Maryland dental bridge do not have a crown but use an adhesive instead.
What Are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are titanium posts implanted into the jawbone to replace missing teeth. The implant is a post that mimics the appearance and function of your tooth’s root. The implant stimulates the jawbone and minimizes bone deterioration after tooth loss.
Research shows 25 percent of your bone density is lost in the first year after losing a tooth. The jawbone continues to deteriorate for as long as there is a gap.
Jawbone deterioration can increase the size of the gap and force your teeth to shift. It may also cause discomfort when you chew food. In severe cases, the tooth loosens and may even fall out.
Our team believes the best approach is to prevent dental problems. However, if you have bone resorption, our dental team may suggest a dental implant. An implant will stimulate the jawbone and make it comfortable to chew food.
However, gum tissue and jawbone must be healthy before getting an implant. Sometimes the procedure involves grafting, which may take several months. Dental implants enhance your chewing and bite function better than most alternatives.
What Are Implant-Supported Bridges?
Unlike traditional bridges, implant-supported bridges use an implant to hold the prosthetic in position. The arch of teeth only needs four to six implants to complete the structure of the bridge. Our dental team will schedule a procedure to affix the implant to the jawbone. The bridge is placed over the implant after the bone heals.
The procedure may take several months to complete. But that depends on your oral health. As with implants, you need to have a healthy jawbone density before undergoing the implant-supported bridges procedure. Our dentist will explain the treatment process and how long it will take for your case.
Which is the Better Option?
Dentures and implants can both be ideal solutions for a smile makeover. They have a design that matches the tooth’s appearance. Bridges are less demanding in terms of preparation and recovery. However, implants last longer than bridges or other alternatives for missing teeth. Implants can resist breaking or chipping. Our dental specialist can explore all the options before the procedure to see which one is best for you and your situation.
Contact Chicago Dental Esthetics at (847) 677-1119 today!